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Will helium blow up your lungs.

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posted on Feb, 1 2009 @ 10:51 AM
My mother told me that if I inhale helium my lungs will explode.I used the search engine to no avail.Dad hasn't had any harmful effects.Is there any truth to this?Mod please post in right form.

posted on Feb, 1 2009 @ 10:56 AM
Well I can tell you this.

If you do it too many times in a row you get a terrible headache.

Take my word for it once or twice is cool you start doing it 5-6 times non stop to be the life of the party and your head will make sure your no longer partying.

Now if you breath it directly from a tank and not a balloon yes it can and chances are will blow up your lungs so to speak. People have died from sucking on the actual tank.

Reason being the tank blows it out at such a force it can rupture the aveoli in your lungs killing you. That is what absorbs the oxygen into the system from the lungs so to speak.

Edit: I guess to be more correct Aveoli absorb what ever is breathed into the lungs and exchange CO2 for it but normally it should be some type of oxygen we're breathing in.

[edit on 1-2-2009 by Darthorious]

posted on Feb, 1 2009 @ 10:57 AM

The first thing to say about breathing in helium is: DON'T DO IT! There are reported cases of people trying to have fun with the effect of this gas, but actually dying instead. It's not that helium is poisonous; it's actually the least reactive of all the chemical elements. The problem is simply that helium displaces the air from your lungs, and you need the oxygen in air to live

seems pretty harmless at first though but I looked it up for you and it can be apparently pretty dangerous

although it seemed pretty unlikely to me so I looked for some more sources and ye apparently it can be pretty dangerous although it won’t make your lungs explode it will just deplete the oxygen from them

It can be. Breathing in pure helium deprives the body of oxygen, as if you were holding your breath. If you couldn't breathe at all, you'd start to die in minutes—as soon as your body exhausted the supply of oxygen stored in the blood. But helium speeds up this process: When the gas fills your lungs, it creates a diffusion gradient that washes out the oxygen. In other words, each breath of helium you take sucks more oxygen out of your system. After inhaling helium, the body's oxygen level can plummet to a hazardous level in a matter of seconds.

posted on Feb, 1 2009 @ 11:00 AM
If you inhale a regular breath of helium, you will sound like a chipmunk (or Lisa Simpson). That's about all. Deep sea divers breathe helium all the time at extreme depths (under pressure) and it's perfectly safe when used properly.

This type of question would be better suited to BTS (Below Top Secret).


posted on Feb, 1 2009 @ 11:17 AM
reply to post by InfaRedMan

Deep sea divers DO NOT breath helium when diving. They can use either Heliox (helium / oxygen mix) or Trimix (helium / nitrogen / oxygen mix). Those are the 2 most popular gases for deep sea diving. The body CANNOT survive off helium alone. Helium displaces oxygen in the lungs, and can kill you if in too high a concentration.

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