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Slow Breathing May Soothe Pain

http://www.foxnews.com

The simple practice of slow breathing may help people deal with the physical and emotional reactions to moderate pain, a small study suggests. Researchers say the findings, published in the journal Pain, offer support for the idea that yoga-style breathing exercises and meditation can help ease chronic pain. The study gauged pain responses among 27 women with the chronic pain condition fibromyalgia and 25 healthy women the same age. Researchers found that when they had the women perform slow breathing, it dampened their reactions to a moderately painful stimulus — brief pulses of heat from a probe placed on the palm. Overall, the women rated the pain intensity as lower and reported less emotional discomfort when they slowed their normal breathing rate down by half. The benefit was greater and more consistent among the healthy study participants than those with fibromyalgia. However, the findings suggest that breathing techniques could offer an additional way to deal with fibromyalgia or other types of chronic pain, according to lead researcher Dr. Alex J. Zautra, a psychology professor at Arizona State University in Tempe.

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Slow Breathing May Soothe Pain