What are obstructive and restrictive lung diseases

restrictive lung disease

The disease is a collective term used more frequently than ever. Due to the increase in environmental pollution, the chance of affecting restrictive lung disease is exceptionally high. It is challenging to define disease precisely because of numerous factors behind it.

Among all the diseases, respiratory illness is widespread, as well as severe. Every year several million people die in this. The number of affected people is countless. Some of the world threatening pandemics such as influenza and COVID-19 directly connected to respiration. 

So, one question may be bugging on your mind that what is a disease and respiratory diseases? What are the causes? In this article, we will focus on respiratory illness, such as obstructive and restrictive lung disease. If you are curious and want to be more cautious about it, stay with us, and check out the full content. 

What is a disease? 

Generally, disease means the abnormal condition of the body. Besides, it may occur due to external as well as internal elements. The symptom of sickness may expose as infection, inflammation, internal organ failure or malfunction, etc. But the thing you should be clear that injury due to any kind of accident is not to consider as a disease. 

In summary, illness or disease represents the disruption in function and negative anomalies in physical structure. There are various types of conditions based on organ, take place in our body. Some of them related to heart, lung, kidney, and many more. Each body part expresses different signs and symptoms. 

Causes of disease

There are diverse reasons and ways to infect by disease. Mostly, people get attack by microorganisms such as virus bacteria and fungi. Microbes are microscopic on size and impossible to see by naked eyes. So, the chances are high to affect by it. Other causes include environmental pollution, genetic anomalies, reckless lifestyle, malnutrition, food, and feeding habits. 

What is a respiratory disease?

The disease which affects lungs and other organs of the respiratory system is known as a respiratory disease because of the infection and inflammation in the respiratory system such as lungs cause it. Lungs are the center of the breathing process. So, it is highly essential to know about lung diseases.  

Lung disease 

Lung disease refers to the imbalance functionally of lungs. Lungs are organs which help us in breathing. The most significant sign is breathing difficulty. Therefore, it will be difficult to take sufficient oxygen inside of our body for breath.

There are different types of lung diseases due to their infection source and cause severe respiratory problems. For instance- obstructive and restrictive lung diseases. So, what are obstructive and restrictive lung diseases?? Do you have any idea? If not, then stay with us till the end. 

Obstructive lung disease 

In the case of obstructive lung disease, it is difficult to breathe out air. People struggle to exhale inner air from the lungs. Due to a lack of proper breathing, people fail to take a more extended breath.

The problem is that the proportion of intaking and ejecting air is not the same. When the volume of intake and breath out oxygen is the far difference, people suffer respiration. Slow out breathing restricts the airflow and reduces the oxygen level. Reduction happens because of lung damage. There are different types of obstructive lung disease. 

Types of Obstructive lung disease 

There are different types of obstructive lung diseases. The most common ones are bronchial Asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), bronchiectasis, bronchiolitis. 

Bronchial Asthma

It is a common condition that affects the airways and creates a breathing problem. Besides, airways are the small tubes that transport air in and out of the lungs. Asthma occurs when airways trigger by defined factors. Therefore, the space of the tube gets narrow gradually. The inflammation and sticky mucus create thick the tube wall. The process reduces airflow Asthma is prevalent worldwide. The condition may occur in childhood or adult. Also, it may come genetically or environmentally.  

Symptoms of Asthma

  • They are frequently coughing and wheezing. 
  • Breathlessness 
  • Affected people feel tight in the chest. 

The inhaler is the first medication of Asthma. But use it when doctors recommend them. To relieve from Asthma, you should avoid cold weather, cigarette smoke, pollution, pollen, dust, mold, chemicals, animal fur, stress, and anxieties.    

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)

COPD is a long-term disease. It causes due to inflammation in airways and restricts the airflow. The term includes several breathing conditions which are chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Smoking, air pollution, dust fumes, and wood smoke can cause COPD. The symptoms are like Asthma. Symptoms include shortness of breath, wheezing, chest tightness, and chronic cough. 

Due to COPD doing regular physical activities and exercise is more laborious. Also, it causes damage in the air sac (alveoli) of bronchioles. The alveoli lose its flexibility, and the sac gets larger. So, the air trapped in the sac and oxygen supply reduce. Besides, COPD affected lungs fail to exhale the trapped air. That’s why taking a fresh breath is troublesome for COPD patients. It is one of the severe respiratory problems all over the world. 


It is always the best time to consult with experts at an early stage. Firstly, the doctor checks the external appearance of the patient. Secondly, the affected person forcibly suggested taking an intense breath. While breathing, a mouthpiece adds on the mouth, which connects with a machine. The tube collects the volume of air-breathing to calculate the rate. They are then comparing data with optimum breathing rate to specify the problem.

The doctor will take oral interviews from the patient to know the history. It gives the overall information and medical condition the person requires. 

Diagnosis through physical examines and CT scan or X-ray of the chest region. The reports help the doctor to analyze the health condition of the person. 


Treatment of Obstructive lung disease

Medicinal treatment

The objective of obstructive lung disease the treatment is too broad the airways.  Bronchodilators are the drugs that eliminate inflammation, increase airflow, and keep bronchial tube muscle relax. It opens the airways so you can breathe better. 

Inhaler it the best medication treatment for this disease like Asthma, such as inhaled corticosteroids (ICS). But steroids have some side effects like weight increase, emotional change. 

Blocking leukotriene inflammation by leukotriene blockers such as zileuton, zafirlukast etc.

Phosphodiesterase-4 of PDE-4 inhibitors such as theophylline prevent inflammation.  Some oral medicine use for COPD is methylxanthines.  

Antibiotics are another medication it controls bacterial lung infections. 

Lifestyle and rehabilitation 

Avoiding smoking because it increases that of COPD lung disease ranging from 35-50 percent. Regular exercise improves the capacity of the lungs. Besides, avoid dust and pollute the environment reduce the chance.

Disease management training, nutritional and psychological counseling can improve the condition.   

Oxygen therapy

Due to the breathing problem, oxygen deficiency takes place in the body. For supporting breathing nasal cannula and ventricular use for the supply of oxygen.   

Restrictive lung disease

The term restrictive lung diseases indicate any condition where there are not enough volumes of the lungs left to allow the air to go in. It means the restriction of lungs in respiration activity. It is a condition when the expansion of the lung is difficult. The situation arises because of the stiffness of the lungs.

Due to, breath people take fresh oxygen from the air. But, when the wind comes through the airways into the lungs, then lungs do not expand. It makes breathing extremely difficult. The volume of oxygen air intake gets limited, and respiration complexity takes place. Lung expansion reduces by nerve damage, the hardness of chest wall, and loss of chest muscle mobility.   

Types of restrictive lung disease

All the restrictive lung diseases are in 3 main categories. The classes are extrapulmonary, pulmonary parenchyma, neuromuscular. Let’s mention the sub-divisions 


  • Obesity- The patient is so obese that their chest part is overweight. Because of the massive chest part, the lungs are not able to expand properly.
  • Scoliosis- It is the sidewise relation of the spinal cord. The spinal cord restricts the lungs to expand, and chest movement reduces. 

Pulmonary parenchyma

  • Idiopathic- This disease arises from an uncertain source.
  • Autoimmune- For miss interpretation of the immune cell, they attack your body. 
  • Granulomatous- It is genetically connected. Generally, the patient’s immune system is weak. So, any microorganisms like bacteria and fungi can attack and occur infection.  


Here, muscles do not work, and below diseases occur. 

  • Myasthenia gravis- Causes muscles weakening, which express in eyes, face by swallowing. 
  • Diaphragm failure- It is structural muscle for the respiration process. Due to neuromuscular problems, these muscles fail to execute their function.
  • Polio- Poliovirus affect motor neuron. Therefore, reduce muscle strength relating to 


Treatment of restrictive lung disease

Oxygen therapy

As we know, the lack of lung expansion reduces oxygen intake. So, providing additional fresh oxygen into the lungs will help to take a breath. The therapy depends on the patient’s requirements. It may be on an occasional or daily basis. Due to, flammability of oxygen, it is risky to use. So, try to approach with proper caution. The therapy overdose may cause migraines, skin irritation, etc.

  • In an emergency, ventilation used to provide oxygen. Ventilators help to push the oxygen throughout the body. 


  •  Corticosteroids such as prednisone are a steroid-based drug that conceals the inflammation and slow down the process. The drug is effective for pulmonary fibrosis and sarcoidosis. However, it consists of some side effects, such as mental behavior change, sleepiness, weight gain, etc. 
  •  In the case of pulmonary fibrosis, sarcoidosis, and autoimmune condition, one drug is beneficial. The drug is mycophenolate mofetil, which improves and prevents the mention of diseases.
  •  Another drug is azathioprine. Doctors are working on it to remove respiratory inflammation.  


  • Proper diagnosis with clinical trials helps to identify the problem. 

Healthy lifestyle

  • One of the crucial points is to maintain a healthy lifestyle. It includes a nutritional diet and avoiding harmful oily foods. 
  • Overconsumption of unhealthy food is the primary reason for obesity. Obesity creates complication restrict the lungs expansion.
  • Besides, avoid smoking, the dusty place will decrease the chance of disease.   


General symptoms of obstructive and restrictive lung diseases

Both lung diseases relate to respiration difficulties. The main difference is obstruction creates exhaling problem and restriction generate inhaling problem. Due to that patient cannot take a full extended breath. The symptoms of both diseases are quite similar.

  • Long- and short-term coughing with saliva and mucus come out.
  • In both cases, chest muscles restrict lung expansion.
  • Shortness of breathing.
  • The patient suffers from depression and anxiety. 

Internally in both cases, inter-organ faces some factors. These are the reasons why these diseases happen.

  • Inflammation and bulge in the inner side to air tubes increase the wall thickness.
  • At the same time, the thick mucus layer makes the airway narrower.
  • The air sacs and lungs wall tissue damage that decreases the capacity of the lungs. 

 The longer the symptoms keep appearing, the situation will get worse. Importantly, an independent lifestyle will trigger the sing of disease. 

Final thoughts

Breathing is primary and continuous physical activity. The process allows oxygen to come into the bloodstream through all the organs. So, we can realize how vital respiration for living. People suffer from diverse types of respiratory diseases, and this includes obstructive and restrictive lung diseases. Every year all over the world the number of affected people increasing.

Besides, our environment is getting polluted dust particles that are favorable for this kind of disease. There are other factors, including lifestyle, heredity, etc. The consequence of these is severe. So, we should prevent it at an early stage; otherwise, your life will be at risk. In conclusion, there is always hope if we take proper treatment and aware of our instinct to avoid the possible danger.  


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here