How an Oxygen Concentrator Can Help With Covid-19?
The statistics from surveys are undeniable proof that Covid-19 is riding high on the trends. Low oxygen levels harmonize with the fatal disease. If it could be stated more accurately, it’d be that low oxygen levels are the root cause of the fatality of Covid-19. With an identified problem, oxygen concentrators are the need of the day.
What are Oxygen Concentrators?
Oxygen concentrators, as the name depicts, are medical devices that are used to treat breathing-related disorders such as Asthma, COPD, and more by delivering concentrated oxygen to the patient. This machine takes air from the surrounding, separates oxygen from the air delivers it to the patient after concentrating it through a pipe connected to a mask or nasal cannula. Patients whose blood oxygen levels drop, they often require concentrated oxygen.
What Makes Oxygen Concentrators a Good Fit for Covid-19 Patients?
Covid-19 causes severe inflammation in the lungs by damaging the cells and tissues that line the air sacs in your lungs, eventually slowing down the delivery of oxygen to the blood. Not breathing enough oxygen can disturb the natural activity of your body. Low oxygen levels hinder the brain, lungs, and heart from doing justice to their job. A condition arising due to low levels of oxygen is termed Hypoxia. In hypoxia, blood lacks enough oxygen. Thus, it’s unable to transfer enough oxygen to cells and tissues. This can introduce the patient’s body to many serious and life-threatening complications.
Oxygen concentrators become a part of the play here. These medical devices make it easy for Covid-19 patients to breathe insufficient levels of oxygen because of a concentrated supply of oxygen. Concentrated oxygen supplies make oxygen concentrators a top of the bunch choice for Covid-19 patients.
Signs of Low Oxygen Levels and How to Check it at Home:
Oxygen concentrators are manufactured to meet low oxygen levels. But, how come do you know about the decreasing oxygen levels of your body?
In order to see how much oxygen your blood is carrying, you can use a small device usually attached to the finger tip with a small clip called Pulse Oximeter. It’s a convenient way to know your oxygen levels without using a needle to extract blood for testing.
A few signs of low oxygen levels:
- Shortness of breath
- Increased rate of heartbeat
- Rapid breathing
- Vigorous coughing
- Periods of pain in the chest
How Do Oxygen Concentrators Work to Make It Better for Covid-19 Patients?
The mechanism of oxygen concentrators is really simple. The device pulls in air from its surroundings and passes it through a compressor. Then the nitrogen is removed from the air and it’s only left with pure oxygen. This oxygen is then made available to Covid-19 patients to breathe from, thus easing out the process for them.
Types Of Oxygen Concentrators:
There are 2 basic types of oxygen concentrators
- Portable Oxygen Concentrator
- Stationary Oxygen Concentrator
Portable Oxygen Concentrator:
The greatest advantage associated with portable oxygen concentrators is their mobility. They can easily be moved around from place to place. They can be charged and carried along with external extra batteries for long trips and traveling.
Stationary Oxygen Concentrators:
Stationary or home units are a favorable choice to go for if continuous and abundant oxygen flow is required for the patient. To be on the safe side, stationary units are arranged for Covid-19 patients as they can provide uninterrupted oxygen flow and require little maintenance. You just need to plug the switch and wait for 1-2 minutes for the machine to start producing pure oxygen.
Which Oxygen Concentrator Would Be Counted as a Better Choice for Covid-19 Patients?
If we had to go with one of the two choices i.e., portable oxygen concentrator or a stationary one, the latter would be a preferable choice when dealing with Covid-19 patients as it can provide an uninterrupted flow of pure oxygen 24/7.
Precautions to Take When Using Oxygen Concentrators:
Not sticking to a few precautionary measures can result in doing worse than good. It’s better to be careful with oxygen concentrators. We are giving you a checklist of a few necessary precautionary measures:
- Prefer placing the concentrator in an open space to minimize the chances of device failure and avoid overheating.
- Restrain from using oxygen concentrators near any kind of fire, flammable materials or while smoking.
- Avoid blocking any vents on the device. This can result in impacting device performance.
- Consider periodically checking your device for any alarms. By doing this you make sure you are getting continuous pure oxygen.
- Oxygen concentrators are a good choice for patients with an oxygen concentration level ranging between 90% to 93%. In case of crucial cases or oxygen levels below 90%, seek hospital care.
By taking the necessary precautions, the Covid-19 patients are said to benefit more. This way they are exposed to a full-scale advantage of the oxygen concentrators.
Things To Keep in Mind While Buying an Oxygen Concentrator for Covid-19 Patients:
There are certain things you need to see before buying an oxygen concentrator. This can help you out in the long
1. Cross-Check the Capacity of Oxygen Concentrator
In oxygen concentrators, we have options ranging from 1 LPM to 10 LPM (liters per minute). Follow your doctor’s advice on which to buy from the range. Generally, the experts state that an oxygen concentrator with 90% oxygen concentration and a 5L capacity does really well for a small family with no elderly people.
2. Check Oxygen Purity Indicator of Oxygen Concentrators
Don’t forget to check for the oxygen purity indicator of oxygen concentrators. It is an indication of the purity of oxygen the device is letting out. According to expert opinion, it shouldn’t be less than 87%.
Can Covid-19 Patients Completely Rely on Oxygen Concentrators?
Though oxygen concentrators can bridge the gap between hospitalization and suffering, but cannot be taken as a permanent solution to the problem. This is because there are many other complications involved in Covid-19 apart from low oxygen levels and patients also require medication along with purified oxygen supply.
Oxygen concentrators are a great addition to lessen the miseries of the patients suffering from Covid-19. They provide an ample flow of oxygen. But on the same ground, we can’t deny that they can never be perceived as complete solutions for the pandemic. Oxygen concentrators can be taken more as precautionary measures to get away from a serious health condition.