20,000 Breaths A Day - A Small Change Could Make A Huge Impact
Andrea Nederveen, RMT - Registered Massage Therapist
Your autonomic nervous system allows you to breath without thinking. Our bodies were designed to receive breath through our nose and our mouth. However, breathing through your nose is the most effective way to get oxygen into your body without letting all sorts of foreign particles enter your body. The nose has an amazing filter build right in with tiny hairs called cilia. These hairs filter, humidify and heat or cool the air before it enters your lungs. Once the air enters the lungs the oxygen is pumped into the bloodstream and circulated throughout the entire body. Because your nostrils are smaller than your mouth, when you exhale through your nose it takes longer therefore allowing your body more time to absorb oxygen in your lungs.
Some of the immediate benefits of nasal breathing (according to healthline.com) are as follows:
Reduced exposure to foreign substances.
Humidifies and warms inhaled air.
Increased air flow to arteries, veins and nerves.
Increased oxygen uptake and circulation.
Improved lung volume.
Slows down breathing.
Assists diaphragm to work properly.
Allows you to sleep better – less snoring.
Helps with anxiety.
There are more benefits listed in various books and websites but these alone should make you want to change your breathing habits and train your body to nasal breath.
Often as Massage Therapists we encourage our clients to take some deep belly breaths to either relax or get through a tough trigger point. Nasal breathing can help you focus on your breath instead of the pain you may be experiencing.
You take approximately 20,000 breaths a day so it may be worth considering a small change that can make a huge impact.