If your physician has recently prescribed oxygen therapy, you’re probably wondering how to choose the best portable oxygen concentrator for your needs. These powerful machines can deliver reliable oxygen, without the need for bulky tanks. They’re also lightweight and easy to operate. For these reasons, portable concentrators are becoming more popular!
For patients with conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or cystic fibrosis (CF), supplemental oxygen is essential for maintaining quality of life. With the right portable oxygen concentrator, you can enjoy your freedom and independence, staying active and engaged with life! There are many choices for brands and styles of portable oxygen concentrators (POCs) online, so how can you find the best one for you?
Here are some questions to ask yourself, and your doctor, to narrow down the choices:
1. How much oxygen do I need each day?
Your POC will have a certain oxygen output, often in liters/minute or milliliters/minute. Your doctor should tell you how much oxygen you’ll need.
2. Do I need continuous flow or pulse flow?
Continuous flow POCs provide a steady stream of oxygen, whereas pulse-dose POCs can detect your breathing and only deliver oxygen on your inhales. Most patients go with pulse-flow, and some machines can actually switch back and forth to offer both.
3. How long can I be out and about with my POC?
If you are active, traveling, or working while using your POC, you’ll need one that is lighter to carry and has a longer battery life. Additional battery packs or car adapters are often available.
4. Do I need oxygen while I am sleeping?
If your doctor has prescribed oxygen therapy for you while you sleep, you may want a stationary unit with larger output. However, many continuous flow portable oxygen concentrators can be used by your bedside while sleeping.
5. How much weight can I comfortably carry?
While most POCs are lightweight (under 6 pounds), depending on your state of health, you may need an ultra-lightweight model. For those with injuries, muscle weakness, or conditions like scoliosis, look for models that are less than 3 pounds. Or, check out alternative carrying options, like backpacks, hip bags, or rolling carts.
Shopping for the best portable oxygen concentrator for your needs? We’re here to help you make the experience as hassle-free as possible. Reach out to us at Portable Oxygen Solutions today to get started!