When Sleep Problems Get in the Way of Your Greatness

We often hear about the importance of a good night’s sleep. Sleep refreshes the body, plays an important role in brain development and even helps wounds heal more quickly. Poor sleep quality can increase the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes. Symptoms of sleep apnea, which include snoring, shallow breathing, a complete … Continue reading When Sleep Problems Get in the Way of Your Greatness

Did You Know?: A Muscle May Increase Pneumonia in Older People

By the year 2030, an estimated 70 million people in the U.S.—about 20 percent of the total population—will be older than 65. Going forward, this number is only expected to rise due to a combination of declining birth rates and increased life expectancy. A well-known witticism is “Age is an issue of mind over matter. … Continue reading Did You Know?: A Muscle May Increase Pneumonia in Older People

Spinal Cord Injury: Let’s Clear the Air(ways)

The spinal cord is the information processing highway in animals (including humans) that have a backbone. In humans, the spinal cord contains nerve cells called motor neurons that control movement in the muscle fibers of the body, similar to the way a puppeteer controls the movements of a puppet. About 17,000 people in the U.S. … Continue reading Spinal Cord Injury: Let’s Clear the Air(ways)

How Long Can You Hold Your Breath? The Dangers of Freediving

The appeal of freediving may lie in its freedom. Freedivers, without cumbersome scuba gear and noisy regulators, easily glide through tranquil waters toward coral or rocky reefs with scenes unobstructed by bubble trails. With dives often exceeding five minutes, they get to see up close and personal the colorful marine life that typically flees from … Continue reading How Long Can You Hold Your Breath? The Dangers of Freediving

Life After A Life-Saving Treatment: Lung Health in Young Adults Who Were Born Prematurely

In 1963, President John Kennedy’s wife, Jackie, gave birth to a little boy three weeks early. The baby survived only 39 hours before dying of hyaline membrane disease, more commonly known as respiratory distress syndrome. The first successful treatments began in 1991, and now nearly 99 percent of babies like the Kennedy baby survive prematurity. … Continue reading Life After A Life-Saving Treatment: Lung Health in Young Adults Who Were Born Prematurely

Reduce Your Risk of a “Lung Sunburn”: Stay Inside on Poor Air Quality Days

June 21 officially marked the first day of summer, bringing in long hot days of fun in the sun. Summer is also the time when air quality alerts start popping up, warning us to avoid breathing in bad air and limit activities outside. These alerts can put a damper on our outdoor plans, but why … Continue reading Reduce Your Risk of a “Lung Sunburn”: Stay Inside on Poor Air Quality Days

Inhale, Exhale and the Step We’ve All Been Missing

What is breathing? The simple explanation is that animals, including humans, breathe in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. But a recent discovery has blown the lid off this paradigm by showing that respiration is not so simple. In vertebrate animals, oxygen is breathed in through the lungs, bound to red blood cells and then transported through … Continue reading Inhale, Exhale and the Step We’ve All Been Missing