Relaxing smooth muscle is how Buteyko breathing naturally improves conditions including: High blood pressure, Asthma, Headaches, IBS, Constipation, Diarrhoea, Reflux, Coughing.
Smooth muscle surrounds and lines all hollow structures in the body, including the airways, blood vessels, bowel, bladder and uterus. A slight increase in carbon dioxide serves to relax smooth muscle. In the case of smooth muscle lining the blood vessels, this will dilate or widen the arteries, improving circulation and helping lower blood pressure, and the effect on the blood vessels in the head will reduce the incidence of headaches. For the respiratory system, relaxation of the bronchi and smaller airways, bronchioles, will improve airflow and markedly reduce airway spasms associated with asthma. In the case of the bowel wall, relaxed smooth muscle means relief from symptoms of Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Constipation and Reflux.
A study on people with Asthma, reported in the Medical Journal of Australia showed that after 3 months people practising the Buteyko breathing method had decreased their requirement for reliever medication by 90 per cent and the use of inhaled corticosteroids by 49 per cent. Buteyko exercises can have remarkable effects on a variety of conditions as well as helping to prevent a host of others.