Now that we answered our initial question, what is breathing and is it different from respiration, we arrive at our first follow-up question. How do other systems of the body contribute to or affect respiration?

In the articles we researched, the respiratory system (a no-brainer) and the cardiovascular (a.k.a. circulatory) system are implicated in breathing and respiration. But because the respiratory system affects every vascular cell in the body, how many other systems of the body are affected by respiration?

And, let’s not forget the musculoskeletal system. Without the musculoskeletal system at play, how are we able to inhale and exhale? Hmm… Think of CPR and the bag valve mask for manual resuscitation. It doesn’t work if you just hold it over someone’s face. Kinda like our lungs. Without the primary and secondary muscles of respiration (ahem, under the musculoskeletal purview), your lungs are just air sacks, like a balloon that hasn’t been inflated. So what’s really interesting about investigating this breathing and respiration hoop-de-do is that it reveals just how many systems of the body overlap and communicate with each other.

Next up, how is this particular information practical and/or useful to me?