Why Deep Breaths Reduce Stress

When we feel anxious or stressed we are told to take long deep breaths in order to calm ourselves down. Additionally, yoga practitioners and meditators use deep breathing to eradicate anxious or stressful thoughts. This works because our mind and body have a connection that allows both our mind and body to react to different situations. Now scientists have dug deeper into this connection and come up with answers. It turns out that there is a cluster of brain cells sitting on our brain stem that autonomously control our breathing, much like the brain cells exist to control our heartbeat. But the brain cells that control our breathing are much more complicated and different section control different types of breathing like rapid breathing, sleep breathing and even laughter. Each type of brain cell associates itself with a certain stimuli, so when our mind is stressed our body follows suit by activating the rapid breathing brain cells. The opposite is true as well, when our body is calm and breathing slowly it sends signals to our mind to follow suit.

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Source: NextGov.com

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