One of the most important vital signs of our body – Respiratory rate is the most ignored. Measure respiratory rate indicates several medical conditions like asthma, pneumonia, cardiac arrests, and even cancer. It also affects emotional and mental states, physical conditions, and even exercise or sports performances. Respiratory rate is more sensitive in diagnosing these conditions compared to other vital signs of the body. However, it is not routinely measured when there is abundant technology, tools, and sensors available to monitor it, especially with the critical implications it has on the betterment of healthcare, work settings, sports, and exercise.
Respiratory rate is the collective sum of the number of breaths you take in a minute. For every bodily function, it should be measured too as it falls under the cluster of vital signs. Let us help you to understand respiratory rate better and how to measure it. Breathing rate can vary with age, weight, tolerance to exercise, and general health. For the average adult, a normal breathing rate consists of 12 to 18 breaths per minute. However, several factors can impair respiratory function, creating a pattern of quick, shallow breathing.
You can measure your breathing rate by counting the number of breaths you take over the course of one minute while you’re at rest. Measuring our respiratory rate has different approaches based on our environmental settings.
Here is a list of 5 ways how you can measure your respiratory rate from this video by The Health Education of England.