What should I know about oxygen before using it?

You should understand the proper way to use oxygen and understand the procedures for using it. Be aware that oxygen is flammable. This means that if you are using supplemental oxygen, you must keep your face and oxygen tank away from flames. You cannot smoke while using oxygen, and neither can anyone else in the house. If you are having hyperbaric oxygen therapy, you shouldn't bring anything into the room that can ignite such as battery-powered devices or lighters. Keep oxygen tanks stabilized so they do not fall over.

Too much oxygen can actually be harmful to the lungs and body. Depending on their oxygen levels, people may use supplemental oxygen therapy daily, overnight, continuously or just periodically when their levels are low. Oxygen can be administered through a tube attached to your nose or a tube inserted into your windpipe.

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is given at a hospital. It isn't unusual to feel lightheaded after treatment, but the feeling should go away after a few minutes. There is a risk of some complications when you undergo hyperbaric oxygen therapy, including temporary nearsightedness, organ damage, seizures and middle- and inner-ear injuries.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.