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Does Smoking Cause Emphysema?

What is Emphysema? It is a chronic disease where the air sacs or alveoli become damaged and lose their elasticity so that the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide is limited. The body requires the oxygen to survive.

Smoking damages this lung tissue. The duration of a smokers’ habit directly affects the damage caused by smoking, not only to the lungs but also to other organs. This damage from cigarette smoking may become irreversible.

It is a long-term, progressive disease of the lungs which causes a person to have shortness of breath due to the over inflation of the alveoli or the air sacs inside the lung. In people with emphysema, the lung tissues that are involved in the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide are destroyed.

Smoking is in fact the major cause for someone developing emphysema; sadly it is also the most preventable cause. Emphysema is triggered by smoking in two ways; One, it destroys lung tissue; secondly it causes inflammation and irritation of the airways. Both of these result in obstruction of airflow within the lungs. Cigarette smoking is a risk factor for developing emphysema; this fact is of such importance it cannot be amplified enough and it can develop at any age.

Lung tissue is destroyed by smoking cigarettes in many different ways. Firstly, the cells in ones airway that are responsible for clearing mucus and other secretions are directly affected by cigarettes. The sweeping action of tiny hairs called cilia lining the airways are on occasion disturbed. Long-term smoking leads to more damage of the cilia, they could also disappear from the cells lining the air passages. This sweeping motion of the cilia is important, without it occurring consistently mucous secretions cannot be cleared from the lower respiratory tract. Now that the mucous is unable to clear itself, smoke then causes mucous secretion to be increased. This is a deadly situation where infection is most likely going to happen, because of the buildup of bacteria and other organisms with a rich source of food.

Infection is prevented and fought by the immune cells within the lungs and they are also affected by cigarettes. These cells cannot fight bacteria as effectively or clear the lungs of particles in cigarettes, such as tar. This is a perfect combination for lung infections small and deadly. The Immune system is therefore always working and attacking bacteria, this releases destructive enzymes from the immune cells and causes inflammation.

Chronic exposure to cigarette smoke leads to the slow destruction of lung function. Enzymes released during this persistent inflammation leads to the loss of proteins responsible for keeping the lungs elastic. Also, the tissues separating the air cells (alveoli) from one another are also destroyed.

Emphysema is caused in many different ways, such as air pollution and breathing hazardous chemicals consistently. However smoking is still the most common and deadly cause of emphysema. If you don’t smoke, don’t start. If you do smoke, stopping today could prevent this deadly disease from attacking you or more importantly from increasing.

If you found this article of interest and would like to be notified as more articles become available subscribe on my website www.LifeCoachToQuitSmoking.com.  Also ‘Like’ my Facebook page to get exclusive offers, share your stories and join our community at www.facebook.com/lifecoachtoquitsmoking.

Customer Testimonials

Hi Maureen, You worked your wonders on me on the 16th of January 2013 for smoking and guess what? I haven’t had a smoke or even felt like one! It is truly amazing after smoking for over 30 years I am no longer a slave to the smokes. I feel better (although I was a bit grumpy for a week or so) but that has passed, I can breathe better and my cough has gone. But food tastes so much better so I am trying to watch what I eat. I do get a craving every now and then and it goes as quick as it come…
Giovanni (John) Castellana

Comments

  1. Maureen says:

    Yes. Fell free to ‘Like’ my facebook page http://www.facebook.com/lifecoachtoquitsmoking

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  1. […] are all well aware that smoking leads to various serious health problems such aslung cancer, emphysema, and heart disease. Smoking also weakens the immune systems and makes your body more prone to viral […]

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