Okay, so there's this thing called Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome which few doctors seem able to diagnose, but which causes lots of people a lot of unhappiness. In Europe where i live it's more diagnosed then in USA i noticed. It's called one of the most under diagnosed and underestimated diseases. More and more research shows that anxiety follows hyperventilation instead of the other way around. If you have had a bad way of breathing for years; the part of your brain that regulates breathing is set on a different value regarding CO2 and H2O. This means it will signal you to breath a little bit faster the whole day long.
Dont confuse chronic hyperventilation with acute hyperventilation. The last one will appear and leave fast and will let you gasp for air. The first one is more of a slow killer. If you feel hyper, anxiety all day long, you feel bit dizzy etc etc;..this is something you can test at a hospital.
For me i learned (but this is no medical approach but something i learned from working with 100's of CHS patients);..a simple test to see if you may have CHS is to hold your breath. Most of the time CHS patients cant hold their breath for very long. I started practicing exercises against CHS 10 years ago and i was 25 and couldn't hold my breath for more then 30 secs.
this i copy pasted:
The biggest clue to Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome is the presence of vague dizziness accompanied by a lot of other seemingly unrelated symptoms, which might include any of the following:
- shortness of breath for no apparent reason
- frequent sighing or yawning
- chest pains
- heart palpitations
- syncope (fainting)
- slurred speech
- cold, tingling, or numb lips or extremities
- nausea or irritable bowel syndrome
- aching muscles or joints, or tremors
- tiredness, unsteadiness, or diffuse weakness
- restless sleep, insomnia, or nightmares
- sexual problems
- anxiety or phobias
- fear that perhaps you're a hypochondriac
- dry mouth
- pressure in throat or difficulty swallowing
- bloating, belching, flatulence, or abdominal pain
- impaired memory or concentration
- confusion / disorientation
- tinnitis (ringing in ears)
- blurred vision, tunnel vision, double vision, or flashing lights
- tachycardia (rapid pulse)
- erratic blood pressure
Why So Many Weird Symptoms?
My understanding of this syndrome is far from perfect, as I am not a doctor. I am only a sufferer of this disorder who has done some research, but I'll do my best to share with you what I think I've learned. I highly recommend that you consult the links below, and talk to your own personal physician, to get more reliable information.
As it was explained to me, Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome constantly and slowly depletes your blood of carbon dioxide. With too little carbon dioxide in the blood, receptors that should be bonding with CO2 end up bonding with oxygen instead. Ironically, your blood ends up having too little free oxygen available to your body's systems and organs.
As a result, all of your body's systems receive too little oxygen. That means your brain, your stomach, your muscles ... they're all getting slightly deprived of oxygen. As a result, you start having seemily unrelated symptoms in all these different areas of the body. Your doctor might send you to a gazillion specialists, trying to figure out what's wrong with your ears, or your stomach, or your brain. I, myself, was sent -- over the course of 7 months or so of doctoral confusion -- to an ear doctor, an allergist, and a neurologist before they finally figured out what was going on. Some people with HVS go through a lot more intrusive and expensive tests than I did.
What the doctors are missing in these cases is the BIG PICTURE: the fact that the patient has several systems going slightly haywire ... probably from one source. And that source in this case is the oxygen-depleted blood.
So What Do You Do About It?
Opinions on treatment for Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome vary, because opinions on the causes vary widely, as well. Some doctors believe HVS is caused by anxiety. Others believe anxiety is understandably caused by your body's constant yet unconscious fear of impending suffocation. I personally think they're probably both right, and that some sort of vicious cycle gets started, in which the HVS and anxiety feed off each other.
So, anyway, some of the recommended treatments I've seen discussed include:
- Anti-anxiety medications
- Relaxation techniques such as meditation
- Breathing exercises
Resources for Chronic Hyperventilation Syndrome
I'm just a random person who suffered from HVS, so the info I've given here is no substitute for listening to the experts. Of course, the main thing I recommend, again, is that you go to talk to your personal physician. But I've listed below some of the other resources I found useful.
Edited by nocturneangel, 12 November 2011 - 04:05 PM.