New technique helps asthma sufferers

BREATH OF LIFE CAMPAIGN LOGO AND NATIONAL ASTHMA CAMPAIGN LOGO.>AN alternative method of treating asthma may soon be regularly available in Suffolk.


AN alternative method of treating asthma may soon be regularly available in Suffolk.

Dean Rees-Evans, a practitioner of Buteyko, a treatment which does not involve drugs, has started offering seminars for sufferers to learn the technique in the Ipswich area.

The Colchester-based tutor is hoping to teach as many asthmatics as possible about how simple breathing exercises can relieve asthma.

Dean, 40, gave a free talk on the Buteyko method at the Ipswich Buddhist Centre, The Thoroughfare, Ipswich, on August 25. There he told those interested in easing their asthma problems how medical trials had shown Buteyko could reduce the use of reliever inhalers by 96 per cent and preventer medication by 49 per cent within a few weeks of starting the course.

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The method, which was introduced to the UK in 1994, but as yet has not been recognised by GPs, is a series of breathing exercises, which must be performed at least three times a day to be effective.

It does not interfere with a normal lifestyle and is based on the theory that if a patient breathes too rapidly it indicates ill health. Buteyko works by retraining this involuntary breathing mechanism by using a number of tailored breathing manoeuvres.

Dean first learnt about the technique himself when he went to a public seminar like the one he staged at the weekend.

He had been plagued by the breathing problem and since he was 14, when his asthma began to worsen, and he had tried many alternative therapies including acupuncture and various diets. They helped to fractionally ease the symptoms but never had the same dramatic effect as the Buteyko treatment. So when Dean's osteopath recommended the seminar he found the information given life-changing.

"I was star struck by the whole idea, I thought if this really works this will be my future. Going to a public seminar changed my life," he said.

Three years after starting the course Dean no longer has to use his inhalers and lives a full and active life. He soon trained at the Buteyko Institute of Breathing and Health in Newcastle and became a practitioner so that he could give seminars in the area.

"They are breathing exercises and habits. We don't tell people to throw their medication away but through exercise most asthmatics can feel dramatically better."

For more information contact Dean on 01206 369749.


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