In this article we will discuss about the functions of human respiratory system. This article will also help you to draw the structure and diagram of human respiratory system.
The human respiratory system is dominated by our lungs, which bring fresh oxygen (O2) into our bodies while expelling carbon dioxide (CO2). The oxygen travels from the lungs through the bloodstream to the cells in all parts of the body. The cells use the oxygen as fuel and give off carbon dioxide as a waste gas. The waste gas is carried by the bloodstream back to the lungs to be exhaled.
The lungs accomplish this vital process – called gas exchange – using an automatic and quickly adjusting control system. This gas exchange process occurs in conjunction with the central nervous system (CNS), the circulatory system, and’ the musculature of the diaphragm and the chest.
The human respiratory system can be divided into the upper respiratory tract and the lower respiratory tract.
The upper respiratory tract includes the following rigid structures:
i. Nasal cavities- Filter the air we breathe and provide a sense of smell.
ii. Pharynx- Acts in the respiratory and the digestive system.
iii. Larynx- Link between the pharynx and the trachea. Generates the voice with the presence of vocal folds.
iv. Trachea- The trachea is the bond with the lower respiratory tract. This is a flexible structure allowing the air to go down to the lungs.
In addition to gas exchange, the lungs and the other parts of the respiratory system have important jobs to do related to breathing.
i. Bringing all air to the proper body temperature.
ii. Moisturizing the inhaled air for necessary humidity.
iii. Protecting the body from harmful substances by coughing, sneezing, filtering or swallowing them, or by alerting the body through the sense of smell.
iv. Defending the lungs with cilia (tiny hair-like structure), mucus and macrophages, which act to remove harmful substances deposited in the respiratory system.