Abnormal Breathing Patterns - Asthma Issues

With over three hundred million sufferers around the world and more than twenty three million right here in America alone, asthma is one of the most common medical issues on the planet. Unlike other types of medical conditions its prevalence has actually increased over the last forty years. Asthma is also a very serious issue that can cause a number of major medical problems including things like unconsciousness, brain damage, and even death in severe cases. More than two hundred and fifty thousand deaths are caused by asthma each year, a fact that highlights its dangers.

With so many different issues connected to asthma, diagnosing the problem is important for anyone to do. One of the key ways to do so is by knowing all of the symptoms, but there are many different asthma symptoms and many can be linked to other issues. Only a doctor can make a concrete diagnosis, but abnormal breathing patterns are certainly among the more common symptoms of the condition. These may be a regularly occurring issue that happens on a chronic basis or could simply accompany flare ups known as asthma attacks. Either way, abnormal breathing patterns can be one of the many signs that asthma may be an issue for you.

There are a few different specific types of abnormal breathing patterns that might occur when you have asthma. In most cases it is a matter of exhalations taking much longer than inhalations. Asthma causes the air ducts within your lungs to narrow through chronic inflammation, and when this occurs it can make it much more difficult to breathe. If the passageway leading out is narrowed in a major way but the one leading in is only slightly narrowed, then it makes perfect sense as to just why these abnormal breathing patterns are such a regular symptom of asthma.

Abnormal breathing patterns are one of the more overlooked symptoms of asthma and often aren't needed for a final diagnosis since the wide range of other symptoms often lead to a diagnosis well before they're even noticed. Still, they are indeed one of the most common symptoms you can experience when you have asthma and one that you'll likely become acutely aware of as time goes on. If you assume that you have asthma for any reason at all be sure that you pay your physician a visit as soon as you can. It's the best way to ensure that you get the upper hand on this dangerous illness.

Different Types of Abnormal Breathing Patterns

There are a wide array of conditions and illnesses that can lead to the development of abnormal breathing patterns. Understanding what these abnormal breathing patterns are may assist you in identifying what's causing them, allowing you to get the treatment you need. To best ascertain when you're experiencing these abnormal breathing patterns, it's important to first understand what normal breathing patterns are like. Normal breathing is typically displayed with slow breaths from the nose that are diaphragmatic and do not take any effort. Normal breathing patterns are also entirely inaudible, which means that there's no wheezing, panting, sight, deep inhalations, or deep exhalations. Now that you know what constitutes normal breathing, it's time to learn about the many different types of abnormal breathing patterns that could affect you.


This is basically referred to as an absence of any breathing, which is typically very temporary. Apnea will occur when you are sleeping, which makes it hard to detect. It occurs when the upper airway collapses at different intervals throughout the night. The effects of this abnormal breathing pattern include abnormal breathing as you sleep and large amounts of tiredness during the day.


This is the term used to refer to normal respiration. This term can sometimes be important when it comes to abnormal breathing patterns as it helps to determine whether or not the breathing issue is due to respiration or something else. If a person is diagnosed as having eupnea, this means that the abnormal breathing pattern is occurring due to some additional problem.


This is an abnormal breathing pattern that's displayed by an issue where the person is able to breathe perfectly normally when in any kind of upright position but is not able to breathe at all when lying down. This is typically a sign that you may be suffering from heart failure.


This is a type of subjective sensation that isn't connected to an external stimulus. You will typically experience dyspnea when you exert yourself sufficiently. If you experience this breathing pattern when resting, it could be cause for concern. Another form of dyspnea is paroxysmal nocturnal dyspnea, which is a shortness of breath that's severe in nature and wakes you up when sleeping.


This constitutes an increased depth to your breathing, which can be difficult to notice. It will occur normally when you are exercising but abnormally when you are experiencing any type of condition where your supply of oxygen isn't adequate.


This is a common type of abnormal breathing pattern that occurs when you have an increased rate and depth of breathing, which will leave you feeling dizzy, weak, unsteady, and lightheaded, due largely to the fact that not enough carbon dioxide is in your blood. The causes could be due to an injury of the head or standard anxiety.


This occurs when your breathing is either too slow or too shallow, which means that the ventilation isn't enough to meet the requirements of your body. When suffering from this abnormal breathing pattern, your blood will have an increased amount of carbon dioxide in it along with a reduction in your overall oxygen levels.


In essence, this condition is displayed by rapid breathing that's abnormal in its pace. Unlike the deep and rapid breaths that occur with hyperventilation, the ones with tachypnea are shallow and rapid. This occurs when you have too much carbon dioxide in your lungs and blood stream. This could be caused by such chronic conditions as anxiety, asthma, or lung disease.

Kussmaul's Respiration

When affected by this condition, you will experience breathing with an increased rate and depth that causes a deep sighing type of respiration. This abnormal breathing pattern is typically due to the development of metabolic acidosis, which occurs when there is too much acid in your body. The changes in your breathing will take place over a lengthy period of time and could be due to diabetes.

Cheyne-Stokes Respiration

This abnormal breathing pattern is signified by an increase in both frequency and volume of your respiration that's gradual. Once this increase occurs, the frequency and volume decreases before you finally experience apnea, or an absence of breathing, for anywhere from 10-30 seconds. The pattern will then repeat. The causes of this condition could be lesions on the brainstem, heart failure, or simple issues caused by altitude sickness.

Biot's Respiration

This is very similar to the aforementioned condition with the main difference being that the volume of your respiration remains consistent while your frequency will change. The 10-30 seconds of apnea that's experienced with Cheyne-Stokes respiration also occurs with this condition. This abnormal breathing pattern is seen in patients who suffer from meningitis.

Central Neurogenic Hyperventilation

This is hyperventilation that's persistent, which means that it's constant. You will experience the increased depth and rate of breathing that's seen with standard hyperventilation. The causes of this more severe form include a serious head trauma or a cerebral hypoxia.

Central Neurogenic Hypoventilation

This condition occurs when the respiratory centers within your brainstem aren't responding properly to the stimuli that typically gets these centers to respond. Similarly to central neurogenic hyperventilation, this abnormal breathing pattern can be caused by a head trauma or cerebral hypoxia.

CO2 and Cerebral Blood Flow

CO2, or carbon dioxide, is essential in the regulation of your cerebral blood flow, which is the blood flow that occurs in the cerebrum portion of the brain. Both an increase or decrease in the amount of CO2 found within the cerebral blood flow could lead to a range of breathing issues that would likely require treatment. Traumatic brain injuries can increase the amount of CO2 in your blood, while mechanical hyperventilation can reduce the amount of CO2 in the blood. In the event that you notice any of the aforementioned abnormal breathing patterns, don't hesitate to seek treatment.