Healthy Lung Month

October is National healthy lung month, a month that for many people causes multiple problems pertaining to their lungs. Problems that stem from the pollens and mold that are so prevalent this time of the year. There are several pollens that occur in the fall such as ragweed, nettle, mugwort, fat hen and sorrel, which many people are allergic to.

These pollens may produce unpleasant symptoms such as sneezing, sniffling, nasal congestion, runny nose, sleep disruption, red and/or puffy/itchy and/or dry or watery eyes, itchy throat, cough, sore throat and even hives. Persons that are severely allergic to pollens may experience chronic sinus problems (sinusitis) and even asthma attacks.

Mold is another problematic allergen in the fall due to colder temperatures and wetter conditions. To help lower your risk of suffering mold allergies you can use a room de-humidifier inside the house. If you must go outside or perform yard work you can wear a face mask and if you see visible mold clean it with a diluted bleach solution to kill the mold. Any allergies whether mold or pollen can be relieved by using an antihistamine such as BenadrylTM.

Now, some problems people have with their lungs aren’t caused by allergies, they are caused by the person themselves by partaking of a bad habit known as smoking. Smoking leads to many problems with the lungs and air passageways as well as other parts of the body.

Severe medical issues such as bronchitis, emphysema, cardiopulmonary disease, high blood pressure (which can lead to heart attack and stroke), vasoconstriction (constricted/narrowed blood vessels) which also may lead to heart attack and stroke, DVT (deep vein thrombosis (blood clot )), pulmonary embolism, as well as being carcinogenic which can cause cancer in the lungs, mouth and throat.

Sure, God gave you two lungs and you can live with one, but why would you do that to yourself? Keeping fit and healthy promotes a longer, happier life and maintaining lung health is primary to maintaining your overall health. You body needs oxygen to function and oxygen is obtained through gas exchange that takes place in the lungs.

Inhale air, your body uses the oxygen and you exhale carbon dioxide (which is what plants need and they in turn produce oxygen), for a symbiotic relationship of the flora and fauna that exists on our planet. What a wonderful design (what? Oh, sure, all this complex chemistry just happened to evolve) by our creator.

But to stay a happy healthy functioning part of this symbiotic relationship you need to keep your lungs healthy. Exercise as simple as a brisk walk to get your heart pumping and lungs working is all it takes.

If you are in a more advanced state of physical conditioning then riding bicycles or jogging/running will really get the ol’ blood pump going and get the lungs inhaling and exhaling and thereby help to sustain lung capacity or even increase your lung capacity.

And that”s what it’s really about, lung capacity. The greater the lung capacity the easier it is to provide your body and its organs with the vital oxygen it needs to live a happier, healthier life.


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