Lung age service
Are your lungs ageing faster than you?
The lungs are a vital organ in your body, taking around 12-20 breaths a minute. This is where the oxygen in the air that you breathe is transferred into your blood stream and exchanged with carbon dioxide. This process is vital for life.
In adulthood, your lung capacity will naturally reduce as you grow older and in healthy people this will not usually result in any symptoms.
Some people will find that their lung function reduces at a faster rate than others, causing long term health problems. This can be down to a number of factors, some of which you can influence.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
COPD is a condition which affects the lungs and has been diagnosed in around 1.2 million people in the UK. Approximately 25,000 people in the UK die from the condition every year. It is a progressive, non-reversible disease which can include symptoms such as coughing, wheezing and breathlessness – particularly during any increase in effort or exercise.
Looking after your lungs
- Stop smoking
- Avoid passive smoking
- Prevent inhalation of dust particles
- Eat healthily
- Exercise regularly
- Manage any lung conditions
Smoking can cause long-term damage to your lungs because the toxins contained in tobacco can narrow the airways and damage the alveoli (small air sacs where oxygen is transferred from your lungs into the blood stream). In addition, small hairs in the lungs called cilia are restricted or damaged completely so their function of ‘cleaning’ the lungs cannot be performed.
Avoid passive smoking
Passive smoking can also be equally harmful as smoking itself as the damaging toxins are inhaled through second hand smoke. Wherever possible steer clear of smokers.
Prevent inhalation of fine dust particles
If you have a job which exposes you to high levels of fine dust particles e.g. on building sites or bicycle courier, it is important that you take actions to limit the amount that you inhale. Wearing a face mask can help to reduce their intake.
Diet & exercise
Having a healthy diet – low in saturated fat, salt and sugar and high in fruit and vegetables, as well as limiting alcohol intake, helps to keep your lungs healthy and avoid infection.
Manage lung conditions
If you have already been diagnosed with COPD or asthma you are likely to be prescribed medication by your doctor. By following the dosage instructions you have been given, you will reduce the impact that the condition has on your lungs and be supported in managing the symptoms. If you have any questions about this or need advice on how to take your medication properly, ask your pharmacist.
Taking the Lung Age test
To take the Lung Age test you will be asked to breathe out through a single-use mouthpiece, which is connected to the Lung Age device.
You will need to exhale into the machine as quickly as possible.
The machine requires you to complete the test three times as it will then select the most reliable of the three measurements as the final result.
Understanding your results
You can review the results of the test with a member of the pharmacy team and will be able to take home a Lung Age Test Report which contains information about:
Your Lung Age vs Your real age
Whether the airflow from your lungs flows at a normal speed, or if there is some form of obstruction (obstruction level and COPD level)
If your Lung Age is higher than your real age, this may be due to a variety of reasons.
Our pharmacists are here to help with advice and support.
Price: Our Lung Age Service is available FREE of charge and always with no appointment necessary.
Frequency: When required...