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Breathing Exercises for Bronchiectasis

By Rose Erickson ; Updated August 14, 2017

Bronchiectasis is a medical condition that causes your airways to widen and scar. It is typically due to an infection or airway wall injury. Over time, bronchiectasis can prevent the airways from moving air out and in naturally. In addition, they can become clogged with mucus. Breathing exercises can help bring oxygen to your vital organs as well as clear up mucus from your airways.

Forced Expiration Breathing Exercise

Sit up straight and tilt your chin up slightly. Open your mouth and take deep breaths for about two minutes. Slow down your breathing and then hold your breath for three seconds. This allows air to gather below or behind any mucus in your airways. Exhale, blowing out longer than usual but stopping when you feel the urge to cough. Repeat the exercise two more times. Cough normally to dispel mucus.

Deep Breathing Exercise

Lie down on your back or side, relaxing your body as much as possible. Position one hand on your stomach and the other on your chest. Breathe normally through your nose and watch your hands as they rise and fall. Inhale deeply through your nose and fill up your abdomen first with air. Your chest should only rise a little bit at the end of the inhalation. Exhale via your mouth. Repeat the exercise for about 20 minutes.

Three-Part Deep Breathing Exercise

Sit or lie on your side with your eyes closed. Exhale via your nose, expelling the air from the top of your chest all the way down to your diaphragm. Pause for about two seconds at the end of the exhalation and then breathe in slowly through your nose for five seconds. Fill up your belly first and then your torso and chest. Pause again for approximately two seconds and then repeat the exercise up to nine more times.

Complete Natural Breathing Exercise

Stand or sit comfortably with your arms resting at your sides. Inhale via your nose, allowing the lower, middle and then upper section of your lungs to expand. Hold your breath for about two seconds and then exhale slowly and relax your chest and stomach. Continue the exercise for about 10 minutes. For optimal effects, try to do this exercise two times a day.

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