Living and functioning with Adult ADHD is tough enough without the mental challenge of extra stress. You can help reduce stress and improve concentration by breathing through your nose.
Everyone who is, or lives with, an Adult ADHD sufferer knows that this condition can significantly alter normal life. Finances and family, marriage and career, physical health and emotional stability are all at stake.
When you are stressed, your symptoms can be exaggerated, which can trip a spiral of consequences that feed on each other: erratic sleep, chronic fatigue, nutritional problems and weight gain, cardiac disease and hypertension can all happen or worsen as response to stress.
How can you slice through stress to break the cycle and regain some control? Experts recommend these three medication-free approaches:
3 Ways to Naturally Reduce Stress:
- Regular exercise – this helps blow off excess energy, makes the body stronger and more stress-resistant, and produces hormones such as serotonin, dopamine and endorphins that help you gain some serenity and a sense of well-being.
- Positive energy – upbeat self-talk helps to counter the low-esteem problems many adults with ADHD experience. This is a component of both ADHD coaching and deeper care strategy like psychotherapy.
- Relax by breathing – even if you don’t practice yoga, meditation or tai chi, deep controlled breathing exercises can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and help you sleep better.
Here’s a dedicated breathing exercise that can help you develop good respiration habits as you live with ADHD:
Lying flat on the floor, place one hand on your belly, the other on your chest.
Inhale deeply through your nose, on a slow count of one to five. Use your diaphragm, which should push your navel away from your spine. Keep your shoulders relaxed, and notice that your chest rises only slightly as your lungs inflate.
Use Your Mouth to Exhale
Some yoga practitioners suggest you try to make the sound of the ocean as air rushes in and out at the back of your throat.
This technique and its variations have been practiced for centuries by yogis and meditators, and more recently their results have begun to attract more modern medical studies, which by and large confirm their effectiveness. There’s no negative interaction with medicine you may already take, and there’s no less expensive way to participate in and manage your ADHD care plan. You may find that this one exercise leads you to a deeper exploration of yoga, controlled nasal breathing and mindfulness practice, which have enriched many lives, and may well be of value in yours.