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Reduce the effects of stress in just 15 minutes a day…
The StressEraser is an award-winning, FDA-regulated medical device that helps you relax your body and quiet your mind – through real-time biofeedback and guided breathing - in as little as 15 minutes. It’s portable, cordless, cost-effective, non-invasive and very easy to use.
Please Note -- If you are taking beta blockers or using a pacemaker you may not receive a valid reading. Also users with chronic low circulation or low finger temperature may not receive a valid reading.What is the StressEraser used for?
The StressEraser is intended for stress reduction, relaxation and relaxation training.Is there a computer connection?
You don’t ever have to hook the StressEraser to a computer. The StressEraser is completely self contained, discrete and portable – so you can use it wherever you wish.
How does it know I am taking a breath?
By watching your pulse rate wave, you will see that your breathing has an immediate effect on your heart rate. In fact, the reason we call your wave the StressEraser Breathwave® is that it allows you to see the immediate impact that breathing has on your nervous system.How long does it take?
The minimum recommended session length is 5-7 minutes. For long-lasting therapeutic benefits, we recommend at least 15 minutes a day.What is the StressEraser measuring?
The minimum recommended session length is 5-7 minutes. For long-lasting therapeutic benefits, we recommend at least 15 minutes a day.How is the StressEraser different from a heart rate monitor?
Unlike a heart rate monitor, the StressEraser doesn’t just measure your pulse. It measures the distance between pulses, a much more complex measurement. The StressEraser has a patent pending on a type of HRV biofeedback called “intra-wave consecutive heart periods,” or CHP. This biofeedback allows you to use your breathing to control your heart rate. And it tells you whether or not you are doing it correctly. This is something you otherwise cannot be sure of. Heart rate monitors do not provide this sort of feedback.Does insurance cover the StressEraser?
Coverage is not guaranteed, but some insurers have covered the StressEraser in the past. It is up to you to submit the claim to your insurer.How big is the StressEraser
The StressEraser has a very compact design. It comfortably fits in the palm of your hand, and can easily be carried in your pocket, purse, or traveling bag. The StressEraser dimensions are:
How heavy is the StressEraser?
- 3 7/8 inches long
- 2 1/2 inches wide
- 3/4 of an inch deep
The StressEraser only weighs 4 ounces so you can bring it anywhere you go.How durable is the StressEraser?
Like cell phones and other electronic devices, the StressEraser should be handled with care. It comes with a stylish case to protect the screen from scratches when you carry it.Does it come with batteries?
Yes. The StressEraser is powered by 2 AAA batteries. Batteries are included with your purchase.How does it work?
From beat to beat, tiny changes in your heart rate reflect the activity of your stimulating and pacifying nerves. The StressEraser displays these tiny changes as waves on the screen. You can control these changes in heart rate with your breathing. The StressEraser guides you to slow down your breathing and then it gives you feedback on how your breathing is affecting your body. It gives you a point for each good relaxing breath you take. So the more points you get, the more relaxed you feel. By the end of a session you feel calm, focused, and relaxed.What does the breath button do?
The Breathe button will help you if you are having trouble scoring points. A program helps you experiment with different exhale counts. If you have already found a breathing pattern that leads to 2 or 3 square waves, you don't need to use the Breathe button.How does StressEraser measure my wave?
A highly sensitive infrared light sensor detects tiny changes in the rate with which blood pulses through your fingertip. The wave-like movement of your pulse rate is then displayed in real time on the screen.How do I read my Breathwave®?
There are three simple things you should be paying attention to: the height and length of each wave, the smoothness of the wave, and how often you make long and smooth waves.Why does my wave suddenly grow bigger or smaller?
As your pulse rate decreases, your StressEraser dynamically rescales and resizes the display area. If it didn't, your wave might sometimes expand off the screen or become too small to see. The StressEraser rescales to always provide the best view of your wave.Will the StressEraser tell me how stressed I am?
No. The StressEraser is not a stress meter. In fact, it is quite the opposite. The StressEraser tells you whether or not your body and mind are relaxing and guides you to get into a relaxed state.What is biofeedback?
It's a way of using specialized devices to help people learn how to control body functions that are typically thought of as involuntary - for example heart rate or muscle tension. In the case of the StressEraser you are using your breathing to control changes in your heart rate and your stimulating and pacifying nerves. The StressEraser's visual and audio cues let you know how effectively you are doing that. Once you learn to use your breathing to control changes in your physiology, you can use that skill to achieve deep relaxation.What does breathing have to do with stress?
When you experience stress, your breathing becomes shallow, rapid and irregular. There are numerous studies highlighting the benefits of slow breathing. The StressEraser helps you restore a slower, deeper and more regular breathing pattern that is unique to you. This is known as your resonant frequency. By breathing at this rate you can engage your body's natural relaxation response.Why do I need a device to tell me how to breathe?
Without the device it is difficult to tell whether your body is benefiting from your breathing. Also, it is really hard to do slow breathing for 15 minutes without having something to focus on. Our minds tend to wander and we forget to do the breathing. Then we stop relaxing. With the StressEraser you stop getting points the minute you stop relaxing. This helps you maintain focus and get the full benefit from your breathing.Who should use the StressEraser?
The StressEraser is intended to be used by any adult or young adult who suffers from stress. If you have a stress-related condition, consult your healthcare professional. The StressEraser is intended to be used for relaxation, relaxation training, and stress reduction. Please note, the FDA has not approved the StressEraser for the treatment of any condition.Does the StressEraser have any side effects?
The StressEraser involves no medication and has no long-term side effects. In the short term, some people have experienced mild anxiety due to watching their physiology in real-time (known as biofeedback-induced anxiety), sleepiness, dizziness, finger numbness, or headache. The side effects are mild and short lived.
Make sure your breathing depth and pace are always comfortable. Stop using the StressEraser immediately if you experience discomfort. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery during or immediately after StressEraser use.Is the StressEraser completely safe?
There is no clinical evidence of unsafe or ineffective outcomes from StressEraser use. When used as described in the Owner's Manual, the StressEraser has no known safety concerns. Here are some times for safe usage of the StressEraser:
What if I have a heart condition or if I have trouble breathing - can I still use the StressEraser?
- Do not use the StressEraser for any purpose other than that described in the in the Owner's Manual, and instructional videos. Handle with care!
- Do not open or tamper with the StressEraser in any way. This will void the warranty and could affect the accuracy.
- Before using the StressEraser, review all information in the instructional videos, Owner's Manual, and any other information included in the packaging.
Yes, with permission from your physician. If your heart condition is treated with medication that regulates your heart rate or a with a pacemaker it may be difficult for you to benefit from the StressEraser.
Proper use of the StressEraser requires breathing. Special patient populations who are challenged by breathing should consult with a physician before using the StressEraser. These might include:
Does the StressEraser interact with any medications?
- People with conditions that cause them to frequently become lightheaded or short of breath
- People with lung or breathing conditions such as asthma
- People with irregular heartbeats, regulated heartbeats, or certain heart conditions
- People taking certain medications that regulate heart rate or the blood flow
The StressEraser is non-invasive and there are no known contraindications. However, medications that regulate the heart rate may make it more difficult for you to benefit from the StressEraser because some medications make it more difficult for you to manipulate the StressEraser Breathwave.What if I have low circulation in my fingers?
People with low circulation or Raynaud's Syndrome may have trouble getting a pulse reading. To troubleshoot this problem, you might try warming your index finger, perhaps by running it under warm water. If that doesn't work, try using other fingers until you get a reading.Watching my StressEraser BreathWave makes me anxious. What should I do?
Biofeedback-induced anxiety is not uncommon. Some people naturally become anxious when watching their mind and body feedback in real time. Anxiety may occur if you have difficulty learning to use the StressEraser. If you become anxious, stop using the StressEraser. Try again later when you feel relaxed, maybe after you have exercised. Thy this the first few times you use the StressEraser.
Another suggestion: try breathing slowly for a couple of minutes without looking at the screen. After a few minutes, begin looking at the screen when you start inhaling. The start to sync you exhale with the triangles.Can the StressEraser help me relax before sleep?
The StressEraser is the drug-free way to erase stress built up throughout the day. With the StressEraser you can stop the worrying thoughts that sometimes race through your mind at night and won't let you fall asleep. In just 15 minutes your mind is quiet and you are ready for a restful and relaxing night.Can the StressEraser help me deal with intense stress?
Yes, the StressEraser was designed to help you become calm even during an intensely stressful life event. But it may be difficult to use when you are experiencing intense stress, especially the first time you use it. When you are first learning to use the StressEraser, try it when you are already feeling calm or are in a neutral situation. Once you have gotten the hang of it, you can try it before, during, or after a stressful event.
When you have an extremely stressful situation, your mind dwells on some painful thought regarding the situation. The key to dealing with intense stress is to use the StressEraser until you notice random, non-stressful thoughts popping into your mind. Continue to use the StressEraser for at least 30 more points after that, and you will find you can feel calm and relaxed after your session is over.Can the StressEraser help me deal with everyday stress?
Learning to relax with the StressEraser is one of many important ways to help manage your everyday stress. We recommend that you combine regular StressEraser sessions with healthy living practices. Talk to your healthcare professional about how the following can help you with stress:
What should I do if I get a headache or feel light-headed while using the StressEraser?
- Activities and exercise
- Healthy eating
- Regular sleep
- Yoga and meditation
- Counseling and therapy
Take a break from using the StressEraser. Taking too deep a breath can cause you to feel light-headed or have a headache. Comfortable slow breathing is more important than deep breathing. So try again breathing in gently. For more helpful information please go to StressEraser Breathing Tips.What should I do if I get drowsy or fall asleep?
End your session. It probably means that you have achieved a state of deep relaxation.What should I do if I get nausea?
This may happen while using the StressEraser in a moving vehicle. If you get nauseous, take a break from using the StressEraser. Try it again once you reach your destination.What if my finger or hand goes numb or starts to ache?
Take a break from using the StressEraser. If this happens frequently, try using it for shorter sessions. Or try resting it in your right hand, in your lap, or on a pillow.What if I get eyestrain?
Try using your StressEraser for shorter sessions. Or close your eyes and follow the sound cues. You will hear a tone each time a triangle appears. The pitch of the tone tells you the score of your previous wave.
The Balance of Your Nervous System
Your Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) controls functions in the body that normally occur unconsciously, such as heart rate, respiration rate and digestion. This system is responsible for keeping your body in a regulated, balanced state. This balance is created by the constant back and forth nature of the two primary branches of your ANS: the Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS) and the Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS)
Your SNS is involved in mobilization responses that enable "fight or flight" behaviors known as the stress response [Fig. 1]. Your PNS is involved in "rest and renew" behaviors that enable growth and restoration and are known as the relaxation response [Fig. 2]. Parasympathetic activity is regulated by your vagus nerve. The vagus nerve is the longest nerve in your body, extending from the brain stem to the base of the spine and to several organs and your heart. When the vagus nerve activates, the relaxation response is turned on. When the vagus nerve is inactive, the relaxation response is also inactive.
Typical functions of the SNS and PNS are detailed below:
Sympathetic Nervous System (SNS)
Your "fight or flight" or stress response can become activated by both major and minor stressors. Even states of excitement and emotions such as anger and fear activate the SNS. When your SNS is active it is characterized by:
Parasympathetic Nervous System (PNS)
- Increased heart rate
- Increased cardiac output
- Increased blood pressure
- Increased breathing rate
- Increased muscle contraction
- Constriction of capillaries under skin surface
- Increased secretion of adrenaline (epinephrine), noradrenaline (norepinephrine), and cortisol
- Increased brainwave activity
- Increased output of blood cholesterol
- Increased blood sugar
- Increased insulin levels
- Inhibited digestion and elimination
- Weakened the immune system (long-term)
- Inhibited of cell growth (long-term)
The primary pacifying nerve in your body, the vagus nerve, mediates the activity of the "rest and renew" or relaxation response. Overall, activation of the PNS promotes calming so you can recuperate from day-to-day stress, keeping the ANS in balance. When your PNS is active it is characterized by:
- Decreased heart rate
- Decreased cardiac output
- Decreased blood pressure
- Decreased breathing rate
- Released tension in tight muscles
- Dilated of blood vessels
- Released dopamine, serotonin, and acetylcholine
- Enhanced cognition
- Stabilized blood flow to muscles
- Increased oxygen to the blood
- Increased energy storage
- Enhanced digestion and elimination
- Strengthened immune system (long-term)
- Promotion of cell growth (long-term)
Ideally, the SNS and PNS operate in an evenly balanced manner, keeping your body in a state of physiological homeostasis [Fig. 3]. Although there are exceptions, in general when SNS activity increases, PNS activity decreases [Fig. 4]. In particular, when SNS activity increases, the activity of the vagus nerve decreases. SNS changes in your body are all extremely important, particularly if you are in a life threatening situation in which you have to fight or escape. When the stressful moment has passed, the PNS response kicks in to relax your body and return it to a balanced state.
Allostatic Load, Cumulative Effects of An Unbalanced System
Unfortunately, our nervous systems have not yet adapted to the type of ongoing stress we face today. As you can imagine, there is a huge difference between the constant stress of 21st century life and our ancestor's sudden need to flee from danger. However, ongoing minor stresses such as traffic jams, work demands, problems at home, or financial concerns tend to build up. Emotions such as anger, fear and anxiety will cause your SNS to activate. As stress accumulates, your stress response remains active for longer than your body can handle. Your relaxation response, therefore, is less active, which throws your ANS out of balance.
Over time, repeated stressors and negative emotions have a cumulative wear and tear on the body that can lead to significant health problems. This is called "allostatic load." When you are healthy, your nervous system returns to normal functioning after a stressed situation by increasing vagus nerve activity. This helps the system to recover. When you are faced with stress on a daily basis, however, your stress response fails to shut off in a timely manner. Allostatic load leads to reduced activity of your vagus nerve. As a result, your system becomes hyperactive or begins to burn out.
Hyperactive stress responses cause your system to remain in fight-or-flight mode for an extended period of time. Burn-out inhibits both your SNS and PNS from activating. In both cases, your body becomes out of balance, making your system less flexible and less able to effectively adapt to external demands. Over time, allosatic load can cause significant health problems. There is now a large literature on the relationship to stress and disease. According to the American Institute of Stress, "it is hard to think of any disease in which stress cannot play an aggravating role." In fact, the Institute reports that up to 90% of doctors visits are stress related.StressEraser
Measuring Relaxation, HRV, RSA and the Vagus Nerve
The most accurate non-invasive measurement of autonomic regulation is Heart Rate Variability (HRV). HRV refers to beat-to-beat variation in your heart rate; this provides a window into the activity of your parasympathetic and sympathetic nerves.
Your heart rate is never constant. From one beat to the next, your heart rate is always rising and falling. This natural rise and fall is called Respiratory Sinus Arrhythmia (RSA). RSA is usually characterized by an increase in heart rate during inhalation and a decrease in heart rate during exhalation. Although this is called an "arrhythmia," it is not pathological; it is the natural fluxuation of your heart rate due to the constantly changing influence of your PNS on your heart.
RSA gives us a window into the ANS because it is a primary source of variability in heart rate. In general, the greater the "rhythmic" variation in heart rate, the better. For example: An at-rest heart rate that varies between 60 and 80 beats per minute (bpm) is preferable to an at-rest heart rate that varyies between 65 and 70 bpm. The greater your RSA, the more active your vagus nerve, and the more adaptive your nervous system is to the stressful demands of the environment.
Although there are numerous ways to measure HRV - and global measures of HRV provide a reasonable index of this nervous system adaptability - RSA is actually a more useful measurement. Since RSA provide a window into the regulating influence of the vagus nerve on the heart, it is also an excellent measure of resilience to stress (i.e., high-amplitude RSA) or vulnerability to stress (i.e., low-amplitude RSA).
Low-amplitude HRV and low-amplitude RSA have been found to be associated with the following (among others):
- Anxiety Disorders (i.e., PTSD, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, phobias)
- Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
- Cardiac-related morbidity and mortality
- Coronary heart disease
- Depression (mixed findings)
- Chronic pain
- Headache (migraine and tension)
- Sedentary Lifestyle
- Substance Abuse
By contrast, high-amplitude HRV and high-amplitude RSA have been found to be associated with:
- Fetal Health
- Cardiac health
- Practicing meditation & yoga
- Emotional stability
- Increased social support
- Faster reaction time
- Increased attention
- Lower reactivity to stressors
- Overall health
Achieving Relaxation, Breathing and Focusing with the StressEraser
As noted earlier, most of the actions of your ANS are involuntary. However, there is a wealth of literature on the voluntary manipulation of these systems to control the activation of your relaxation response. Perhaps the two most important methods of actively triggering your relaxation response are 1) learning to change your breathing and 2) learning to change your focus. By changing your breathing and your focus, you can increase the vagal influence on your heart—and therefore relax your body.
There is growing literature on the effects of these relaxation exercises on stress-related illnesses and performance. In particular, breathing slowly can activate the vagus nerve to help enhance autonomic control. However, slow breathing without physiological biofeedback—which provides the cues that you are doing it correctly—can actually be counter-productive because you are not breathing in sync with your nervous system.
For example, extending your exhale is generally a good thing. Slow breathing and extended exhales are integrated into most relaxation and meditation practices. But research reveals that extending your exhale TOO long is not good for your nervous system. The research also reveals that everyone has a unique breathing frequency that will maximize vagal activity. Moreover, a common complaint with unassisted breathing techniques is that your mind wanders shortly after beginning the exercise, which limits its physiological benefits.
The StressEraser is a tangible biofeedback device that was specifically designed to help you find the unique breathing pattern that maximizes RSA, maintains your focus, and most efficiently triggers increased vagal influences on your heart.
Greater variability, especially due to larger rhythmic changes associated with breathing, leads to a higher amplitude RSA wave - and therefore more parasympathetic (relaxation) activity. When there is greater parasympathetic tone, it supports health, growth, and restoration.
As you learn to find this breathing pattern, the StressEraser simultaneously guides you to focus your attention, a key aspect of proper physiological relaxation. The goal of this strategy is transform a heart rate pattern characterized by short, jagged RSA waves [Fig. 6.] into one charactereized by large, smooth RSA waves [Fig. 7]. The StressEraser is the only portable HRV/RSA biofeedback device that allows you to follow and manipulate your RSA wave in real time. When used properly, it enhances the state of your nervous system, while inducing feelings of calm and relaxation.
Realtime Biofeedback, How the StressEraser Works
The StressEraser measures your real-time beat-to-beat heart rate via an infrared finger sensor. The finger sensor has a built-in photoplethysmograph to identify the pulsation associated with each heart beat. The StressEraser accurately identifies the time of each pulse and calculates heart rate based on the time that has elapsed between the two most recent pulses. The StressEraser plots the up and down, wavelike movement [Fig. 8] and displays the pulse rate wave on the LCD screen.
By observing the RSA wave derived from your beat-to-beat pulse rate, the StressEraser provides a window into the activity of your vagus nerve [Fig 9].
The StressEraser then breaks down the RSA waves to analyze the frequency of each individual wave [Fig 10].
Once the frequency of the wave is computed, you receive immediate feedback on whether the wave was sufficiently long and smooth to receive credit. If you are breathing in your unique optimal pattern - and have a calm, neutral mind - you score 1 point for a large smooth wave, as marked by three vertical squares. The goal is to achieve this type of wave continuously. If the wave is long enough to indicate sufficient, but not optimal RSA, the user receives 1/2 point as marked by two vertical squares. If the wave is too short, the user receives no points, as marked by one square [Fig. 11]. (Note: Seniors and beginners can set a goal for continuous two-square waves.)
The minimum suggested StressEraser session is 30 points (about 5-7 minutes) with a goal of 100 points per day (approximately 20 minutes).
To achieve continuous three-square waves, you are instructed to inhale until your heart rate peaks. This point is marked by a triangle. The triangle indicates the moment that a natural burst of vagal activity is about to begin, indicating your parasympathetic response. When the triangle appears, begin your exhale and shift your thoughts to a calming focus phrase (such as counting your exhale). Then, extend your exhale until the wave begins to rise again. At the end of your exhale, inhale until the next triangle appears. [See Fig. 12 for a description of the StressEraser interface].
Your optimal wave pattern is shown in Fig. 13. The slow breathing rate required to create this wave varies from person to person, but is usually somewhere between 4.5 and 7 breaths per minute. Your unique pattern is called your "resonant frequency." When you attain your own resonant frequency pattern, there is a perfect phase relationship between your breathing rhythms and your heart rhythms. That is, they are in perfect sync with one another.
Breathing and heart rhythms are the two most important mechanisms involved in the neuroregulation of the heart. As with your breathing, you can consciously alter your natural heart rhythm (known as the "baroreflex") to a certain extent. When they are in perfect sync, studies show that it helps strengthen and balance the autonomic nervous system. Once you learn to find your resonant frequency pattern, you will notice it induces feelings of mind-body relaxation.
One of the most useful features of the StressEraser is that it does not give credit if there is a disruption or "break" in the flow of a wave because of withdrawal of vagus nerve activity. These breaks might be caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Extending the exhale for too long
- Strained or improper breathing
- Excessive emotion
- Being highly distracted
- Fever or illness
- Specific medications blocking vagal regulation
- Or irregular heartbeats
The StressEraser recognizes these breaks and informs you that a disruption occurred. Let's take the example in Fig. 14. The area indicated by the circle in the middle is usually indicative of an exhale that is extended for too long. This causes the wave to rise and fall without obtaining sufficient variability. The smaller circle in the upper right represents a wave that appears to have sufficient length; but because it subtly rises and falls at the peak, the user was not given credit. This break is most likely due to distraction or emotion. Since the StressEraser's feedback is in real-time, you can immediately correct the behavior that caused the wave break. Typically, a wave break is your cue to re-focus on your breathing.
In summary, the StressEraser is a tangible biofeedback device that was specifically designed to help you find the unique breathing pattern that maximizes RSA, maintains your focus, and most efficiently triggers increased vagal influences on your heart. Therefore, the StressEraser promotes health and calmness. It can be used to reduce stress for those who have issues dealing with constant stress, brief stressors (i.e., deadlines, public speaking) or to simply enhance health, performance and overall feelings of calmness. Read the reviews, testimonials, and research and decide for yourself if the StressEraser is right for you.Your Goals
There are two primary goals of each StressEraser session - to relax your body and to calm your mind.1. Your first goal is to relax your body by making tall, wide, smooth waves. Because breathing directly affects your HRV, the most effective way to relax is to dramatically slow your breathing. When your waves are tall, wide, and smooth, you have engaged the natural relaxation response in your body. Repeating for 10-15 minutes at a time has a lasting effect.
2. Your second goal is to calm your mind by reducing negative emotions and thoughts. Even when you are breathing properly, negative emotions will cause your waves to get shorter or to become jagged. You can reduce negative thoughts by focusing on your waves and by counting during your exhale. This exercise will clear your mind.Before You Begin
Practice Slow Breathing. Before you start your first StressEraser session, it is important that you practice breathing slowly. This will give you a feel for the type of breathing you will be doing with the StressEraser. To practice, inhale for 4 seconds and then exhale for 5 seconds. Feel free to follow your watch or to simply count slowly to yourself. Continue breathing at the 4-second/5-second pace for about 2 minutes. Remember, your goal is to learn to breathe slowly - not deeply. As long as you are breathing slowly, depth will come. Your breathing should always feel relaxed, not strained. Creating a wave pattern similar to the pictures below may take a while. So take your time and do the best you can.Your First StressEraser Session1. Press the POWER button on the right side panel (not one of the buttons on the front).
2. When prompted, insert your left index finger into the clip. Wait 5 seconds for the sensor to adjust to your pulse rate.
3. As soon as your wave appears on the screen, press the BREATHE button.
4. Whenever you are ready, inhale slowly and gently. When a new triangle appears above the wave, exhale slowly and gently. During your exhale, slowly count 184.108.40.206.5.
5. When your wave begins to rise, start your next inhale.Note: While triangles cue your exhale, there is no cue for the inhale. If you like, you can use the squares as an approximate cue. Begin your inhale when you see the squares appear under the previous wave. Alternatively, you can count 1 second after your wave has started to rise - whichever works best for you.Score your waves.
Your goal is to consistently score 2 and 3-squares under each wave. You get no credit for 1-square waves. Each 2-square wave is worth 1/2 point. Each 3-square wave is worth 1 point. To get 2 osquares, follow the instructions to create waves that are tall, wide, and smooth. Keep exhaling at the triangle and counting your exhale.Your optimal exhale count.
If 5 is an uncomfortable count for you - or if you're not scoring 2 and 3-square waves - try exhaling for a count of 4 or 6. You can try even faster or slower, depending on your comfort level. Once you have found an exhale count that is comfortable and consistently results in 2 and 3-square waves, you have found your optimal exhale count. Continue with that count until you have scored at least 5points. (Your points accumulate in the top-left corner of the screen.)StressEraser Breathing Tips
1. Don't lean.
For best results, find a comfortable place to sit or recline. Don't lean forward - make sure your sitting position enables you to keep your air passages and abdominal muscles free. Breathe in and out through your nose or mouth, whichever is more comfortable for you.
2. Pursed lips.
If you are having trouble breathing slowly, try pursing your lips. To do this, pucker or "purse" your lips as if you are going to whistle. This will release less air as you exhale and will help slow down your breathing.
3. Always comfortable.
Remember, your breathing should always be gentle, quiet, smooth and comfortable. You should not be straining, taking long inhales, holding your breath, or doing anything that is at all uncomfortable.
4. Slow not deep.
StressEraser breathing is NOT "deep" breathing. Depth will come as long as you are breathing slowly. Breathing deeply too quickly can cause you to feel dizzy or lightheaded. StressEraser breathing is like normal breathing, except it is a little slower. And of course it is synchronized with the activity of your nervous system.
5. Extend your exhale.
Once you are familiar with the StressEraser and are consistently scoring 3 squares, extend your exhale as long as you can until your wave starts to rise again - then begin your inhale. Remember, you benefit from making your exhales longer and longer, as long as your breathing remains comfortable and relaxed. The idea is to extend your exhale for as long as your nervous system can handle.
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