If you’ve ever been around a heavy smoker (or are one yourself), you may have experienced the shallow and difficult breathing that comes with long-term smoking. Or maybe you have even been around a person who has to use an oxygen tank to survive due to emphysema.
Below are a few examples of the dangers that long-term smoking can have on an individual’s ability to breathe:
- Smoking can create heavy mucous buildup.
- Blood vessels and air pockets in your lungs can be destroyed.
- A person’s cilia in their lungs can be destroyed, making it difficult to breathe.
- COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease) diseases can arise from smoking, such as emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
According to Livestrong.com:
The chemicals in tobacco smoke frequently cause lung tissue to slowly losing its normal elasticity. Such damage makes it more difficult for your lungs to contract and expand correctly while you try to breathe. Another common complication of smoking involves excess production of mucus in the lungs in response to constant irritation from toxic chemicals, which can cause your airways to become narrower when mucus accumulates. As a result, the air you breathe in will not be able to flow out properly or supply your blood with the amount of oxygen your body requires.
But there is good news for those who enjoy the act of smoking – whether for social reasons or otherwise. Modern alternatives to smoking, such as e-cigarettes, are readily available for conscious smokers who want to preserve their lungs and their beloved habit.