Maybe you’re starting to notice that it’s getting more difficult to breathe or your other chronic lung disease symptoms are getting worse—whichever you’re feeling, you know it’s time to see your doctor. In preparing for your appointment you may have done some research on oxygen therapy already and still have a few questions left. Read on for answers to frequently asked questions about oxygen therapy.
Does oxygen burn?
While oxygen itself does not explode or burn, the presence of oxygen will cause things to burn faster. When you receive your oxygen therapy equipment the Service Technician will tell you and your family members how to safely use oxygen1.
How long should I use oxygen each day?
Your doctor’s prescription will tell you how long oxygen should be used each day. It’s common to be prescribed continuous use, too. To gain long-term benefits from using oxygen, studies show that it should be used at least 16 hours a day. Some of the best times to use oxygen are while sleeping, when you’re active and before, during and after meals1.
Is oxygen therapy addictive?
Everyone needs a constant supply of oxygen in order to live, so you can’t become addicted to oxygen. Your supplemental oxygen allows for enough oxygen in your bloodstream to keep your tissues and organs healthy2.
Do I have to stay home if I’m on supplemental oxygen?
You can work with your doctor and home oxygen provider to determine which oxygen equipment best fits your needs. Once you have the right equipment, you can get back to doing the things you love and improve your quality of life2.
Are there side effects?
If your oxygen is set to four liters per minute or more, you may experience dryness and bleeding in the lining of your nose. To help treat this, a small humidifier can be attached to your oxygen therapy equipment. If you experience increased sleepiness, confusion or headaches you should consult your doctor because you may be getting too much oxygen2.