Living Well With COPD - Page 24

LIVING WELL WITH COPD Using Oxygen Over time, some people with COPD need to use supplemental oxygen. This: • • • • • Can make your breathing easier Enhances your quality of life • Compressed gas oxygen, which comes in steel or aluminum containers in different sizes for home use and traveling. • Liquid oxygen, which changes liquid into a breathable gas. (not readily available) • Oxygen concentrators, electrical devices that remove nitrogen from the air, concentrating the oxygen. May help you live longer Oxygen should be used 24 hours a day at rest Oxygen can also be used with physical activities and/or during sleep Oxygen is not addictive. Increased use won’t make you need it more. However, it is considered a medication. Not all patients with COPD will need or benefit from oxygen. For people with COPD who don’t get enough oxygen naturally, oxygen therapy can: • Improve sleep, mood, and mental alertness • Better allow the body to conduct its everyday functions • Improve survival Traveling With Oxygen Air travel has restrictions related to oxygen. You cannot travel on an airplane with an oxygen canister. You must use either an airline- supplied oxygen canister or an FAA-certified portable oxygen concentrator. Other requirements may apply. Check with your airline and/ or oxygen supplier at least 2 weeks before you travel. 22 There are three types of oxygen: If your doctor prescribes oxygen, ask about: • The oxygen flow rate or setting, so you receive the right amount of oxygen per minute of use • When you should wear your oxygen, such as: • - - - - - - During activities While sleeping Continuously Which type of oxygen equipment best suits your lifestyle You should NEVER SMOKE when you are getting oxygen therapy. There is increased fire hazard. You may harm yourself or your surroundings.