Lung health is vital for a person's overall health. The lungs are self-cleaning organs that will begin to heal themselves once their exposure to pollutants stops, for example, when someone quits smoking. After the lungs have had exposure to pollution, such as cigarette smoke, a person's chest may feel full, congested, or inflamed. Mucus gathers in the lungs to catch microbes and pathogens, which contributes to this feeling of heaviness. People may be able to use specific techniques to help clear the lungs of mucus and irritants to relieve chest congestion and other uncomfortable symptoms. Some of these methods may also open up the airways, improve lung capacity, and reduce inflammation, which can help reduce the effects of pollution and smoke in the lungs.
How Lungs Work
Your lungs are part of the respiratory system, a group of organs and tissues that work together to help you breathe. The respiratory system's main job is to move fresh air into your body while removing waste gases.
Why are lungs important?
- Every cell in your body needs oxygen in order to live. The air we breathe contains oxygen and other gases. Once in the lungs, oxygen is moved into the bloodstream and carried through your body. At each cell in your body, oxygen is exchanged for a waste gas called carbon dioxide. Your bloodstream then carries this waste gas back to the lungs where it is removed from the bloodstream and then exhaled. Your lungs and respiratory system automatically perform this vital process, called gas exchange.
- In addition to gas exchange, your respiratory system performs other roles important to breathing. These include:
- Bringing air to the proper body temperature and moisturizing it to the right humidity level.
- Protecting your body from harmful substances. This is done by coughing, sneezing, filtering or swallowing them.
- Supporting your sense of smell.
- The Parts of the Respiratory System and How They Work
- SINUSES are hollow spaces in the bones of your head above and below your eyes that are connected to your nose by small openings. Sinuses help regulate the temperature and humidity of inhaled air.
- The NOSE is the preferred entrance for outside air into the respiratory system. The hairs lining the nose's wall are part of the air-cleaning system.
- Air also enters through the MOUTH, especially for those who have a mouth-breathing habit, whose nasal passages may be temporarily blocked by a cold, or during heavy exercise.
- The THROAT collects incoming air from your nose and mouth then passes it down to the windpipe (trachea).
- The WINDPIPE (trachea) is the passage leading from your throat to your lungs.
- The windpipe divides into the two main BRONCHIAL TUBES, one for each lung, which divides again into each lobe of your lungs. These, in turn, split further into bronchioles.
Lungs and Blood Vessels
- Your right lung is divided into three LOBES, or sections. Each lobe is like a balloon filled with sponge-like tissue. Air moves in and out through one opening—a branch of the bronchial tube.
- Your left lung is divided into two LOBES.
- The PLEURA are the two membranes, actually, one continuous one folded on itself, that surround each lobe of the lungs and separate your lungs from your chest wall.
- Your bronchial tubes are lined with CILIA (like very small hairs) that move like waves. This motion carries MUCUS (sticky phlegm or liquid) upward and out into your throat, where it is either coughed up or swallowed. Mucus catches and holds much of the dust, germs, and other unwanted matter that has invaded your lungs. You get rid of this matter when you cough, sneeze, clear your throat or swallow.
- The smallest branches of the bronchial tubes are called BRONCHIOLES, at the end of which are the air sacs or alveoli.
- ALVEOLI are the very small air sacs where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place.
- CAPILLARIES are blood vessels in the walls of the alveoli. Blood passes through the capillaries, entering through your PULMONARY ARTERY and leaving via your PULMONARY VEIN. While in the capillaries, blood gives off carbon dioxide through the capillary wall into the alveoli and takes up oxygen from air in the alveoli.
Muscles and Bones
Your DIAPHRAGM is the strong wall of muscle that separates your chest cavity from the abdominal cavity. By moving downward, it creates suction in the chest, drawing in air and expanding the lungs.
RIBS are bones that support and protect your chest cavity. They move slightly to help your lungs expand and contract.
A nagging cough or slight wheeze may barely register in the course of our busy days, but it's critically important to pay attention to even mild symptoms. Sometimes people think having trouble breathing is just something that comes with getting older. It is important to pay attention to these symptoms as they could be the first signs of lung disease, including COPD, asthma and lung cancer. Knowing the early warning signs of lung disease can help you receive treatment before the disease becomes serious or even life threatening. If you experience any of the following warning signs, make an appointment with your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Early detection could save your life.
- Chronic cough: A cough that you have had for a month or longer is considered chronic. This is an important early symptom that tells you something is wrong with your respiratory system.
- Shortness of breath: It's not normal to experience shortness of breath that doesn't go away after exercising, or that you have after little or no exertion. Labored or difficult breathing—the feeling that it is hard to breathe in out—is also a warning sign.
- Chronic mucus production: Mucus, also called sputum or phlegm, is produced by the airways as a defense against infections or irritants. If your mucus production has lasted a month or longer, this could indicate lung disease.
- Wheezing: Noisy breathing or wheezing is a sign that something unusual is blocking your lungs' airways or making them too narrow.
- Coughing up blood: If you are coughing up blood, it may be coming from your lungs or upper respiratory tract. Wherever it's coming from, it signals a health problem.
- Chronic chest pain: Unexplained chest pain that lasts for a month or more—especially if it gets worse when you breathe in or cough—also is a warning sign.
- What Are the Symptoms of Lung Cancer?
- Many people with lung cancer don't have symptoms until the disease is in its later stages. Because there are very few nerve endings in the lungs, a tumor could grow without causing pain or discomfort. When symptoms are present, they are different in each person, but may include:
- A cough that doesn't go away and gets worse over time
- Constant chest pain
- Shortness of breath or wheezing
- Frequent lung infections such as bronchitis or pneumonia
- Coughing up blood
- Some symptoms of lung cancer may not seem related to the lungs or breathing. These symptoms can still be a sign of lung cancer because lung cancer usually does not cause symptoms in its earlier stages. This means some symptoms do not appear until the cancer has spread to other parts of the body. Some of these symptoms may include:
- Weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Bone pain or fractures
- Blood clots
- See your doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms. If you think you are at risk for lung cancer, talk to your doctor about being screened.
- Some people, unfortunately, go misdiagnosed for a long time because their symptoms are similar to other diagnoses such as pneumonia, allergies or a cold. If you feel that something is wrong, be persistent with your doctor. You know your body best and being persistent could save your life.
What is the remedy for the Lungs problem?
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Lungs Care Benefits:
- Supports normal function of lungs
- Reduces excess secretions of kapha
- Clears Sinus congestion
- Prevents Dryness in Lungs
- Respiratory tonic
- It is used by people along with TIG10 for people who are affected by Lung cancer