— -- Question: How might stress affect my breathing? What is so-called 'hyperventilation'?
Answer: Hyperventilation is one of the typical symptoms we see in the stress reaction and it literally means breathing excessively, quickly. And the thing to remember with hyperventilation is it's part of a pre-programmed response our body has when we're faced with a stressor.
Traditionally speaking, in the presence of a danger or a threat to us, our body clicks on this defense mechanism that's used to actually get us out of danger: the fight or flight reaction.
So it's natural to breath more quickly when faced with stress because our body is doing what it's been programmed to do for years.