With the COVID-19 pandemic still gripping the world, many people are worried about their health. Many folks have started to wonder if they’re eating healthy, if they’re taking care of their immune system, and if their lungs are strong enough. Or perhaps you are wondering if there is something you can do to be strengthening your lungs.
After all, this global pandemic is a type of respiratory disease. Studies have shown that people with underlying health conditions are at a higher risk of suffering from the virus.
According to CNN, respiratory health is a significant factor in how an individual will cope with the infection. When the lungs become inflamed to kill the virus, it also prevents the lungs from properly oxygenating air. This, in turn, causes the hallmark condition of the disease: struggling for air.
As such, folks with stronger lungs will likely fare better with the disease than those with impaired respiratory systems. While strengthening your lungs your lung health won’t stop you from getting the illness, it will certainly help you recover faster if you happen to become infected. If you’re trying to improve your respiratory health, rely on these tips to get healthier.
Quit smoking as soon as possible
The CDC notes that a large portion of the people admitted to the ICU are current smokers or have a history of smoking. This is because smoking kills otherwise healthy lung tissue and narrows the passageways in which air flows. It’s because of these two primary factors that lung cancer and other respiratory illnesses are more common in smokers.
“Both cigarette smoking and vaping are linked to lung inflammation and lowered immune function in the lung’s airways,” explains Albert Rizzo, the chief medical officer of the American Lung Association. “These can increase the likelihood of complications if exposed to COVID-19.”
While former smokers are still at a higher risk of complications from COVID-19, kicking the habit is still the best way to begin strengthening your lungs.
Studies show that carbon monoxide levels in the bloodstream return to normal just 12 hours after quitting smoking. According to the American Lung Association, lung function starts to improve in just two weeks after you quit.
It can be a hard habit to kick, but it will certainly help your health if you do.
Perform a home inspection
Did you know that one in 15 U.S. homes have radon levels above the EPA action level? Radon, carbon monoxide and gas leaks in the home can all have deleterious effects on your health, especially your lungs.
Luckily, radon can be mitigated by installing a sump pump in your basement. Radon spreads throughout a home thanks to irradiated rock breaking down and causing radon to seep through your foundation and up through the home. Calling a radon mitigation company is the best way to keep your family — and your lungs — healthy.
Carbon monoxide is another threat. Like radon, it’s odorless and impossible to see. Checking your home’s carbon monoxide detector regularly is the best way to stop this gas from affecting your health.
Gas leaks are easier to deal with since you can smell gas easily. However, preventing this issue from occurring from the start is key. Update your appliances as needed and inspect your gas tanks often. If you breathe in any of these gases, your health could be adversely affected, including your lung health.
Avoid allergens at all costs
Allergens are particularly common in the summer thanks to countless blooming trees and plants releasing pollen. If you have allergies, avoiding allergen hotspots is essential especially if you’re concerned with strengthening your lungs.
Allergies can trigger asthma attacks in some people and frequently result in excessive mucus production that can limit our ability to breathe properly. If you want to spend time outdoors, be sure to check the pollen count in your area to avoid allergy attacks.
Unfortunately, you’re not safe indoors either. The pandemic has caused many people to spend more time indoors but dust, pet dander, and open windows can cause allergy symptoms inside your home, too. Cleaning regularly and utilizing an air filter can help improve the air quality in your home, making it easier to breathe.
If you do have to go outdoors, be sure to wear a mask to prevent pollen — and the novel coronavirus — from impacting your health. You should also wear a mask when you clean.
The United States and Canada are among the world’s top producers of chemicals, including chemical cleaning products. When you’re cleaning, wear a mask to protect yourself from breathing in those potentially harmful chemicals.
Engage in Cardio
One of the best ways to begin strengthening your lungs is by exercising regularly. Especially when it comes to performing aerobic exercise. Jogging, walking, and swimming are all great ways to improve your bodily health along with your respiratory health. You’ll notice that your lungs will work more efficiently when engaging in arduous exercise through repeated use. Never doubt the importance of a regular exercise routine.
There are an estimated 472,000 primary care physicians in the United States alone. If you’re looking for more tips and tricks to start strengthening your lungs during this difficult time, don’t hesitate to reach out to an experienced medical professional.