Breathing is a symbol of life
In chilly November, our body is extremely susceptible to respiratory diseases. Did you know that by breathing properly, you can prevent depression and anxiety? So why and how should you take good care of your lungs, especially now that the world has been paralyzed by Covid-19, which can seriously damage them?
Lungs - an organ you can't live without
Well, not literally - lungs are a paired organ and it is possible to live without one lung. However, if you were as unfortunate as to lose both, you would die within a minute. The total area of lung tissue is almost forty times the outer surface of our body. Both lungs are located in the thoracic cavity and are divided into lobes - the right one has three and the left two. This organ ensures the exchange of gases between air and blood. Lungs are wrapped in a thin membrane and stored in the pleural cavity. They consist of millions of alveoli surrounded by blood capillaries. In addition to oxygenating the blood, our lungs are also responsible for maintaining surface tension and destroying foreign particles.
How do the lungs work?
Understanding lung function is a great start to taking better care of them. Every part of the human body needs oxygen from the air. If we didn't breathe, we would die. Most of the time we don't even realize that our lungs are working. That is why we often overlook their vital importance for human life. Our breath and our lungs are essential for a functioning human body. In the Czech Republic, 21% of men and 15% of women smoke daily. On average, they smoke 11 classic cigarettes in a single day. What's worse, they're not endangering only their own health, but also damaging the health and shortening the lives of their loved ones, passive smokers. The Czech Republic takes the unflattering 7th place in the world cigarette consumption statistics. Inflammation often develops in the airways of smokers and more mucus begins to form in the large airways, which leads to chronic respiratory diseases. The best way to quit smoking is to combine counseling and treatment. According to research, people who try to quit smoking alone succeed in only 3-5% of cases. Once counseling is involved in the process, the success rate increases to 25 to 30 percent.
Did you know that... we breathe about 22,000 times every day?
What diseases are lungs susceptible to?
We probably don't need to introduce COVID-19 at length, as the pandemic has changed the whole world this year. Currently, more than 50 million people have tested positive for coronavirus worldwide, of which over 400,000 are from the Czech Republic. Mortality of coronavirus patients ranges between 1-3% worldwide, largely depending on their age. The long-term consequences of this disease have not yet been fully studied, but a significant number of patients who suffer from the disease experience irreversible damage to the lungs. As a prevention against the disease, it is recommended to wear protective equipment (face masks, respirators, etc.), limit personal contact and wash one's hands thoroughly.
However, the lungs are also t risk from other viruses and bacteria that cause respiratory infections, some of which can develop into chronic forms.
The most common chronic lung disease in the Czech Republic is asthma. Up to 1 million people in our country suffer from this chronic pneumonia. Each year, up to 100 people in our country die of acute severe asthma. Early and most importantly long-term treatment is is crucial for this disease. A state of full control is achievable with asthma, especially in its less severe forms. Many asthmatics, for example, play top sports.
A less commonly known disease is chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), also called emphysema. With this disease, it is impossible to properly exhale air, which means there is no oxygenation of blood in certain parts of the lungs. Up to 300,000 Czechs suffer from this very unpleasant disease. Three and a half thousand of them die each year with this diagnosis.
Lung cancer, which affects up to 7,000 Czech citizens a year, most often smokers, is gaining more media attention. In most cases, treatment is not successful because the disease has been diagnosed at an advanced stage. Only 16 percent of people with lung cancer survive for more than 5 years.
Did you know that... up to seventy percent of waste is excreted by the lungs simply by breathing?
How to take care of your lungs?
1. Stop smoking.
2. Wear suitable protective equipment in an environment where you are exposed to dust, gases, vapors or chemicals.
3. Protect yourself from the flu and pneumonia. If you are over 65 years of age, vaccination is recommended.
4. Exercise regularly and eat healthily.
5. If you experience shortness of breath or a persistent cough, see your doctor.
6. If you already have a lung disease, pay attention to the warnings regarding the level of air pollution.
Did you know that the left lung is smaller than the right one to accomodate your heart?
We believe that everyone can take a nice deep breath
...and that's why it pays off to help! Our mission is to increase awareness of lung diseases and strive for their early diagnosis.
The Our Lungs Endowment Fund, founded by Y&T Luxury Property - a real estate agency consisting only of women, has decided to help the Czech healthcare system. It supports the prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of lung diseases, including lung cancer, and the consequences of COVID-19. The "Our Lungs" endowment fund was established during the first wave of the pandemic of this disease. It supports the treatment of respiratory diseases in adults and children.
"As a donor, we have supported various charity projects in the past. This time we would like to give it not only a different legal form, but also a whole new dimension - to help Czech experts and hospitals in the long term,"
says Elena Jakubovič, the founder of the Y&T Luxury Property, about the endowment fund.
We grant a second breath to the respiratory department of the General University Hospital at Charles Square. The aim of the donor initiative - Our Lungs - Support of the General University Hospital at Charles Square is to purchase the wireless ultrasonographic probe SONON 300C. Early ultrasound of the lungs can save the lives of patients by detect an infection at an early stage.