How to Make the Most out of Your Supplemental Oxygen Therapy
If you don't already know how beneficial oxygen therapy is for people with COPD and other respiratory chronic conditions this blog post will explain all of the reasons this therapy can make such a big difference their lives.
We understand that it may seem like oxygen therapy is an invasive aspect of your daily routine, however supplemental oxygen offers the user freedom, energy, and livelihood, it also adds years to your life!
That being said, it is important to discuss the side effects of oxygen therapy and how we can work with you to make it more comfortable.
If you are looking at your oxygen device every morning and dreading using it, you are not taking advantage of what this therapy has to offer you.
If done correctly, you could start to see your oxygen device as a ticket to anywhere in the world, as independence from caretakers and hospitals, your breathing device should give you life and excitement for the future.
In order to address all of the positive aspects of oxygen therapy it is essential that we discuss the drawbacks and how you can overcome the negative aspects. Simply put, there are obstacles that you may need to overcome while getting used to your breathing device.
There are some aspects of your day that will become the “new normal”. Lastly, there are certain discomforts and side effects associated with oxygen therapy. That is why we are going to discuss ways to normalize your oxygen therapy and help you adjust to daily life.
How to overcome oxygen therapy obstacles
One of the first and biggest obstacles you may face after being prescribed home oxygen, is education, this means learning about your illness and how oxygen will affect you.
It is critical you are willing to handle new and sometimes confusing pieces of machinery along with the medical jargon and language about your condition.
We have a great blog titled “COPD Education is Key: 15 Questions you Need to ask your Doctor” that can help you understand some of the questions about your breathing capabilities and what this means when you are looking to buy an oxygen device.
This is a great place to start if you want to understand more about COPD testing, symptoms, and treatments.
After you are capable of communicating with your doctor effectively, you can begin to understand their reasoning as to why you qualify for oxygen therapy, and how you can get the most out of this COPD treatment method.
The next obstacle you must overcome is choosing the oxygen therapy device that is best for you and your lifestyle. This is complicated because everyone is different and everyone’s COPD affects them differently.
Therefore, it is important you talk to a respiratory specialist who can ask you questions about your lifestyle and your oxygen prescription in order to match the perfect oxygen device to your specific needs and wants.
A specialist works with a number of people everyday, they know oxygen devices inside and out, so once they have an understanding about you and your oxygen prescriptions they will be able to match you with a device that will help you get back to your daily routine!
Our respiratory specialists will connect you with a portable oxygen concentrator because a portable oxygen concentrator (POC) is going to be the most cost-effective way to administer oxygen to manage your COPD. If you purchase your POC there are no recurring costs, you will never have to worry about refilling your oxygen tanks, and they are simple and user friendly!
Simply by utilizing a portable oxygen concentrator rather than an oxygen tank or oxygen canisters, you are saving money while minimizing a lot of the obstacles that come with oxygen tanks.
Portable oxygen concentrators are also much safer to use because there is no reserved compressed liquid or oxygen gas that would otherwise create a fire hazard. Instead, the concentrators extract the surrounding air, purify, and condense it into the medical grade oxygen that you breathe in.
That being said, there are still certain adjustments and challenges that come with you oxygen concentrators.
One of the best ways to overcome any obstacle is to learn more and educate yourself about the subject. Knowledge is power, and that is why we’re now offering a FREE Thrive eLearning Course with the purchase of your Inogen One G5 portable oxygen concentrator.
We know how important pulmonary wellness is, but this means more than just having a great portable oxygen concentrator; it requires you to make other lifestyle changes involving your diet, exercise routine, and more.
In an effort to help you with all aspects of your pulmonary wellness regimen, we wanted to give this immersive learning experience to our customers so they can educate themselves beyond the oxygen therapy and adjust other complicated aspects of life while dealing with COPD or other respiratory diseases.
Thrive is an accessible, all-in-one online training course that aims to provide you with simple, practical, and actionable tips for managing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
With this program, you’ll also have access to one-on-one counseling with certified pulmonary experts, support group opportunities, online learning courses, and much more! Below is a full list of what you’ll receive:
- Direct access to a private support group (patients, caretakers, and experts)
- Years of COPD and respiratory illness knowledge
- Step-by-step disease management regimen
- Best selling e-books and guides
- Step-by-step breathing exercises
- Learn about exacerbations and how to prevent them
- Speak with a nutritionist about refining and improving your diet
COPD symptoms can only be managed with impeccable lifestyle choices. This ePulmonary Advanced Online Workshop will help you get back on track and locate any anomalies in your COPD treatment plan.
The Inogen One G5 will provide you with the oxygen and freedom that you need to live life on your own terms, but this training program will make you unstoppable!
This Thrive ePulmonary Online Training Program is a $497 value, but we’re offering it for FREE! Order your Inogen One G5 today and experience the freedom you want and deserve! Fill out the blue box to the right of your screen, or call a respiratory specialist at 1-800-943-1201 and find out how you can purchase a Inogen One G5 portable oxygen concentrator.
Your goals for oxygen therapy
Your goal when it comes to oxygen therapy should be to continue as many of your usual activities as you can!
You should work with your doctor and oxygen supply company to get oxygen equipment that will allow you to do every activity you still enjoy. Choosing the right type of equipment for you and your lifestyle is crucial — the right portable oxygen equipment can play a major role in improving your quality of life, starting by relieving a lot of your symptoms.
Oxygen therapy works to relieve breathlessness, so that you can exercise and get outdoors more often. Not only does oxygen therapy give you the accessibility to do more it also gives you more time! By this, I mean that oxygen therapy studies from multiple sources suggest that long-term oxygen therapy extends the life expectancy of COPD patients with low blood oxygen levels.
Even though there are a lot of great aspects associated with oxygen therapy, there are side effects that you should be aware of, so that you know how to handle it.
Get comfortable, oxygen therapy is your new normal
Side effects of oxygen therapy may include:
- The skin around the face mask or nasal cannula can get irritated.
- The inside of your nose might become dry.
- You may get nosebleeds once in a while.
- In the morning, you may wake up tired or with a headache.
In some cases, you can avoid these side effects by adjusting the amount of oxygen you get, meaning that you should continue to speak with your doctor about your oxygen prescription.
The equipment you use may need to be changed if you’re having constant problems and irritation, but most of the time there is just a small adjustment period where your body has to get used to the new normal.
If you’ve ever used a bulky and cumbersome continuous flow concentrator or an oxygen tank, you know that they’re anything but user-friendly.
While both methods do offer you the oxygen you need, it doesn’t feel like they were built with your comfort in mind.
If you are looking for a portable oxygen concentrator that was designed to be comfortable, The Caire Freestyle Comfort got its name for a reason; it was specifically designed to be comfortable to wear and use.
This oxygen unit has a curved design that fits the natural shape of your body. While you’re walking, it will stay at your side instead of sliding around and interfering with your natural movements.
All of the buttons for your oxygen control as well as the power switch are conveniently located on the top of the unit and the batteries can be easily pulled off the bottom of the unit for replacement.
The Caire Freestyle Comfort is one of the lightest portable oxygen concentrators on the market, weighing in at just 5 pounds with the 8-cell battery and 6 pounds with the 16-cell battery.
This means you’ll be able to carry your oxygen unit without ever experiencing back pain or unnecessary strain that can ruin your day.
There is some adjusting you have to get used to when you first get started on your oxygen therapy regime, but soon enough your life with your trusted POC will be the new normal. A big part of enjoying life while using oxygen therapy is having the right equipment.
This means having a POC that meets your oxygen requirements but also allows you the freedom and opportunity to travel, exercise, and socialize.
The other aspect, is education and this means learning about you disease and how it should be managed on a daily basis along with your oxygen therapy.
The bottom line when it comes to oxygen therapy is that it is a blessing in disguise. When you are diagnosed with COPD you might think that you should try to go as long as possible before you have to start using oxygen.
But the truth is, once your doctor prescribes you oxygen therapy, if done correctly, you should start to see improvements in your mood, energy, and overall quality of life.
As we mentioned in this article, there are still side effects, but having an oxygen device that is designed to be comfortable and easy to use will help with those adjustment periods where you are learning how to manage and avoid certain irritations.
Also always be patient and kind to yourself, allow yourself time to learn about oxygen therapy before you let yourself hate it. If you need help adjusting or think that your oxygen device is not right for you, give us a call at 1-800-946-1201 or reach out over social media and we will gladly mentor the oxygen user on best practices.