Some patients that come to Air Physiotherapy do so because they are experiencing something unusual with their breathing. It no longer feels right and the rhythm of how they’re breathing is out of kilter. This is called breathing pattern disorder, and requires respiratory physiotherapy – specifically breathing pattern re-education – to resolve. By seeing one of our specialists, you will be taught how to breathe optimally as they are experts in identifying and treating breathing pattern disorders (BPDs).

You will need an initial consultation either in person, or virtually, before treatment can begin. If you have seen any other health professionals regarding your symptoms, it is really useful to have copies of their findings beforehand. We have a handy patient portal which you can upload clinic reports to.

What to expect from your first breathing pattern re-education appointment?

Your appointment will begin with some questions from your physiotherapist so they can gain a better understanding of what you are experiencing. They might ask you:

  • How long you’ve been experiencing difficulties – when your symptoms began
  • Details about what exactly you’re experiencing – what your symptoms feel like
  • If you have tried any treatments or techniques to relieve your symptoms – and if any of them have made a difference to you
  • If you are taking any medications – and if so, what they are
  • Details of any tests you may have had – and the results

Your physiotherapist will then examine you

This is necessary for them to properly assess why you’re experiencing your symptoms so they can use the right treatment techniques. They will:

  • Possibly want to begin by assessing you as you lie down
  • Observe your breathing in detail. Please do try to relax and breathe as normally as you can for you at this point
  • They may put their hands on your chest to feel for movement, or ask you to position your hands on your chest or tummy
  • Possibly ask you to sit / stand up or climb the stairs so they can observe you while you move, although for most this happens in subsequent sessions
  • Please be assured that at no point will you be asked to do anything that will cause you any pain or discomfort

Exercises for breathing pattern re-education

The next step is for your physiotherapist to teach you your first breathing exercise. They will also advise you on how to manage your symptoms

  • You will be shown how to perform a breathing exercise which will help get your breathing back on track
  • The physiotherapist will tell you how, when and how often you should perform the exercise
  • You will be given a programme of exercises to follow which will need to be practiced at home
  • There may be additional information that you will be given or emailed that you can refer to at home, including videos

Your next appointment

You should expect to ask to return for a follow-up appointment in 1-2 weeks

  • This is to ensure that things are progressing as they should be – you are performing the exercise correctly and that you are finding an improvement in your condition
  • It is important to fix any issues early on
  • It may also be appropriate to progress your treatment – your physiotherapist will be able to assess this
  • During your second appointment your physiotherapist might also discuss the longer-term management of your condition with you. This is important to prevent it from occurring again.

Please rest assured that we are specialists in helping identify and treat breathing pattern disorders. We can help ease your troublesome symptoms and get you back on track to breathing better.

 📱0207 971 1464