How to Rebuild the Lungs After Quitting Smoking

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After quitting smoking, it is important to help the lungs rebuild and heal by taking vitamins, drinking plenty of fluids and taking supplements for healthy tissue growth. Encourage healthy lung function with advice from a smoking cessation specialist in this free video on ways to quit smoking.

Part of the Video Series: Stop Smoking
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This is Michela Christensen from Breathe California. Repairing your lungs after you quit smoking is not an easy task because the lungs are an organ inside your body, there is no way for doctors to go in and to clean it out or scrape it out. It's got to heal on its own. Just as if you lost a limb, there is no way that limb would grow back as is the lungs. The lungs can heal and replenish itself and get rid of toxins and get rid of the tar and the nicotine in the lungs but it's not going to regrow and you're not going to regrow a lung. But you can help them heal and you can make the process quicker. Things like vitamins, grape seed oil things like that can help to repair the lungs. Vitamin A helps with tissue, healthy tissue and again drinking lots of water. So when you do feel like you're coughing things up, a lot of times that's the nicotine or the tar trying to leave your body. So the way that your lungs work, this is a sample of a lung slice. This is the slice of a lung. So the best way to describe your lung functions are bubble wrap. Everybody knows what bubble wrap is. Bubble wrap is the packaging they use inside packages. We all like to pop it, so bubble wrap. Lots and lots of bubbles like bubble wrap packed together and when you smoke a lot of times these bubbles start to pop and you lose the bubbles. Normally these bubbles help the oxygen come in and out. There's also little hairs on the bubbles that help to filter the oxygen that's going in and when you're smoking you're covering those hairs kind of like hair gel and keeping them from kind of flowing in the wind and cleaning up the air. So this is, the bubbles are nice and tight and this is what it's supposed to look like. Once you begin smoking, after many years of smoking this is what an emphysema lung would look like. You can see in this lung that most of the bubbles are popped. It's very widespread and it doesn't look anything like bubble wrap or a sponge. The bubbles are very far apart from each other. There's a lot of gaps in it. Now can you function with a lung like this? Yes, once you quit smoking, the black part, you can see this lung is a lot clearer. The black yucky stuff in the lung are the tar, will start to leave. Again that is the smoker's cough will start to leave and your body can learn to function and function well and live a long life after quitting smoking. This is a tar jar. This helps us to illustrate the amount of tar that one would get into their lungs from just smoking half a pack of cigarettes a day for an entire year. So if you're an entire cigarette smoker your jar would be completely full. This is the amount that would get put into your lungs after just one year of smoking. So this is the kind of stuff that is coughed up when you are having your smoker's cough after you have quit and this is the tar that covers the cilia or the hair in the lungs that keeps your lungs from being filtered. So repairing your lungs includes getting rid of this and making it easier for your lungs to function even if there is a little bit less to work with. This is Michela Christensen from Breathe California.

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