British Lung Foundation
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Breathlessness and relaxation

Cambridge University Hospitals, an NHS Foundation Trust, has issued a document that I have found really helpful so I thought I would share it. I have had it checked by a computer expert and he has declared it safe. I hope it can help some of you.

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18 Replies

That is a very useful article and I'm sure it will help a lot of people auntymary. Thank you for putting it up.

On a lighter note, after reading it I did tell my husband that he unwittingly performs relaxation exercises several times a day lol.

Lynne xx

Haha - mine too.


By someone who knows what they are doing looking at the link and checking its safety before I posted it on here - simples!

No need the moderators do all that much simpler :D

As far as I am aware the moderator does not check links we post. The trouble is that links are posted on here and people open them without any checks having been undertaken, which can be dangerous. And I fail to see how leaving it to someone else to check, after posting, is simpler. However, I was merely pointing out that this one was safe, and that is really all that matters, isn't it? :) .

Only my personal opinion that it was under part 3 of Moderation blog that simplified use of this site off to relax with a good book :-)

"3. Links to websites outside the UK will no longer be allowed".

The last time I looked Addenbrookes Hospital was within the UK. Enjoy your book. :)

That was really interesting Aunty Mary - thank you for sharing.

Here is a little video which you may like. Choose the third video down (a Meditation). The lady is Ruth Kaye and she works for the NHS at the oncology unti at St James Hospital Leeds. She is a spiritual healer. I have personally had the good fortune to attend some of her group sessions and had some one to ones with her. I hope you find the short meditaion relaxing.

Love C XXX

thanks cofdrop

Thanks AuntyMary - this is so well explained, very helpful, xjean


thahk you that is very interesting and it works


and the other factsheets are here ...

thanks auntymary

I have started suffering extreme anxiety the last 6 months or so and, to be honest, it is ruining what little life I have (I have advanced emphysema). My anxiety goes from zero to 100 very quickly and sometimes it's impossible to even try to relax and gain control as my upper body seems to "seize up" and my lungs go into overdrive causing me to hyperventilate. I have very recently started to try certain techniques at the very outset of anxiety, such as breathing in through the nose to the count of 2 and out through the mouth to the count of 4, which sometimes helps. I also have lorazepam (half a 1mg tab under the tongue in emergencies) and at first, just knowing I always have them ready at hand if I needed them (some in the loo, the kitchen and lounge), they helped enormously but recently their effectiveness has started to wane (it's not through overuse, as I only use them maybe 2/3 times a week, only in extreme emergency).Because of my anxiety I have started using coping methods, i.e. not answering the door or phone if I am even slightly breathless, in fact, avoiding virtually anything, and it's had a negative effect as not doing them now means I can't do them at all now without the anxiety rising. Anxiety has gone me firmly in its grip now and I just don't know how to get rid of it. I've read countless articles on it, such as the one posted here, and must know virtually everything there is to know about it, but it still doesn't help. Does anyone know of any drugs that could help with this (apart from the emergency use of lorazepam)? I am going to arrange a doctor's visit this week (I have explained all this to my copd nurses many times, but their visits are intermittent and they never do anything about it), but, to be honest, I find my surgery pretty useless and feel as though I've been abandoned in a way. Can anyone help with suggestions?

Anxiety can be very life-limiting. It is a dreadful thing to suffer. Perhaps you need someone to sit down and review your medication with you. A friend of mine had to stop using Spiriva because it caused depression in her. I can't use Prednisolone because of the anxiety and depression it causes for me. I hope they can sort this out. If your GP surgery is not helpful perhaps you could ask for a referral to speak with someone at the hospital about it? Or ring the BLF helpline tomorrow. Good luck. x

Hi auntymary, thanks so much for your response to my comment. It's always reassuring when someone understands my situation. I haven't arranged the doc's visit yet as my son wants to be here and his working pattern is a bit haywire at the moment so once I can pin him down I'll try and get the doc to come when it suits us (ha, ha - some chance!) and get him to look at my numerous meds. I had already read some info on my drugs and found that 3 of them have a possible side effect of anxiety and depression! It makes you wonder, especially as the one I use for emergency panic attacks also has the side effect of anxiety and depression!! Thanks once again, I much appreciate your input. I did, I thought, leave a reply for you earlier, but it's not showing up. So, if there are ultimately 2 replies for you, apologies! Libby x

Hi Libby

I can hear the anguish in your post and having been there myself to the point of becoming agoraphobic I feel for you. I agree with you there is a lack of help around, and like you, I read lots of stuff and basically found my way through. My breakthrough came when I spoke to a young man at MIND and he seemed to be the first person who understood, this was because he himself suffered from anxiety and panics. He sent me an extract by Trevor Powell based on cognitive behaviour therapy and it was my savour, and now when it comes back to bite me on the bum that's where I turn.

You have read lots about this subject, so please excuse me if you know this stuff already.

Using benzodiazapines (loraazepam,diazepam etc) are only useful short term - long term they are bad news. They do not work after some time and are hurrendous for some people to withdraw from. Believe me.

You must also know that avoidance is not a coping method and, as I think you have already found out, will limit your life even more. Short term you will get relief but long term it will stop you doing stuff. Don't forget I couldn't even go out for a while - so I'm not trying to be harsh but realistic.

You might want to ask your doc to refer you to a phychologist for cognitive behaviour therapy (bit thin on the ground though). It's about taking small achievable steps, which will be difficult to do. eg. Get up to answer the door (doesn't matter if you don't get there - don't beat yourself up - give yourself a pat on the back for getting as far as you did). It's not gonna happen overnight, but as long as you go in the right direction.

I know that overwhelming feeling this thing has you well and truly in it's grip but it HASN'T. You can and will become more in control of it than it is of you.

This fight or flight response is there for a reason as you know, but when it comes at inaporopriate times (ie there is no real danger on perceived) the trick is not to run away, nor is it to fight - it is to as they say 'feel the fear and do it anyway'. It's not easy and it takes time, but you sound like a tough lady. Very brave too - it takes some doing to post this on here (I hope that doesn't sound patronising - it certainly isn't meant to be.

Libby sweet you can speak to someone in relation to anxiety at BLF, but if you need to speak to someone right away you should be able to at No Panic

You have nothing to lose and may find it helpful - I do hope so.

Good luck Libby - let us know how things progress.

With love


Hi cofdrop, thank you so much for your reply to my comment. You've given me a lot of info and, most of all, reassurance, which is probably the best thing anyone could do for a sufferer of anxiety. So I am very appreciative of the time you've taken over this, I only discovered this forum a week or so ago and already it has helped me, particularly knowing I am not alone - not that I would wish any of our problems on anyone else!! Anxiety is a dreadful affliction and not so long ago I would have thought anyone suffering from it was a bit pathetic and would have thought "pull yourself together woman!", so it's very easy now for me to see that's probably what a lot of people think about me now, which doesn't help! I will be having a look at nopanic and, hopefully, it will help me. Thanks so much. LIbby x

Your most welcome libby. Oh that dreaded 'pull yourself together' the most pointless statement anyone can make to someone with anxiety - if it was that easy why would they think you would go through this stuff. ggrrrrrr.

Really libby it doesn't matter what anyone thinks who are being negative - their opinions do not matter - what matters is you get to the other side of this. I know you feel quite alone, but many more people than you would imagine suffer from anxiety and will be rooting for you as you can see from the comments from your friends above.

You can pm me if you want a chat. Please know I will always answer - it might not be straight away struggling with persistent inf, but I will defo reply.

Loads a love


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