How A Deep Breath Can Keep You Calm & Help Control Anxiety And Stress

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Apr 04, 2017 07:16 AM EDT

Taking long, slow, deep breaths can induce a calming effect and reduce stress, a new study claimed. The researchers found through an experiment that the mice turned out to be happier after their breathing  slowed down.

Deep breaths can calm down human's nerves, and now the researchers discovered how this process is being managed in the neural pathway of the brain. According to Live Science, the pre-Botzinger complex is an area in the brain that is responsible for breath control. It regulates breathing, from exhaling to gaping and yawning.

In the study, the researchers found in mice's brain a circuit of neurons, which is a little bunch of a bare 350 nerve cells. These cells control the association between breathing and the brain activity that influences how calm or energetic the mice behaved.

The researchers then took off circuit neurons of mice and found that these laboratory animals still breathed normally, but they became unusually calm. They are allowed to pick and kill almost of the 350 neurons and the mice eventually stayed in a more tranquil condition, Dr. Kevin Yackle, lead author of the study said.

Nevertheless, the other neurons were left unharmed, Dr. Yackle, who is also an assistant researcher at the UCSF School of Medicine, added. The findings gave researchers an idea that these may be used to help people with anxiety, stress and panic attacks making them calm. The result details were published in the journal Science.

Taking a deep breath is now considered as a simple and safe way to control anxiety and stress and to attain a calm feeling. However, Dr. Yackle still views a potential development of medicines to treat these conditions.

"In panic disorders, it may be nearly impossible for one to control breathing," Dr. Yackle told the news outlet. "Therefore, a pharmacological approach may be critical for preventing these panic attacks triggered by hyperventilation."

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