Respiratory Health

We humans like all living creatures need to respire to live. It makes sense to keep our ventilatory system in good health, the topic dealt with here in this section of the website for your information.

We strive to remain as physically healthy as we can and that includes looking after our lungs and bronchial airways. However, allergies and illnesses can impact that health leading to breathing difficulties that can seriously degrade a person's state of healthfulness.

Breathing Related Allergies

One of the most common forms of allergy that affects breathing is hay fever, which is brought on during the season when (mainly) grass pollen is present in large quantities in the air. Different people are affected by different types of pollen, although those of common grasses are generally the biggest culprit.

In order to bring some relief from the unpleasant symptoms of this allergy, thousands of people flock to their doctors or pharmacists to obtain medications and in more serious cases, steroid-based inhalers, nebulizers and ventilators. So far there is no certain cure for this form of allergy, although some natural non-drug based remedies do exist.

These treatments will be covered in separate articles.

Asthma

A worryingly common breathing condition that seems to be affecting ever more people annually is asthma. This is a medical condition that affects the airways, often striking when the sufferer is placed under a lot of mental or physical stress or exposed to certain allergens or other airborne pollutants.

The symptoms of asthma are often described as being a general feeling of breathlessness along with tightness in the chest often accompanied by coughing and wheezing fits. The degree of the individual and combined symptoms varies from person to person and will depend on the severity of the attack.

Attacks of asthma occur when the airways become acutely narrowed through inflammation of the sensitive lining of the bronchial airways. This is often compounded by increased mucous secretion leading to further blockages of phlegm making the passage of air extremely difficult.

Symptoms are most commonly relieved by using a corticosteroid inhaler under prescription and direction from a doctor. Various alternative treatments are available which are useful for reducing the frequency and severity of attacks, although they should not be considered as replacements for prescribed medications.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

This is actually the collective name for a group of lung diseases that affect breathing in a variety of ways and in levels of severity. These include emphysema, bronchitis and also chronic obstructive airways disease.

As with asthma, sufferers of COPD experience breathing difficulties due in part to the narrowing of the airways, otherwise known as airflow obstruction and in some cases can be extremely serious, even life threatening. One of the major causes of this disease is smoking, which damages the delicate lining of the airways in the lungs causing scarring and tissue damage over time.

COPD Symptoms

One of the most prominent symptoms is coughing and wheezing, which is often dismissed by many undiagnosed sufferers as merely a "smoker's cough." The longer a person has regularly smoked for, the higher their chances of contracting this illness.

While there is no way to reverse the lung damage already inflicted by smoking, the progress of the disease itself can be slowed by observing some common sense health points, such as quitting smoking in the first instance and working to improve respiration through exercise and breathing techniques.

If you suspect you are suffering from any respiratory disease and have not been diagnosed, it is important that you consult your doctor as soon as possible.

Related Article Titles

Below you will find a list of articles covering many aspects of the health of the ventilatory system and information associated with this particular category:

Resources

Below are some useful resources that expand on the information provided on this page: