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How The Lungs Work

Your lungs can breathe in and out as much as 36,000 times a day without you even having to think about it. Isn't it about time you reflected on all the hard work they do? We take a closer look at the inner workings of your lungs.

How Lungs Work - A Little Gas Goes a Long Way

Very simply, the function of the lungs is to absorb oxygen, a gas that your body needs to function, and expel carbon dioxide, a "waste gas" that your body can't use (no, not that kind of waste gas!). But nothing is ever as simple as it sounds. When you breathe in, your diaphragm and other muscles expand to allow room for your lungs to fill. The low air pressure in your empty lungs creates a vacuum that sucks air in from the higher-pressure environment. The air flows from your nose and mouth, through your trachea (windpipe) and into your lungs.

How Lungs Work - The Big Trade Off

Once the air reaches the lungs, it flows into increasingly narrow bronchioles (small airways that extend into the lobes of the lungs) until it reaches the alveoli (tiny, thin-walled sacks). Once in the alveoli, the oxygen in the air passes through the thin membrane walls and into the pulmonary capillary. From there, the oxygen binds to the hemoglobin in red blood cells. The red blood cells give back carbon dioxide, which then goes back through the membrane, into the alveoli, through the bronchioles, into the lungs and - woosh - is exhaled back out of your body. The oxygen that was passed off to the red blood cells is then circulated around your body.

How Lungs Work - Did U Know?

  • When removed for transplant, the lungs can survive outside the body longer than any other organ.
  • The left lung is smaller than the right lung to make room for the heart.
  • About 10,000 quarts (9,464 liters) of air go through your lungs every day.
  • The total surface area of the alveoli is around the size of a tennis court.
  • New babies at rest breathe between 40 and 50 times per minute but by the time they're five years old, their breathing rate decreases to around 25 times per minute.
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What % of Lung Cancer is Caused by Tobacco?

  • 30 per cent.
  • 50 per cent.
  • 75 per cent.
  • 95 per cent.

General In The Forums

Arabiakiss
Arabiakiss posted in Random:
Dear Kenzie,I know i know this is such a cheesy forum but i had to make it cause your one of the most trustworty people in KW ever. I love you so much...youve alwyas been there for me.....and never judged me....Kenzie there should be more people like you. And dont stress over that boy...if he likes you,,,hed contact you....but you know what i say....staying single is best...but ur kenzie..the most beautiful gurl ever so go and find a boy if you want..but remeber,ill always be here for you. I love you so much you gorgeous gurl....even if i am jealous of you. I care bout you and want you to tell me if someone ever upsets you.Love ArabiaPS. KENZIE YOU ARE AWESOME ILY
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Arabiakiss
Arabiakiss posted in Random:
Hey guys im Arabia......and well i made a forum bout my bff ever kenzie.
reply 4 minutes
zapsap
zapsap posted in Say Anything:
Or any language really. Hopefully Japanese or Korean though because those are the ones I'm most interested in. Bonus points if you're into the pop culture around either. (☞゚∀゚)☞ I've been looking for some study/practice buddies or someone to relate about self-study, or I could help you learn if you need help (mostly for Japanese because my Korean is very beginner). I could even do Japanese lessons if anybody wants them. (ง ͠° ͟ل͜ ͡°)ง
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hahh12
hahh12 posted in Say Anything:
11:47 AM
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RawrImacat
RawrImacat posted in Food:
Pizza, and I'm about to go eat some more tbh
reply about 5 hours