The Background of Anxiety Part 4

I hope you have enjoyed our series on Anxiety thus far.  We've been talking a lot about CO2, breathing, and there relationship to anxiety.  I'd like to dive deeper now into the breath.  On average we breathe 20k to 24k times.  The question to ask then is how are you breathing these breaths? 

Several lines of research aswell as my own clinical observation through working with real patients demonstrates to me that many people are breathing too quickly.  An optimal breath rate s generally between 4.5 and 7 BPM.  

Now this doesn't mean you need to be breathing 6 BPM when you're out running.  Just breathe the rate thats meets the demand of your activity.  

Want to dive deeper into your breath?  Schedule a first office call now.  

The Background of Anxiety Part 2

Is Anxiety a Carbon Dioxide deficiency?  

A few of the symptoms that occur from hypocapnia include

  1. anxiety
  2. Chest Pain
  3. Feeling tense
  4. Dizzy Spells
  5. Feeling Confused
  6. Faster or deeper breathing
  7. Shortness of  breath 
  8. Tingling fingers
  9. Unable to breeathe deeply
  10. Stiff fingers or arms
  11. Tight feelings round mouth
  12. Cold hands and feet 
  13. Palpitations
  14. Bloating in stomach
  15. Blurred vision

These are a few of the Medically Unexplained symptoms that can occur if your medical doctor can't find anything wrong.   

Carbon Dioxide is an extremely important gas in the body and is actually the main regulator of respiration in the brain.  To prove this point when you workout, your CO2 increases, which increases your respiration.  BUT if we are involved in acute or Chronic stress our CO2 levels can shift.  This can then cause a diminished amount of blood flow to the brain and prevent RBCs from Releasing oxygen.  

Both of which can contribute to and cause anxiety.  

Is there a medication you can take to fix your Co2? Unfortunately not, but Dr. Woodall can teach you to retrain your breath to tolerate MORE CO2.  It might feel a little awkward and anxiety provoking at first but it can greatly enhance your ability to stay more balanced.  

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Disclaimer- This is for informational purposes only and is not medical advice.  You're an individual so you need to be INDIVIDUALLY evaluated by a Doctor. 

The Background of Anxiety Part 1

Conventional Medicine Tx for Anxiety-

  • Anti-depressants
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Psychotherapy

My perspective-  Anxiety is like a Portrait-  There is a foreground and a background

Focusing on Anxiety and just anxiety is addressing the foreground without addressing the background.  Which is JUST as important?  


What do I mean by the background?  I mean this:

How's your breathing? 

Are you holding your breath? 

How much tension is in your body?  

How many breaths per minute are you breathing? 

Your breath, HR, BP are autonomically controlled, meaning automatically controlled, but when you shift from something being unconsciously controlled to consciously controlled you switch the background, which CHANGES the FOREGROUND, and the WHOLE PICTURE

If you're interested in addressing the Background and foreground of Anxiety then set up an appointment with my office either by phone or online.  Thank you for listening and please share on twitter and facebook.  #AnxietyPortrait