After counting the pulse, take note of how often the patient breathless. You can do this by watching how often the chest expands. Count this for one full minute and write down the results. This is known as respiration.
If the patient is getting short of breath, prop him up in bed, using several pillows. If he is nervous, and if his breathing is irregular, you should notify the doctor at once. Rapid breathing may indicate some real crisis, such as failing heart. On the other hand, a shallow, signing type of breathing may be due to depression, or perhaps to some hidden anxiety.