What is the Respiratory System?
Your respiratory system is a network of organs and tissues that helps you breathe. It includes your airways, lungs and blood vessels. The muscles that power your lungs are also part of the respiratory system. These parts work together to move oxygen throughout the body. Your body absorbs oxygen from the air so that your organs can work and clean waste gases like carbon dioxide from your blood.
Some Common Respiratory System Issues:
It is common for people to experience respiratory difficulties with allergies, diseases or infections. People with allergies develop breathing issues when inhaling proteins such as dust, mold, and pollen; these proteins can cause inflammation in the airways. People with asthma, a chronic long-term disorder, experience inflammation in the airway which makes it difficult to breathe. Those with an infection can develop pneumonia (inflammation of the lungs) or bronchitis (inflammation of the bronchial tubes.) One of the most common respiratory infections include the flu (influenza), or a cold. When people suffer from a respiratory disease, they can develop lung cancer or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Respiratory illnesses can harm the respiratory system’s ability to deliver oxygen throughout the entire body and fail to filter out waste gases. As the world is currently suffering from the global pandemic COVID-19, we must all focus on our lung health and learn how to best treat our respiratory system.
Here are some ways to help keep your respiratory system healthy:
- Avoid: pollutants, secondhand smoke, chemicals, fumes and dust.
- Don’t smoke!
- Eat healthy, fruits, vegetables and lots of water.
- Exercise to keep your lungs healthy.
- To prevent infections, wash your hands often.
- Get a flu vaccine each year.
- Give your body plenty of sleep.
Written by Teri Chavez, Massage Therapist