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What should I do if I end up crying, and I find myself struggling to breathe?

262 Answers
Last Updated: 04/10/2021 at 9:20am
1 Tip to Feel Better
United States
Moderated by

Alex DS Ellis, MA, LMFT

Marriage & Family Therapist

Feeling depressed or anxious can be so overwhelming. I want to help you feel better and be able to enjoy life. You are not alone and you deserve emotional support.

Top Rated Answers
February 17th, 2018 3:38am
I would say that the best thing to do if you can is to go outside and take a break. Another thing you could do is find someone you feel like you can vent to, you could also try to not think about anything to try and calm yourself down. There is not just one way to do this.
February 25th, 2018 1:12pm
look around you. find 5 things you can see, 4 things you can touch, 3 things you can hear, 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste.
March 1st, 2018 6:35pm
There is nothing wrong with crying and if you struggle with breathe, try to calm down and breathe deeply through your nose than exhale through your mouth.
March 10th, 2018 7:24pm
Ohhhh, I know this problem well, the gasping, the croaking for breath, panicking that you will never be able to take that next breath, but there is a way through this. Remember that it is ok to cry, it is ok to really scream with rage or sorrow, we are all human and this is out way of getting through and crying is one of the best releases for pent up human emotion there is but when we cry we heave out breath and forget we then need to gulp in air and breathe. Slowly try and breathe in through the nose and also out through the nose too, the controlled channel of air means that you need to concentrate for a second and that slowly breaks the cycle. You Can Do It! slowly. . .
March 14th, 2018 6:12pm
The key thing to do in this situation is to work on controlling your breathing. You will want to count your breaths and focus on taking deep, slow breaths.
March 30th, 2018 5:50pm
You are probably having a panic attack so you need to contact someone close to you or someone that is medically trained to help. Slow down your breathing and try to count your fingers to make you focus on something else.
April 1st, 2018 12:57am
I would sit down, take a deep breath, and think about my future and a better time. After I was a little calmer, I'd sublimate.
April 7th, 2018 6:10pm
There are many guided breathing exercises you can try to help slow down and get control of your breathing. Here is the link to a 7 Cups form about breathing exercises:
April 13th, 2018 2:27pm
If you have your phone on you, try Googling 'breathing gifs'. There are plenty there that you can time your breathing to, which helps relax you at the same time.
April 20th, 2018 3:25am
Try some relaxation techniques, such as visualising you're in a safe and peaceful place. You can imagine what it feels, smells, looks, hears like. Try to focus on that mental image, and take deep breaths slowly.
April 21st, 2018 2:21pm
sit down close my eyes (personal preference : headphones with music) relax my mind clear my mind of thoughts and just focus on breathing
April 29th, 2018 7:44am
Take deep breaths. Try extending the in breath to flood increased levels of oxygen around your brain, which should help you to relax
May 2nd, 2018 12:26pm
Find your safe space, drink some water then slowly breath in through the nose and out through the mouth.
May 13th, 2018 11:57am
I know this can sound a bit dumb, but try to focus on your breathing, slow down, count to three as you inhale and again as you exhale. If you can, go wash yourself, maybe go outside to take some fresh air, put on relaxing music and try to think of something else. I sometimes breath inside of a plastic bag, a kind of tiny one, I dont really know if this one is good or bad, but it helps me focus on my breathing and such. Good luck, and have a great day!
May 18th, 2018 2:06pm
Take deep breaths. I've found that it helps to inhale for 4 counts, hold for 7 counts, and release for 8 counts.
May 20th, 2018 1:56am
Wash your face with cold water, or even better take a shower if it's possible. Take deep breaths. Listen to calm music.
June 1st, 2018 10:11am
You should try your best to stay calm and take deep breaths in and out, sit and convince yourself that everything will be okay.
June 1st, 2018 2:00pm
Talk yourself down in your head. Like, "It's ok...calm down." do meditative breathing excercises. 1...2....3...4...5..
June 1st, 2018 11:50pm
Take a minute to calm yourself down. This feeling won't last forever even though its feels that way. Count to 10 and inhale. Count to 10 and exhale.
June 3rd, 2018 8:18am
Take a minute or a few seconds to calm down and breathe, try not to panic and just focus on your breath, also look at your surroundings and describe them in your head.
June 6th, 2018 4:41pm
First, I would suggest that you take a deep breath. Focus on your surroundings, whether that's the cold floor touching your feet, the warm water running through your fingers; whatever it is. Breathe deeply and slowly through your nose and out your mouth. Those are grounding techniques that I've learned over the years
June 8th, 2018 11:24am
You could try doing the "in 5 out 7" breathing technique. You breathe in through your nose slowly and consistently for 5 seconds and out through your mouth slowly and consistently for 7 seconds. You can also tap along each second with your finger if it helps you.
June 10th, 2018 2:05am
Make sure that you ask yourself who caused you so much pain and make sure that what your dealing with does not define you
June 21st, 2018 8:50am
I know it could be hard to be in such a situation. But you should learn to relax and feel calm in such situations. You should remain mindful . If you cant initially just try to do. Whenever you are in such a situation try to relax as much as you can. S lowly this will become your habit and you dont have to struggle then. And yeah most imortantly you should consult a proffesional for assurance because breathing problem could be due to some physical reasons too.
June 21st, 2018 1:59pm
Take a few big deep breaths and concentrate only on them.
June 23rd, 2018 2:49am
Sometimes it helps to focus on the room around you. Focus on something other than the fact that you are struggling to breathe. Once you have calmed down a bit, focus on taking breaths deep in your body. Tell yourself that you will be okay and you can calm down. It may take a while, but it is possible.
June 23rd, 2018 8:22am
Always think of the person you love/ the people who love you and think about good memories and stuff like that..It helps with the breathing..I had a friend like you who experienced the same thing..
June 25th, 2018 6:41pm
Count from 1 to 3 or 3 to 1. Or any number provided it is not too long. This tricks the brain into focusing on the logical process instead of whatever stress is going on in your environment or in your mind.
June 27th, 2018 8:41pm
Grounding techniques. Try to focus on one of the following; touch, taste, smell, sight and sound. List 3 things for each. Or use hot or cold sensations, an ice cube in the palm of your hand to keep you in the present moment etc. Try taking deep long breaths, even into a paper or plastic bag if you have one. Call for help if you feel out of control.
June 30th, 2018 3:46pm
Think of someone who you’d like to be there with you and imagine a moment with him. It will smooth your heartbeat