4 Breathing Mistakes and How to Correct Them

Unlock optimal well-being by addressing common breathing mistakes. From shallow breathing to unintentionally holding your breath, learn how to enhance respiratory health and boost vitality. Breathing right is essential to your healthy living.

Shallow Breathing: Missing out on full lung capacity

Shallow or chest breathing means taking short breaths that don't fully expand your lungs. This type of breathing can reduce the amount of oxygen that reaches your body's cells and tissues, potentially leading to increased stress and fatigue.

How to Correct It:

Practice deep or diaphragmatic breathing. This involves expanding your diaphragm, letting your abdomen rise and fall rather than your chest. Engage in deep breathing exercises for a few minutes each day to build the habit.

Mouth Breathing: The Unnatural Way

Breathing through the mouth can dry out the throat, reduce saliva, and lead to bad breath and dental problems. It can also bypass the nasal passages, which filter and humidify the air, potentially increasing the risk of respiratory infections.

How to Correct It:

Prioritize nasal breathing during both day and night. If nasal congestion is an issue, consider using saline sprays or consulting a medical professional. Mouth tape, when safely applied, can be used during sleep to promote nasal breathing.

Over-breathing or Hyperventilation: Breathing more than you need

Over-breathing or hyperventilating can lead to dizziness, light-headedness, and even fainting. It happens when you expel carbon dioxide faster than your body produces it, causing an imbalance in blood pH.

How to Correct It:

If you notice you're over-breathing, try to control your breath. Slow, deep breaths can help. Breath awareness exercises or mindfulness meditation can also help regulate breathing patterns over time.

A woman who is breathing after doing physical exericse.

Subconsciously Holding Your Breath

It's common to subconsciously hold our breath during periods of concentration or stress. It is a natural response to danger. We are placed in a fight or flight mode. This can lead to increased tension and anxiety, as well as reduced oxygen supply. There are a few side effects of this, confusion, headaches, shortness of breath, fainting, and panic attacks.

How to Correct It:

Build awareness of your breathing patterns, especially during stressful situations. Set reminders throughout the day to check in with your breathing or use wearable tech that alerts you to holding your breath.


The way we breathe profoundly impacts our health and well-being. By being mindful of these common breathing mistakes and actively correcting them, you can significantly enhance your respiratory health, reduce stress, and boost overall vitality. Remember, proper breathing is as fundamental to our health as regular exercise and a balanced diet. Embrace these strategies today for a more centered, healthier you.