Did you know about 35 million Americans are suffering from one kind of lung disease or the other? Did you know that lung infections are believed to be one of the most important causes for infant mortality in America? Probably you also did not know that diseases related to lung claim one in seven lives every year.
Well, it is an alarming statistics, isn’t it? But what does a lung disease mean? Precisely, Lung disease refers to any kind of disorder in which the functions of respiratory system get affected and impaired. This impairment manifest in several ways, such as, troubled breathing, nagging cough, short of breath, pain or uneasiness in the chest, inability of taking up physical labor and likes.
Categories of lung disease
The medical science divides all kinds of lung diseases into two broad categories: Obstructive lung diseases and Restrictive lung diseases. In obstructive lung diseases, the airways get narrowed or blocked and the result is a decrease in exhaled air flow. The disorders like Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), emphysema, asthma, and bronchiectasis are cause by such obstructions of lungs.
Restrictive Lung Diseases provoke losing of lung tissue or decrease in the lung’s ability to expand. It may also decrease the transfer of oxygen or carbon dioxide into the bloodstream. The killer disease of lung cancer is a kind of restrictive lung disease. Pulmonary fibrosis and pneumonia are also caused by the same lung disorder.
Probably lung cancer is the most common form of ling diseases that the people are more familiar with. Another commonly found diseases among Americans—asthma—is also a kind of lung disorder. Tuberculosis is also the result of bad lungs. Then you might have heard of such diseases like Cystic Fibrosis, Emphysema or Mesothelioma…they all are the manifestation of some kind of lung disorders.
Are you a heavy smoker? Well, you run the maximum risk of developing lung disease. What did you tell, you don’t smoke? Well this is not adequate; you have to stay clear of the smokers, for it is the passive smokers who are at higher risk than the smokers themselves to develop some kind of lung disease, even cancer. Make it a point to request a smoker to enjoy his cigarette in a secluded place so that the others are not forced to inhale second hand smoke.
Then if you work in mines or somehow exposed to radon gas, you run the risk of developing a bad lungs. In the USA, radon is sometimes found in the households also and so it is important for everybody to invest in a kit for measuring the concentration of radon at your home and take the steps accordingly.
If you are working in the sectors which use asbestos, you are required by the Federal Law to use protective gears including a face mask. The same is necessary if you are constantly exposed to dust or harmful chemical fumes, for these also considerably damage your lungs in the long run.
Last of all, the medical authorities always recommend a healthy diet for preventing lung cancer. A diet consisting lots of anti- oxidant rich fresh fruits and vegetables, considerably reduces the risks of cancer. Also go for regular Spirometry testing to make sure that your precious lungs are in perfect shape.