Uses of Oxygen at Home
Oxygen therapy has become a fairly popular mode of treatment allowing people to lead more productive, active and healthier lives. Those suffering from chronic bronchitis, lung cancer, cystic fibrosis, asthma and congestive heart failure may benefit from oxygen therapy at home. A physician must write a prescription if oxygen therapy is to be undertaken at home. The flow rate, how much oxygen is needed per minute, and when it is needed are all detailed in the prescription. A blood test is advised and will indicate the oxygen level and help determine what the patient’s needs.
Oxygen therapy is a method by which more oxygen is taken into the lungs and bloodstream. It is occasionally used for people with specific diseases that deplete oxygen levels in the body due to difficulty breathing. This therapy makes it easier to breathe and reduces the burden on the heart. Some people need extra oxygen all the time while others may just need it occasionally.
There are three common ways of arranging oxygen therapy at home. One is the compressed gas cylinder where the gas is stored under pressure with a regulator that controls the flow. In the second option, the oxygen is stored in a cold liquid form in a vessel like a thermos. When it is released, the liquid converts into a gas and is breathed in just like the compressed gas. The third way is to get an oxygen concentrator, which is an electrically powered device that separates the oxygen out of the air to concentrate it and then store it.
Oxygen therapy can be done through three normal means of delivery. The nasal cannula is a two-pronged device inserted into the nostrils and then connected to a tube which carries the oxygen. People who need a high flow of oxygen generally use a mask. In transtracheal oxygen therapy, a small flexible catheter is inserted into the trachea or windpipe. The catheter is held in place by a necklace. Since, in this method, the oxygen bypasses the mouth, nose, and throat, a humidifier is absolutely essential at flow rates of 1 LPM or greater.
There should be no smoking if oxygen is being used in the house. When undergoing therapy, the patient must sit at least five feet away from any heat source. The oxygen cylinder should be placed on a firm surface or secured on a proper stand. The liquid oxygen vessel should be kept upright to prevent the oxygen from seeping out since it is so cold that it could hurt one’s skin. A fire extinguisher should be available in the home and the fire department should be informed if there is oxygen in the home.
Oxygen therapy has many benefits and few risks for the average person. A ten-minute session can enhance health in many ways. Anyone suffering from headaches, stress, fatigue, cramps and heat exhaustion can get almost immediate relief. In the long term, oxygen flushes out all the toxins and impurities from the blood and can be a deterrent to diseases like cancer. Oxygen is also known to improve memory and raise levels of concentration.