Emphysema is literally the worst. There is no cure for this disease. Once you have it, it will be with you forever. There is no going back.
How do you get it?
I’d say 90% of people that get it are smokers. The other 10% might be because of inhalants, like working at a paper mill or in a mine, something of that nature.
Construction workers are at risk as well.
Here’s what happens:
Shortness of breath – This is a common symptom among all respiratory illnesses, except in this case, it’s more severe.
Imagine breathing through a straw 24 hours a day. Would you be able to handle it?
This is what breathing is like when you have emphysema:
Take a deep breath and hold it. Without exhaling, take another deep breath and hold it. Don’t exhale. Now take one more final deep breath and hold it.
Feel the pressure?
That third breath is what EVERY breath is like when you have emphysema. You are literally gasping for air.
People with this disease have a lung capacity between 10-50% roughly. That’s less than half of what you’re supposed to have. Can you imagine breathing like that everyday?
Chronic cough/wheezing – This is another symptom that is common among all respiratory illnesses, but again, this is much worse.
With lung capacity a mere fraction of what it’s supposed to be, coughing and wheezing will be non-stop. Oxygen tanks will be completely necessary, and inhalers must be present at all times.
Again, there is no cure for this disease, and once you have it, there is no stopping it. Sure you can suppress the coughing for a short time, but it will ALWAYS return.
It’s pretty sad.
Weight loss/no appetite – If you can’t breathe, you have no desire to eat, even if you’re hungry.
When I had bronchitis, the mere movement of my hand going back and forth while brushing my teeth winded me.
Emphysema will be much worse. Those stricken with this disease will eventually experience weight loss, because it’s too much of a burden to eat.
It’s possible to suppress the chronic cough and wheezing just enough so you can eat comfortably, but it’s not easy, and it’s definitely not enjoyable.
Barrel chest – Because there is a lot of air in your lungs that’s not being exhaled, your rib cage remains in an expanded form.
Your lungs are inflated. There is air stuck inside and that causes the appearance of a barrel chest.
The shortness of breath is the main cause of this, because you aren’t exhaling everything you’re inhaling.
As you can see, the symptoms can be horrific. Again, there is no cure for this disease, and once you have it, it’s with you for life.
Is the pain and not being able to breathe worth all those years of chain smoking? If you could, would you go back? What would you tell your children?
Not being able to breathe is a horrible way to die. The fact that smoking is the cause of it is just terrible.
If you’ve had bronchitis, or asthma, or any respiratory illness due to smoking cigarettes, then you need to be very careful and QUIT!
No smoker is immune to this, and once it strikes, it’s too late.
Give yourself a fighting chance to avoid this terrible disease.
Don’t wait! Don’t be a statistic. Don’t regret not quitting earlier. You do not want to end up like this.
If you stop this very instant, and never look back, you won’t have to experience what life could potentially throw at you if you choose to keep smoking.