Relaxation Techniques for Asthma

Feelings of stress may make some of your asthma symptoms worse. When you learn how to manage your stress, you may see some improvement in these symptoms. But for the best symptom control, be sure to take your medicine as directed and follow your asthma treatment plan. Two stress management techniques you may try are:

  • meditation
  • yoga


Meditation is a self-directed practice for relaxing the body and calming the mind. Some studies have found that regular meditation can increase longevity and quality of life, as well as relieve anxiety and stress.


Yoga incorporates meditation, breathing techniques, and a series of positions and movements to help improve overall health. There are several different styles of yoga, some of which provide specific directions for diet, exercise, and daily living. Some research suggests that yoga can improve breathing. Further studies may prove that these controlled breathing techniques may be beneficial in asthma.

Written by Karen Serrano, MD

Emergency Medicine resident at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Reviewed by Lisa V. Suffian, MD

Instructor of Clinical Pediatrics in the Division of Allergy and Pulmonary Medicine at Saint Louis Children's Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine

Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital, Saint Louis University

Board certified in Allergy and Immunology

Last updated June 2008