It is seen that the coronavirus is directly infecting the lungs. COVID-19 is a respiratory disease, one that especially reaches into your respiratory tract, which includes your lungs. COVID-19 can cause a range of breathing problems, from mild to critical. Older adults and people who have other health conditions like heart disease, cancer, and diabetes may have more serious symptoms.
The new coronavirus can infect the upper or lower part of your respiratory tract. It travels down your airways. The lining can become irritated and inflamed. In some cases, the infection can reach all the way down into your alveoli.
About 80% of people who have COVID-19 get mild to moderate symptoms. You may have a dry cough or a sore throat. Some people have pneumonia, a lung infection in which the alveoli are inflamed.
Even before you can see the symptoms emerging, 25% of the lungs are already infected with the virus. However, if you take expert help then you can save your lungs from the infection.
As the infection travels your respiratory tract, your immune system fights back. Your lungs and airways swell and become inflamed. This can start in one part of your lung and spread.
How do you know lungs are infected?
If you are having trouble in breathing then know that the virus is infecting the lungs.
If there is swelling or strong pain in the lower portion of the lungs then immediately consult a doctor.
Dry cough, pain in the chest while coughing is also signs of being COVID-19 positive.
COVID-19 can cause lung complications like pneumonia, acute respiratory distress, and in some fatal cases, total collapse of the lungs.
In case of pneumonia caused by this virus, the air sacs in the lungs are filled with fluid and the valves of the lungs get inflamed, leading to breathing difficulties accompanied by coughing.
While most people recover from pneumonia without any lasting lung damage, this particular virus may cause breathing difficulties that take longer to withdraw completely
How to improve lung functions
Two functions determine overall lung health – lung capacity, which is the extent to which lungs can expand, which is genetics.
The second is ‘lung function’ which is the processing of oxygen and distribution to the body. This function grows till the age of 25, after which it gradually reduces.
Improving lung function should be the primary aim and this can be achieved majorly by exercises.
A minimum of 30 minutes for adults and 60 minutes of physical exercise for children every day is imperative to keep any lung distress at bay.
Physical exercise allows us to take deeper breaths than usual, expand and contract the lung inner valves, and ensures optimum oxygen saturation levels, to ensure healthy lung functions.
It also keeps a check on the Haemoglobin and RBC level in the blood to ensure unrestricted flow to and from the lungs.
Running, brisk walking, cycling, swimming are all good examples of suggested physical exercises.
The best way to reduce chronic inflammation is to ensure proper nutrition, particularly with foods high in antioxidants like fruits and vegetables.
Bananas, apples, tomatoes, and grapes are all rich in natural antioxidants and can reduce inflammation over time.