Breathing Exercises for Insomnia

Approximately 10% to 15% of adults suffer from chronic insomnia.  Both central and autonomic nervous system hyperarousal have been strongly implicated in the pathophysiology of insomnia, and, as such, relaxation techniques have been explored as treatment for insomnia for several decades. Relaxation training comprises a diverse group of practices (e.g., progressive muscle relaxation, diaphragmatic breathing) to reduce “somatic tension” or “intrusive thoughts.” When employed during pre-sleep periods, these therapies are thought to counteract the cognitive and physiologic mechanisms that initiate and perpetuate insomnia, and are recommended as “standard” treatment for insomnia by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM).

Here are few breathing exercises for insomnia that you can try :

  • 4-7-8 Breathing Technique – Inhale quietly through your nose for 4 seconds. Hole your breath for a count of 7. Exhale completely through the mouth for a count of 8.
  • Alternate Nostril Breathing – Close the right nostril with your right thumb, and inhale through the left nostril for 4 seconds. Hold your breath for 4 seconds. Close the left nostril, and exhale through your right for 6 seconds.
  • The Bellows Breath – Breathe in by inhaling deeply, filling your lungs with air. Once you inhale fully, exhale with great force making hissing sounds. One round of Bellows Breathing consists of 30 exhalations.

Reference :

10 Comments Add yours

  1. richlakin says:

    This is useful thanks. I know insomnia sufferers

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Deep breathing is useful in that it helps to slow down the various functions in your body that can keep you tense and anxious. Allowing yourself to deep breathe will slow your heart rate and make it easier to drift off to sleep.


  2. This is the method that I had read about previously. It really works.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Breathing exercises can help you fall asleep faster through two main mechanisms: First, they calm the central nervous system. The slow, deep breathing lets your brain know that it’s time to calm down, and this leads to an all-over slowing. Your heart rate and breathing slow and your blood pressure may drop, all as part of the relaxation process. Deep breathing can also serve as a mindfulness practice. If you’re focused on your breathing, you’re no longer being distracted by your brain’s cruel habit of, well, not zipping it when you need it to.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. True, I can feel everything begin to slow down as I focus on my breathing.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Garima says:

        Yes 🙌🏼🙌🏼
        You are on the right track. Bless you. Sending you good vibes.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thanks 🙏🏽 sending some good vibes back to you.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Garima says:


        Liked by 1 person

  3. Wyclif Musau says:

    Keep up the good work Garima, information is power!😍

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Garima says:

      Thank you for inspiring me today yet again. Will keep writing.


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