Inhaling and exhaling. Simple, right? It’s something that we do every day, every waking minute. It relaxes us, wakes us up and, most importantly, keeps us alive.
The lungs are part of the respiratory system, made up of organs and tissues that work together to help you breathe, states the American Lung Association. Its main job? To move fresh air and oxygen into the body while removing waste gases.
Let’s get technical for a minute. To survive, every cell in the body needs oxygen. The air around us contains oxygen, among other gases. As we breathe, we intake the air and the oxygen is moved to the bloodstream and transported throughout the body. The blood carries the oxygen that touches each cell of the body. As it interacts with the cells, oxygen is exchanged for the gas waste carbon dioxide. The blood then carries the waste gas back to the lungs where it is removed from the blood stream and exhaled.
This gas exchange happens automatically and is vital process for the body. Cool, huh?
But that’s not all! The respiratory system has other roles important to breathing which include:
How the Parts of the Respiratory System Work
There are many parts to the respiratory system. The American Lung Association lists them out as follows.
There are also a variety of blood vessels that help the lungs function correctly.
Lastly, you have muscles and bones that help your respiratory system as well.
It’s known that as you age, the lungs lose capacity. This is why it’s important to prioritize lung health and not take it for granted. Below are some tips as to how you can keep your lungs healthy and in shape over time.
Have any questions about your lungs or getting a checkup? Let us know in the comments below.
SIGN IN to share your comments or REGISTER today to become a Connect member.
A Division of Health Care Service Corporation, a Mutual Legal Reserve Company, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. © Copyright 2019 Health Care Service Corporation. All Rights Reserved.
Telligent is an operating division of Verint Americas, Inc., an independent company that provides and hosts an online community platform for blogging and access to social media for Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois.
File is in portable document format (PDF). To view this file, you may need to install a PDF reader program. Most PDF readers are a free download. One option is Adobe® Reader® which has a built-in screen reader. Other Adobe accessibility tools and information can be downloaded at http://access.adobe.com.