Where to get oxygen?

Are you feeling short of breath or gasping for air? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Sometimes the air we breathe just isn’t enough. Whether it’s due to pollution or exertion, our lungs need more oxygen than what they get from normal breathing processes. That’s where supplemental oxygen comes in handy.

But wait! Before you start raiding your grandma’s medicine cabinet (if that thought even crossed your mind), let me tell you about safe and legal ways to get extra oxygen.

What is Oxygen Therapy?

Oxygen therapy is a medical treatment used to supplement the amount of oxygen in our blood when there are difficulties getting adequate amounts through normal breathing. The goal of oxygen therapy is to relieve symptoms related to low levels of oxygen such as shortness of breath or fatigue while improving overall quality of life.

There are various types and sources of supplemental oxygen one can utilize depending on their specific needs and preferences:

Portable Oxygen Concentrators

Portable Oxygen Concentrator (POC) devices filter room air by removing nitrogen an other gases leaving only approximately 90-95% pure enriched-oxygen via a nasal cannula directly into the patients lungs(No magic involved here folks! Just good old technology at work). There are several brands available with different features like continuous flow vs pulse dose delivery, battery power capabilities among others (we will give all these fancy terminologies below so buckle up folks).

  • Continuous Flow vs Pulse Dose Delivery
    • Continuous flow POCs provide constant doses (liters per minute) throughout usage whereas pulse dose deliver pulses after sensing inhalation.

To list a few popular models:

Brand Model Name Inogenital Number
Inogen One G4 404
Activox Pro 4 666
OxyGo Next Gen 2021
Invacare XPO2 100

Compressed Gas Oxygen

Compressed gas tanks store oxygen in a condensed form under high pressure. These are mostly used by those who need large amounts of continuous oxygen flow(if you’re into carrying around small tank size backpacks, then this is your niche). There are two main types of compressed gases:

  • Compressed Oxygen: Pure 99%+ Oxygen.
  • Liquid Oxygen: Chilled and liquefied down to save space.

Concentrators (Stationary)

Unlike Portable concentrators which use ambient air as the source, Stationary concentrator draw in untreated room air [using normal electricity] via its compressor where it employs filtration stages to remove gaseous components present therein thereby improving nitrogen’s concentration purity from either stable molecular zeolite or Pressure Swing Adsorption technology (Science Rules!).

Where Can You Get Supplemental Oxygen?

Now that we’ve gone through the different options available for supplemental oxygen therapy let us explore some readily accessible methods to acquire them.

Your Doctor’s Office

Your doctor can prescribe supplemental oxygen if it has been determined that you have low levels of blood oxygen saturation during bouts of exercise called hypoxia (NO SELF MEDICATION PEEPS!! Healthy living starts with routine medical checkups). They’ll determine what type of equipment is most appropriate for you based on your needs and situation. A pulmonary function test (PFT) will also be done so they know how much extra air you’d require(If ever wondered why they had those breathing exercises in gym class wonder no more folks)!

Home Medical Equipment Providers

There exist a vast variety online retailers(Nooo this isn’t an ad) who feature portable O2 supplies advertised by their features, battery life/weight ratio coungerbable with the main distributors such as Linde Healthcare, Inogen and Phillips Respironics.(Don’t say I didn’t give you options!)

Hospital Supply Stores

Hospital supply stores can offer short-term oxygen rentals if you only require supplemental oxygen for a limited period of time. These also work great when travelling over long distances are not guaranteed. The advantage with hospital supply stores is that they have varied maintained equipments available.

Oxygen Bar

If it’s an energy boost rather than medical help you’re looking to receive alongside relaxation techniques then just put on a stylish pair of earphones combined with aromatherapy and prepare to be blown away (Pun intended :wink:) Do ensure that an experienced specialist is present dole out air dosages(Please mention again: No Self Medications Peeps!)