Changes in Breathing Pattern

As a person gets weak, there are changes in the breathing patterns. The most common thing is when the person stops breathing temporarily.  The amount of time the person stops breathing may get longer as they come closer to death. These periods will pass by unnoticed, and are not distressing.

Other times the person's breathing, particularly near death, becomes more rapid, deeper and regular. This is due to acid imbalance in the body and does not cause the person distress.

Oxygen will not help in either of these situations.

Just before death, the person's breathing will slow down, and it may seem like they are gasping. This is quite normal and at this point, the person is not aware or in distress.

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This page was last updated: October 27th, 2004 at 10:08am.