Is your breathing embarrassing you?

Hyperventilation sets off lots of different symptoms that can affect any part of the body. The ones that most people complain about as embarrassing are:

Frequent Urination: The need to urinate more frequently than is considered usual by friends and family can be annoying and embarrassing. "I know where every public toilet is in my district' is a common complaint of people with hyperventilation problems.

Excessive sweating: Most of us don't mind sweating a little bit, but when it takes over your life, it can be embarrassing. "It wasn't just my underarms and my feet, but my head would sweat a lot. It was like watching someone who had a gun to his head in a movie. To add insult to injury, the more I would sweat, the more tongue-tied I became."

Belching and Flatulence: As soon as some people get stressed, their stomach ties itself up in knots, there is a lot of bloating and the air has to come out one end or the other. This is often accompanied by nervous diarrhea, which may show itself every time a situation becomes tense.

Forgetfulness: "I made a mistake when I typed in the incorrect pin code for my cash card; then I could not for the life of me remember what it was. As I became more flustered I typed in the wrong number two more times before the card was refused. The sales assistant was very nice about it and because I could still sign the correct way, I bought the goods with my credit card, but I had intended using my savings account."

Fear of fainting: When hyperventilation is extreme, you can pass out. Most people never do, but they worry that they will and will be embarrassed when they come to again.

Snoring: "I could never go away with friends on a cruise; or even on land if we had to share a room, because I snored too much." Snoring may seem like a joke, but it isn't if you have to share a room with a heavy snorer, or if you are embarrassed about waking people up.

Chest Pain: This symptom is probably not really embarrassing, but instead, just plain scary. It is right up there with "I regularly get pins and needles all down my arm or across my back and the first time it happened, I thought I was having a stroke!" Many people rush to hospital with chest pain or numbness only to be told to breathe into a paper bag to quickly raise their carbon dioxide levels. At this point it might become embarrassing, but you are certainly not alone, so don't worry about it.