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Personal Experience

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Breathing exercises

Raluca Ghitescu
Language: English
Country: Romania
Typology: health care professionals
Sebastian is a 23 -year-old man with whom I talked in one of the days in which I did my medical apprenticeship during the summer in a respiratory rehabilitation unit . Diagnosed two years ago with allergic asthma, for which he received treatment, was hospitalized for asthma that worsened and treatment has lost effectiveness. More recently, faced with two symptoms: fatigue due to stronger recurrence crisis and anxiety during the night just outside episodes of choking. Anxiety did not correlate with any recent event that would have triggered it Although he was open and jovial at the beginning of the dialogue , it becomes easy to recognize the tense and serious psychological symptoms . He was willing to declare some symptoms but not to make inner revelations . I just draw attention to the attitude , not the symptom , which we regard as normal in the context of respiratory disfunction . From this point I try to open a dialogue focused on the story of life , bringing him into the fact that there is a strong relationship between emotional stress and respiratory function and emotional stimuli that trigger asthmatic crisis can be masked allergic factor , so that crises cause acute stage to be a sudden intense emotional state . It may be necessary psychological intervention for improving mental simptoms and not a change of treatment for allergic factor . He responded in the affirmative when I asked if there was an event in his past that has influenced him strongly emotionally. I want to be cautious and find a way to help him to open up , so do not ask for details at the moment. I ask him to remember how he felt when he had the first difficulty in breathing . He said that the first signs appeared in childhood in the form of frequent colds , but not accompanied by fever with runny nose and chest tightness . I ask to remember if there is an emotional factor and whether it is correlated with episodes of breathlessness and he offers some helpful answers. He said his father had no patience to listen and he spoke in a tone of authority, and if he cried, he used to hit him and threaten him. It seems that repression of crying and the attitude he father took gradually developed an emotional state of insecurity and brought about breathing difficulties and. He found refuge in the stud , took care to be a model student and sought to gain self-confidence through hard work, became addicted to the approval of those around him . But the problem of origin gradually invalidated socially, due to persistent insecurity. Even if he graduated from university, he has a girl friend to whom he didn’t manage to confess this difficulty and has successfully managed to hide it. He is afraid to confess it. He reflects himself in the results of his work, but the suffering of the child manifests itself as asthma. He feels put to the corner, has no other way out , so he is forced to face the truth. During this time I have adopted a relaxed and neutral attitude, I listened with calm , patience and attention trying to gain his trust , and to create a favorable psychological atmosphere , to give him a chance to find his courage alone , I tried to challenge him by offering alternative response and bringing him example cases similar to his. I spoke about the importance of psychotherapy in the treatment of asthma and I recommended him to do daily the exercise of his own acceptance and the exercise of forgiving his father by means of a diary of positive and negative experiences lived in the past and in the present and then I suggested him to try to open up to his girl friend. In this way I wanted to help him realize the importance of a harmonious interior dialogue that he might later develop with a psychologist. After the short daily meetings in which we tried to open a relationship based on trust and friendship, I was proven once again that small gestures make a difference. Suffice to approach other for the attention and openness. From this point , the dialogue turns into a meeting place and community, then instead of healing , because everyone will get something for oneself inevitably, even from the moment of humanity will seek to offer you . I do not know what will happen to Sebastian , he alone will decide what he needs, but I saw him breathing deeply relieved , and that meant for both a big step .

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