The Respiratory System: A Review of the System, Its Components, and Diseases That Can Affect It

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The Respiratory System
A Review of the System, Its Components, and Diseases That Can Affect It

What is the respiratory system? Why do we need to breathe? Can the process be changed or altered? The information in this paper will help you find out how the respiratory system works, what the components are that make the system work, and the many diseases that can change or alter the process.
The respiratory system is made up of the organs and tissues in your body that help you breathe. The goal of breathing is to deliver oxygen to the body and take away carbon dioxide, a waste product that can be deadly if allowed to accumulate. The cells of the human body require a constant stream of oxygen to stay alive. The body needs oxygen to provide …show more content…

The trachea diverts air from the nose to the lungs. It has a flap called the epiglottis to cover the opening of the trachea so food and liquid do not get into the lungs. Below the pharynx and on top of the trachea is the larynx, also known as the voicebox. The larynx is where we produce voice, it also helps us swallow and breathe. Air passes through the trachea and enters the bronchial tree, “a series of branching tubes of progressively smaller diameter that lead to the lung surface” (Whittemore, 2004, pg. 35). The bronchial tree is made up of the trachea, the two main bronchi, bronchioles (smaller airways), and alveoli (tiny spongy sacs at the ends of the bronchioles). The alveoli are surrounded by tiny blood vessels called capillaries. When you inhale, the air can move into the capillaries then into the blood. Blood then carries and distributes the oxygen from the air into the body. In return, carbon dioxide is carried from different parts of the body through the blood into the capillaries then into the alveoli where it is then exhaled. The diaphragm is a muscle that lies at the bottom of the lungs. It separates the chest cavity from the abdominal cavity. During inhalation, the diaphragm contracts, and pulls down. This causes the chest cavity to become larger and increase in volume which allows air flow into the lungs. During exhalation the opposite happens. The diaphragm moves up and the ribs move in and down, forcing air out. Many different things

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