Do you suffer from asthma, sleep apnea, or cystic fibrosis? Are you wondering about the benefits of oxygen therapy?
Getting enough oxygen can save your life if you have impaired lung function. The amount of oxygen your receive, as well as the duration of your treatment, will depend upon your condition. If your doctor has prescribed oxygen therapy, you may be wondering how it can help you.
Here’s what you need to know about the benefits of oxygen therapy.
What Is Oxygen Therapy?
Oxygen therapy is a medical therapy that supplies extra oxygen to anyone suffering from an oxygen deficiency. It can help patients breathe better and improve their oxygen levels.
Conditions that keep your lungs from absorbing oxygen include pneumonia, heart failure, and lung disease. Symptoms of low oxygen include rapid breathing, shortness of breath, or a fast heart rate. You may also notice sweating, confusion, or changes in skin color.
Oxygen can come in different forms. Gas tanks, for example, deliver oxygen in pulses rather than continuously. Oxygen concentrators take oxygen from the room and concentrate it for therapeutic use.
Liquid oxygen is helpful for people who are very active. It can get stored in a smaller tank, which is more portable.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy allows people to breathe in pure oxygen while in a pressurized room or chamber. It’s often used to treat wounds or serious infections.
There are several oxygen therapy benefits offered to patients.
- Help For COPD
Oxygen therapy can increase survival rates for those with low levels of oxygen. This is especially true if you have chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD.
Those with COPD will also notice an improvement in other symptoms. These include shortness of breath, fatigue, and dizziness.
There are also fewer complications from COPD for those receiving oxygen therapy. It can stabilize pulmonary hypertension, decrease arrhythmias, and reduce worsening of symptoms.
- Reduce Your Risk of Heart Disease and Other Complications
Low blood oxygen levels can lead to a number of serious health complications. If left untreated, it can lead to high blood pressure, pulmonary hypertension, and heart attacks.
Oxygen therapy can reduce your risk for these complications by increasing your blood oxygen levels. It can help your lungs to meet your body’s oxygen needs and reduce your risk of other conditions.
- Help With Exercise
Oxygen therapy can allow you to become active and maintain an exercise routine. Without supplemental oxygen, you may find that it’s more difficult to breathe because exercise will make your lungs work harder.
However, exercise with oxygen therapy is possible. It will help you breathe better and get more active.
Oxygen therapy can improve your exercise tolerance and make you more capable of completing physical activities. It can improve your endurance and reduce your discomfort. Oxygen may also allow you to exert yourself more as your exercising becomes more intense.
- Better Quality of Life
An increased supply of oxygen can improve your alertness, sleep, and energy levels. This can allow you to get more done during the day and engage in activities you enjoy.
When you’re able to get out and socialize with friends, your state of mind and overall sense of well-being will improve too. The depression and anxiety that can result from low oxygen levels will subside as you begin to engage in the life you love.
- Improved Cognitive Function
Getting more oxygen to your brain can help your thinking and reasoning. When your oxygen levels are low, you may experience brain fog or fatigue.
Cognitive impairment can affect your judgment and memory. It can also increase your risk for mental health concerns.
Oxygen therapy can improve blood flow to the brain and thus prevent cognitive decline. It can also prevent mild levels of decline from turning into more serious issues such as dementia.
- Help With Sleep
Sleeping makes your breathing rate slow down.
This can make you even more vulnerable to hypoxemia, which is a very low concentration of oxygen in the blood. If your lung function is already limited, a drop in your breathing rate can really cause your oxygen levels to become unhealthy while you sleep.
A lack of healthy oxygen can make it difficult for you to breathe and harm your sleep quality. However, with oxygen therapy, you will get a more restful night of sleep. You’ll also experience less shortness of breath during the night, which can allow you to sleep better.
- Safer Air Travel
Those with COPD may think twice about traveling by air since it increases their risk of low oxygen concentrations. However, in-flight oxygen therapy can make it safer to travel this way.
If you’re considering flying with oxygen, you’ll want to speak to your healthcare provider first. They can provide you with detailed instructions on what you should do.
- Improving Psychological Symptoms
Those who experience shortness of breath often may experience anxiety and depression. Oxygen can help you feel more comfortable in general, and even improve your overall sense of well-being.
Oxygen can reduce anxiety levels and create a calming effect. Unpleasant emotions such as stress are gradually replaced with a more peaceful state of mind.
The Benefits of Oxygen Therapy
If you suffer from reduced lung capacity, oxygen therapy can improve your physical, mental, and emotional health. The benefits of oxygen therapy go beyond your breathing. They can make it possible for you to live your life to the fullest each day.
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