Quality health cover that meets your needs doesn’t need to be complicated or too expensive. We offer you great cover, easy claims, and above all we tell it like it is – Affinity Health

To find out more, give us a call today!

One of our qualified and friendly agents will be happy to assist you.

Call Center:

0861 11 00 33


086 607 9419

General Enquiries:


Find a Doctor/Dentist

or Dentist


Where can you go?


Near me

The Official National Department of Health COVID-19 Support Service: 060 012 3456 (WhatsApp)

Find a Doctor/Dentist

Near me


Where can you go?


Near me


Chronic Lung Disorders Affecting Young Adults

Early life events like smoking and exposure to environmental irritants that increase the likelihood of asthma and related respiratory illnesses in young adults are associated with several lung disorders. Even though lung diseases can be traced back to early childhood, there are instances where lifestyle habits play a significant role. Read on to learn more about chronic lung disorders affecting young adults.


According to research, smoking is the main contributor to chronic bronchitis among young adults. Research suggests that more than 75% of young adult smokers develop chronic bronchitis. It occurs when the breathing tubes are inflamed, leading to an overproduction of mucus. This can affect your breathing by blocking the air passageway in your lungs.

Chronic bronchitis, an incurable disease, can also trigger emphysema, damaging the walls and air sacs deep in the lungs. It’s important to note that both conditions present similar symptoms, including excessive coughing and shortness of breath, which can help you identify these health issues early on. Other symptoms include:

  • Coughing up mucus.
  • A tight chest.
  • Wheezing.
  • Swollen feet.
  • Heart failure.


The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported an increase in hospitalisations that are associated with excessive use of vaping products. E-cigarette or vaping use-associated lung injury (EVALI) has grown considerably among young adults. Its primary health consequences are linked to an increasing list of severe lung illnesses.

A synthetic form of vitamin E, vitamin E acetate, is found in specific THC-containing vaping products. Research suggests that this chemical can cause severe lung damage when inhaled. Additionally, traces of this chemical are only found in the lung fluid of patients who use vaping products.


As you age, common irritants in your home or work environment can trigger inflammation or swelling in the airway linings. For instance, if you have allergies or smoke cigarettes, you might be vulnerable to developing adult-onset asthma, a specific type of asthma commonly diagnosed in people older than 20. These conditions can be severe, and knowing the potential triggers and symptoms is important.

Continued exposure to triggers such as pollen, smoke, or vitamin E acetate can increase the sensitivity in your airways, making it difficult to breathe. Moreover, it can lead to chronic bronchitis when you have an ongoing cough and wheezing. However, you might need an accurate diagnosis using the following tests to determine if you have asthma or bronchitis:

  • Undergoing a chest x-ray to assess for lung growths responsible for your symptoms.
  • Blowing into a device to measure how well your lungs work.
  • Getting a sample of the mucus in your lungs to rule out other infections.

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Did you know that certain lifestyle habits such as smoking, lack of exercise and being overweight can affect your lung health and increase the risk of developing Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)? However, by adopting healthy habits, you can significantly reduce your chances of developing several chronic lung illnesses. In most cases, long-term exposure to environmental irritants can lead to chronic lung inflammation accompanied by coughing and an overproduction of mucus.

Creating healthy habits is crucial for your lung health. You might not think about it often, but your lungs are a significant part of your respiratory system. Here’s what you can consider implementing to reduce the risk of respiratory illnesses such as COPD:

  • Quit smoking and avoid second-hand smoke.
  • Maintain regular physical activity to increase your lung capacity.
  • Practice good hygiene to reduce the risk of infections.
  • Get regular health screenings.
  • Maintain a healthy diet.

Early prevention of lung health concerns is the first step to minimising the spread and potentially life-threatening consequences. If you smoke, you should consider quitting to reduce further lung damage associated with severe lung diseases. Signing up for Affinity Health medical insurance provides unlimited, managed doctor visits for regular health screenings to help with early diagnosis of chronic lung disorders.

About Affinity Health

Affinity Health is South Africa’s leading health coverage provider, offering you a range of options at affordable rates, including access to the widest national provider network. We understand the importance of having medical insurance that meets your needs, budget, and lifestyle. Our healthcare products are designed to protect you and your family when it matters the most. We strive to give our clients peace of mind and the highest standard of service. For more information, follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

If you would like to leave a comment


Get A Free Quote