Pursed lip breathing
Pursed lip breathing helps you use less energy to breathe. It can help you relax. When you are short of breath, it helps you slow the pace of your breathing and can help you feel less short of breath.
Use pursed lip breathing when you do things that make you short of breath, such as:
You can practice pursed lip breathing anytime. Try to practice 4 or 5 times a day when you:
Exhale normally. Do not force the air out. Do not hold your breath when you are doing pursed lip breathing. Repeat these steps until your breathing slows.
Celli BR, ZuWallack RL. Pulmonary rehabilitation. In: Mason RJ, Murray JF, Broaddus VC, et al., eds. Murray and Nadel's Textbook of Respiratory Medicine. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier Saunders; 2010:chap 94.
Nield MA. Efficacy of pursed-lips breathing: a breathing pattern retraining strategy for dyspnea reduction. J Cardiopulm Rehab Prev. 2007;4:237-244.
Updated by: Denis Hadjiliadis, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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