How to use an oxygen concentrator at home? | By Avinash Gupta
The oxygen concentrator is a device that fetches oxygen from the air, giving you the necessary oxygen that you need. Some doctors might recommend you some oxygen supplements in case if you have a breathing problem, like asthma, COPD, cystic fibrosis, pneumonia, sleep apnea, or lung diseases. You need to set up the device properly before beginning to use it.
Follow the following mentioned steps as suggested by Avinash Gupta in order to set up your oxygen concentrator machine at home:
Part 1: Setting up the device
Position oxygen concentrator at least 1-2 feet away from your furniture and wall. This is because the device needs to fetch/pull or exhaust energy; therefore, you need to give it a space to perform its mechanism properly. One more thing that you need to ensure is, the area around the machines should be unobstructed.
Moreover, other than giving it a space to circulate air, your machine will become hot in this process, so there could also be a fire risk if you position your oxygen concentrator near curtains or furniture.
2. Connect your prescribed humidification bottle
Now, it’s time to position a threaded cap on a humidification bottle that you chose to fix into the oxygen concentrator. Twist your bottle carefully until it gets attached to your concentrator device.
Your outlet’s location might vary according to the model you use; therefore, you need to check the manual that already came along with your machine. Mostly, your outlet is available on one of the sides of the machine near its dials.
Make sure to use filtered or distilled water for your humidification bottle. Remove the cap from its top, now start filling it with the water. Now, cover it with a cap again before you attach your bottle with your oxygen concentrator device. You need to make sure that you change the water whenever you use the device, every time.
You will have to prescribe the humidification bottle if your doctor asks you to have an oxygen flow between 2-3 (or greater) liters every minute.
3. Now, it’s time to attach the oxygen tubing with an adapter or either humidification bottle you have.
You will see a kind of port if you are using a humidification bottle with your oxygen concentrator, and here is the point where you need to insert your tubing. On the other hand, if you are not using a humidification bottle, you will find one oxygen adaptor known as "Christmas Tree Adaptor" to get attached to your tubes. This will look quite similar to a small funnel that has a single point end and a large end.
4. Ensure the position of your air filter
An air filter is an attached device with your oxygen concentrator that removes allergens and particles from the air. Make sure that you locate it on the side of your device. Moreover, you may also remove or change the filter over time, but always make sure that whenever you turn it on, your machine filter is there.
Part 2: Turning On
1. Turn on your oxygen concentrator device.
Always make sure to turn on your device before 15-20 minutes of using it. This is because the device needs to take some time to concentrate the air properly before you can use it. Therefore, you need to turn it on before you begin breathing in it.
2. Plug the machine’s switch into any grounded outlet
Make sure the outlet you will use to plug in an oxygen concentrator; there should not be any other device connected because it can draw much higher power. On the other hand, if the outlet you use is not grounded, then it's good to use an adaptor.
3. Switch your power button to “ON” status
The switch available of your oxygen concentrator is labeled as on/off, or it could also be labeled with "Start." Once you move the button to the active position, the lights will turn on, and some noise will be generated as the machine starts pulling in air and releasing it.
Your oxygen concentrator sounds an alarm for few seconds when you turn it on suggests Avinash Gupta. This is something that makes sure that your machine is not accidentally on. The alarm will be silent after few seconds.
Part 3: Adjusting the flow rate of your oxygen concentrator
1. Position the control knob
How your knob looks might vary, but you need to ensure that it must be a main switch or knob of the machine. It will also mark for LPM, Liters Per Minute, or could be in the form of level too like 1,3,4, etc. Also, the knobs will have numbers on them, depending upon the model you have.
2. Turn your device’s knob until it gets to the prescribed number
Your doctor must have prescribed you a specific number or level of oxygen you need to take on a daily basis. Setting up the knob according to the prescribed level will help you out rather than taking any random amount on your own.
3. Use the exact prescribed amount of oxygen.
It could be very harmful if you take the estimated amount of oxygen without consulting with your doctor. Therefore, always take your doctor’s advice on it and make the oxygen level setting according to the prescribed instructions given by your doctor.
Part 4: Put your nasal cannula or mask
1. Check tubing for bends or kinks
This is something that can interrupt the oxygen’s flow, so make them smooth if you see any bends. Kink can stop or disturb the flow of oxygen you need; therefore, you might need to replace tubing if it cannot get straighten.
2. Put the mask over the face to get a low level of oxygen
This step will make sure that there is no gap in the edges of your mask. Put the elastic attachments around your ear or over your head, according to the mask’s style you have.
3. Fit the nasal cannula into nostrils to get a higher amount of oxygen
Every prong of your nasal cannula should be curved up properly into your nostril. Once it is done, now loop your tubes over the ears. Make the adjustments properly to fit it on your chin.
4. Strat breathing under the mask
Take the normal breaths through your mask, making your concentrator supplement oxygen. Use it for a time as prescribed by your doctor. And then, turn your machine off if you are not using it anymore.
By: Avinash Gupta Oxygen Concentrator Website