World Asthma Day (WAD) (May 2, 2023) is organized by the Global Initiative for Asthma, (GINA) (www.ginasthma.org), a World Health Organization collaborative organization founded in 1993. WAD is held each May to raise awareness of Asthma worldwide.
GINA has chosen “Asthma care for All” as the theme for the 2023 World Asthma Day.
The majority of the burden of asthma morbidity and mortality occurs in low- and middle-income countries. GINA strives to reduce this burden by encouraging health care leaders to ensure availability of and access to effective, quality-assured medications. The Asthma care for All message promotes the development and implementation of effective asthma management programs in all resource countries.
GINA aims to increase and strengthen the link with local and national guideline makers. GINA also commits to ensure specific recommendations for environmental sustainability by sharing concerns about planetary health with a high priority on patient safety. GINA is working to improve the lives of people with asthma globally, and multi-faceted collaboration for improvement in all aspects of asthma care, for patients and for the environment is vital.
Here are some interesting facts about LUNGS, highlighting importance of this organ;
- An average person breathes about 13 pints of air per minute.
- Human lungs are not symmetrical. The right one is slightly larger than the left, and are designed like this because of the heart.
- The right lung has three lobes, while the left lung only has two. This contributes to the variation in size of both the lungs.
- Lungs are controlled by the brain. The brain tells the lungs how much to inhale or exhale, which is why one experiences changes in breathing without intention.
- It’s possible to live a healthy life with just one lung.
- A very unique fact about lungs compared to other organs is that they can float on water. No other organ in the body has the ability to do this. This is mainly because the lungs always contain a litre of air, even after being exhaled.
- The lungs are actually quite huge, and if are spread out fully, they would cover an entire tennis court.
- While breathing, body uses just 5% of the oxygen that has been inhaled. The rest is exhaled and the cycle repeats.
- Every hour, over 17ml of water is exhaled.
- Aside from breathing, lungs have other uses too. Through breathing, the body gets rid of around 70% of waste from lungs.
- The lungs are connected to the spinal cord at the back and chest bone at the front. They are kept within the rib cage for protection.
- Lungs are not an elusive organ in the body; mouth is directly connected to lungs through the connection of wind pipe and oesophagus.
- When inside the womb, a baby’s lungs are filled with fluid. Once born, it takes around 10 seconds for a baby to take its first breath, and is the result of the change in environment.
- Aside from breathing, lungs also play a key part in speech. The larynx, or voice box, is located above the wind pipe, thus pushing the air from the lungs through the voice box and converting it to sound.
- The average adult takes 16 breaths every minute. This can vary depending on the type of job, the activity undertaken and even the amount of stress.
- Smoking cigarettes is the leading cause of lung cancer due to the high amounts of tar which are left in the lungs. Around 80% of deaths caused by lung cancer are a result of smoking.
- Breathing deeply into the lungs can help to ease pain, relax more and ease stress. Breathing is used to an advantage in activities such as yoga and meditation.
- Even those who are non-smokers and exercise regularly to stay healthy, their lungs can still suffer problems if are affected by heavy pollution occurring around residence and / or workplace.
- Lungs have their own defence mechanisms to protect body against pollution and contamination as much as possible. There are cells in the lungs which produce mucous to act as protection against dust and dirt.
- Inhaling is just as important as exhaling. Without breathing back out, the body would retain too much dangerous carbon dioxide.
- Lungs contain a large amount of blood, and contrary to the idea of hollow lungs, there are actually very full!
- While the blood in the lungs is important, it can also add to the growth of bacteria. The mucous, lungs produce are able to combat this, while also preventing lungs from drying out.
- There is a close connection between lungs, blood vessels and brain.
- It is not always that coughing means a problem with lungs. Coughing around 10 times a day is very normal for the average person.
- Many lung problems, including asthma, can be cured or helped by engaging in regular exercise. Time to get the running shoes out!