The respiratory system works like a ventilation system; bringing oxygen and other gases into the body while removing carbon dioxide, dust moisture, bacteria and viruses. Once oxygen enters the body it’s collected by red blood cells. The red blood cells in turn transport oxygen through the arteries as a means to distribute it to the rest of the cells in the body.
In order to avoid unwanted substances like dust, moisture, bacteria, and viruses from entering the body, certain parts and organs in the respiratory system perform a series of protective/defensive work. The nose acts as a passage, allowing outside air to enter. Once air comes in through the mouth or nose, sinuses regulate the air temperature and humidity. From there the air is filtered by the trachea as it moves up to tubes called bronchi. The bronchi contain hair-like cells known as cilia. Cilia act as a barrier to keep germs, dust, and other particles out. These cells also create mucus as a prison for unwanted substances, allowing us to trap foreign material and expel it from the body through coughing, blowing our nose, etc.
Filtered air continues to travel through the respiratory system into the lungs where specialized alveolus cells exchange carbon dioxide for the new oxygen. The lungs themselves contain a large variety of cells, creating a biological landscape with several different types of tissue. Lung damage can originate in a number of these different types of tissue. Lungs weigh about 3 pounds and have the capacity to inhale 2400 gallons of air a day. In addition to temporarily storing air, the lungs also work to keep our bloodstream safe.
The last part of the respiratory system is the diaphragm. This muscle is located under the lungs, right between the chest cavity and abdominal area. Much of the muscular movement is coordinated by brain neurons and extended nerves to the diaphragm.
Throughout the respiratory system, the body houses a gigantic army of immune cells which stand ready to destroy any invaders. When the respiratory system is compromised illness can be classified as infection, obstruction, restriction, or vascular. Chronic disorders include emphysema, asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, fibrosis, alveolar damage, and embolism. These illnesses can be triggered or initiated by air pollution, infections, tobacco, cleaning solvents, chemicals, factory fumes, and medications.
At the root of all respiratory problems is chronic stress due to the way that it compromises the immune system. When we’re under chronic stress high levels of cortisol are produced. This weakens the thymus gland, a highly important gland which is responsible for creating immune cells and coordinating immune activity. This leaves the respiratory system vulnerable to infections. Often time antibiotics are used to get rid of infections. The prescription of an antibiotic however is an incomplete treatment method. Sometimes bacteria have time to encapsulate, leading to antibiotic resistance. When encapsulated, bacteria settle in the tissues awaiting for the right conditions to arise when they can begin infecting and taking over. This waiting period can take weeks or months later. Encapsulated bacteria however are much more resilient than the original strain. This typically leads to recurrent infection, creating tissue damage and unchecked illness. As a result inflammation takes place. This leads to respiratory issues such as asthma, where our ability to dispel foreign matter though coughing becomes impaired. This leads to more infections. In addition to chronic stress, exposure to solvents and chemicals also cause damage to respiratory tissues, leading to infections and fibrosis.
Sinusitis occurs when the sinuses get inflamed. This makes it difficult to breathe for a week or more. If inflammation takes place, the nasal passages are used as pathways for viruses and allergens, leading to obstruction that can even trigger additional respiratory issues. Lung inflammation can also cause bronchitis. Continuous coughing and fatigue are usually signs of bronchitis. Under these conditions the bronchi membranes start swelling, narrowing the breathing pathways. Wheezing and chest pain is also possible. This situation is perfect for bacteria to develop and grow. Additional mucus can also clog the airways. Smoke, fumes and other toxins are the main cause of tissue cell damage in the respiratory system. When viruses and bacteria pass through these damaged areas, they take the opportunity to infect unhealthy or weak cells. It’s important to avoid breathing smoke, fumes and other toxins. Additionally, continued use of pharmaceutical drugs disrupts the respiratory system.
Now a quick word about coughing. Coughing is how the body tries to clear our respiratory passages to get the air we need. Coughing is how dust, germs and mucus are removed from the lungs. After a cold, if the immune system is compromised from the bacteria in your lungs, a new infection will start. If this infection isn’t contained, this can result in pneumonia. Remember that dealing with these kinds of issues with synthetic antibiotics will only provide a temporary solution. And, as we already mentioned, pathogens that form a resistance to antibiotics and encapsulate themselves within our tissues, have the potential to cause a significant amount of damage and cripple our health.
One of the reasons why antibiotics are so ineffective is due to bacterial intelligence. Bacteria have the capability to communicate with each other. As part of their communications they are able to let one another know if there is something in the environment that is harming or killing them. Bacteria that are dying from an antibiotic will send signals to other bacteria before they die in an effort to warn them of the danger. The bacteria that is still living, receives these signals and begin to create a coding that causes them to encapsulate. In this state, bacteria become so resistant that nothing can kill them. They’ll simply stay and live in the infected areas without harming the body. While in this state they don’t reproduce, but they have become resistant to any chemical or antibiotic used against them and are able to pass on this genetic information to new bacteria that they end up reproducing. So although antibiotics have a great chance of working at first, the bacteria eventually adapt, rendering it ineffective. Once the conditions for infections and reproduction improve (this is usually due to a low immune system, bad nutrition, high level of stress and/or lack of sleep) they will come out of their encapsulated state and begin causing damage. This is why doctors don’t prescribe the same antibiotic every time. When you start a new antibiotic, the same process happens again. This puts you at risk since chronic infection can damage your tissues and continue to create a species or strain of bacteria that becomes ever stronger.
There are natural solutions to deal with respiratory issues – both acute and chronic conditions. One of our core areas of focus is to measure and look at the root of the problem. This is the only ways to provide the property tools and support that the body needs to heal. We recognize the body’s natural ability to deal with respiratory damage and illness.
If respiratory problems occur, drink a lot of liquid, rest and stay away from smoke or fumes. Smoking can create damage to the tissues in the respiratory system and creates a high risk for cancer. Some walking up a hill or stairs will help you work out your lungs to get sufficient air flow. Remember that your respiratory system can help you through times of stress. By being able to take in a slow, deep breath you can slow your heart rate and lower your blood pressure. Inhale through the nose slowly for three seconds, and exhale for the same amount of time.