Doctors and medical staff around the world are learning and sharing new techniques in order to help slow the spread of the virus and ease symptoms for those who are sick.
Sarfaraz Munshi, an urgent care doctor at Queens Hospital, recorded a video showing breathing techniques that doctors in the UK are teaching to COVID-19 patients.
He posted the video for his mother, who was suffering from Coronavirus symptoms…
Munshi says that, ideally, patients begin to do the exercise at the start of the illness and encourages people to practice the breathing technique before symptoms even start.
Here’s the written explanation:
To do the exercise, which was developed by Sue Elliott, the director of nursing at the Partnership of East London Cooperatives, patients are instructed to take a deep breath, then hold it for five seconds before releasing.
They should repeat the process five more times, and on the sixth time instead of breathing out, they should cough forcefully, covering their mouth in the process. The entire cycle should be done twice, and then patients are instructed to lay on their stomachs and breathe deeply for the next ten minutes.
Munshi explains that “the majority of your lung is on your back, not on your front. So, by lying on your back, you’re closing off more of the smaller airways and this is not good during the period of infection.”
Medical experts say that by breathing deeply, you are able to get the lower part of your lungs to expand, dislodging mucus build-up that is then loosened further with the cough. By lying down on your stomach, gravity takes over and helps to further loosen secretions.