what causes the bends?



  1. 0 Votes

    The bends is a decompression sickness that can happen to divers breathing compressed nitrogen and oxygen that is not properly metabolized by the body.  Due to the pressure increase as a diver goes deeper, the concentration of nitrogen in the tank increases as well to equalize the body.  This means, though, that more nitrogen enters the diver’s body the deeper he goes and the longer he stays underwater.  Since it is nitrogen and not oxygen, the body doesn’t process the gas and it stores up in the tissues.  If the diver returns to the surface too quickly, the nitrogen will exit the body in the form of gas bubbles.  It is like opening a carbonated soda and can be painful and lead to death. 

  2. 0 Votes

    Good question, rusrus.  Decompression sickness (aka the bends) is a condition found in scuba divers that happens as the result of a couple of things.  First, a person must dive down pretty deep, like around 100 feet.  Then, if they stay there for a while, some nitrogen from the air will absorb into their body.  If the person rises to the surface to quickly, their body doesn’t have enough time to decompress the nitrogen, and the result is decompression sickness, a painful, and potentially fatal condition.

    Hope this helps!

  3. 0 Votes

    The bends, or decompression sickness, is a result of excessive nitrogen buildup in divers. When a diver goes deeper, the nitrogen pressure from their tank increases constantly. Nitrogen continues to be absorbed by the tissues and buildup, as the body has no use for it. When the diver swims back to the surface, the nitrogen pressure decreases and the nitrogen wants to escape from the body as quickly as possible. The bubbles released obstruct blood flow, and can result in joint pain in the bends.

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