Before an epileptic seizure one is hyperventilating, which leads to lower levels of carbon dioxide in the body. At the University of Aarhus in Denmark a breathing mask has been developed, Balac Air. It quickly raises the levels of carbon dioxide, which at the same time considerably lowers the blood pH. The researchers claim that breathing with the mask on will stop an epileptic seizure very quickly. BalancAir is not yet available for sale, but you can read the patent application here.
Apart from in epilepsia, low levels of carbon dioxide is common in for example asthma, panic attack, fear, heart problems and breathlessness. Carbon dioxide is produced continuously in our body and leaves us when we exhale.
There are seven ways to increases our levels of carbon dioxide. The best are #1 breathe slowly and #2 physical activity. #3-6 is applied when quick effect is needed while #7 is not specifically suitable then it usually comes with a lot of sugar and other things that affects our body in a negative way.
- Breathe slowly
- Physical activity
- Rebreathe some of the exhaled air (BalancAir, breathe in a bag)
- Uptake through the skin (baths,carbon dioxide enriched baths)
- Drink sodium bicarbonate/baking soda (contains carbon dioxide and can be helpful for example when coughing)
- Hold your breath
- Carbonated beverage