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How to Select the Best Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Chamber in the UK

How to Select the Best Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Chamber in the UK

 

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) has a long history of safely treating various conditions, including decompression sickness and pressure wounds. Today, professional athletes are increasingly turning to HBOT for faster recovery from joint pain, muscle and tendon injuries, and even concussions.

 

Home hyperbaric chambers, also known as mild chambers, offer mild hyperbaric oxygen therapy (mHBOT) and are suitable for clinical settings, wellness centres, and home use. With a home hyperbaric chamber, you can enjoy the benefits of therapy at your convenience without leaving your home.

 

**What Is a Home Hyperbaric Chamber?**

Home hyperbaric chambers, delivering mHBOT in the 1.3 – 1.5 pressure range, facilitate the enhanced dissolution and saturation of oxygen into the blood, cerebrospinal fluid, and synovial fluid. This contributes to cell rejuvenation and tissue healing. These chambers come in various designs to suit your needs and lifestyle.

 

**Types of Hyperbaric Chambers:**

Hyperbaric oxygen chambers generally fall into two basic categories: hard-sided and soft-sided. Variations include vertical and horizontal designs, determining how you enter, exit, and position during therapy, as well as mono-place and multi-place chambers, dictating how many people can undergo therapy simultaneously.

 

**Soft Hyperbaric Chamber:**

Soft-sided chambers, also known as mild HBOT, portable hyperbaric chambers, or inflatable hyperbaric chambers, are portable devices sealed with a zipper. They typically deliver 24 percent oxygen and are commonly found in homes. These chambers are highly popular and also favoured by gyms, spas, chiropractors, senior living communities, and wellness centres aiming to enhance their facilities. Owning a hyperbaric chamber can set your business apart from competitors.

 

mHBOT addresses low oxygen levels, reduced blood flow, and inflammation. During treatment, a user’s lungs absorb more oxygen than possible when breathing pure oxygen at normal air pressure, and the additional oxygen circulates through the bloodstream.

 

**Pros:**

– Affordable for home use

– Typically portable and easy to set up

– User-friendly

 

**Cons:**

– Provides lower pressure compared to hard-sided models

 

**Hard Hyperbaric Chamber:**

Hard hyperbaric chambers offer the highest pressures for HBOT. While they can be used at home, their cost can put them out of reach for many individual users. They are often a valuable investment for hospitals. The significant pressure increase within these chambers results in the rapid dissolution of concentrated oxygen molecules into the bloodstream.

 

**Pros:**

– Significantly increases oxygen levels in the blood

– Supports cell rejuvenation and tissue healing

– Provides the highest pressure levels for maximum oxygenation

 

**Cons:**

– Expensive for home use

– Not portable

– Assembly services are optional but highly recommended, adding to the overall cost

 

**Horizontal or Vertical:**

Horizontal Hyperbaric Chamber

In a horizontal mild hyperbaric chamber, users lie flat during treatment with an oxygen mask covering their nose and mouth. Many users find this position comfortable and often report resting, napping, or simply enjoying a relaxing experience during treatment.

 

**Pros:**

– Comfortable supine position

– Accommodates users who prefer lying down during treatment

– Enables relaxation, napping, or rest during sessions

 

**Cons:**

– May be uncomfortable for individuals who dislike tight enclosed spaces

 

Vertical Hyperbaric Chamber

Vertical hyperbaric chambers, suitable for individuals with claustrophobia or those who prefer to remain active during treatment, allow users to receive therapy while seated. Also referred to as upright chambers, these models enable users to read or use small electronic devices during the session.

 

**Pros:**

– Ideal for individuals with claustrophobia

– Accommodates wheelchair users

– Allows for the use of electronic devices for entertainment during sessions

– Offers portability

 

**Cons:**

– Requires users to sit for up to 2 hours

 

**Mono-place or Multi-place:**

Mono-place Hyperbaric Chamber

Mono-place hyperbaric chambers treat one user at a time, with horizontal versions resembling tubes where users lie down for the duration of treatment, and vertical versions allowing users to sit upright. These chambers enable personalized treatment sessions tailored to individual needs.

 

**Pros:**

– Provides an individualized user experience

– Less expensive than multi-place designs

– Portable and available in hard or soft-sided options

 

**Cons:**

– Can only treat one user at a time

– Limited space may feel claustrophobic for some users

 

Multi-place Hyperbaric Chamber

Multi-place hyperbaric chambers can accommodate multiple users simultaneously, making them suitable for individuals requiring assistance or comfort during treatment, such as children or those with cognitive issues that might cause agitation if left alone in an enclosed space for two hours.

 

**Pros:**

– Offers a larger, less claustrophobic environment

– Accommodates a caregiver to assist users

– Allows for cost-effective treatment of multiple users

– Enables necessary medical equipment to be inside the chamber with the user

 

**Cons:**

– Often more expensive than single-user designs

– Typically hard-sided, reducing portability

 

**Best: SOFT Multi-place Grand Dive Pro Hyperbaric Chamber, 46″ by Summit to Sea**

 

**Features to Consider Before Purchasing:**

 

**1. Personal or Professional Use:**

– Mild hyperbaric oxygen therapy (mHBOT) chambers are suitable for home use or professional settings like spas and gyms where clients book multiple regular sessions. HBOT therapy is only permitted in professional settings, including hospitals, doctor’s offices, chiropractors, and senior living communities.

 

**2. Adult, Children, or Both:**

– A chamber that can provide treatment to both adults and children is cost-effective. If children will use the chamber, choose one that can accommodate an adult with them (mono-place) during treatment for their comfort and correct oxygen delivery.

 

**3. Chamber Size (Circumference, Diameter, Length):**

– Measure the chamber’s circumference, diameter, and length to ensure it offers enough room for comfortable and safe treatment. Consider available space in your home to ensure proper fitting.

 

**4. Handicap Accessible:**

– Opt for chambers that are wheelchair-accessible or equipped with roll-in stretchers to accommodate individuals with mobility issues.

 

**ATA (Atmospheres Absolute):**

ATA is a measure of pressure that determines the level of oxygen introduced into the bloodstream. When selecting the best hyperbaric chamber for your needs, considering the ATA level is crucial.

 

**Portability or Stationary:**

Portability is essential for individuals such as athletes who travel with their hyperbaric chambers, healthcare practitioners who provide in-home services, and anyone seeking flexibility in therapy location. For situations where the chamber remains in one place, a stationary model is suitable.

 

**Oxygen Concentrator:**

An oxygen concentrator is a device that extracts air from the surrounding environment, filters out nitrogen, and delivers purified oxygen to the user through an oxygen mask.

 

**Number of Users:**

If you anticipate having more than one user, a multiplace chamber should be considered. Multiplace chambers offer ample space for a caregiver, parent, or co-user to comfortably join the chamber, along with any required medical equipment.

 

**Warranty:**

Given that investing in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber is a significant expense, it’s essential to consider warranty options. A robust warranty ensures that your chamber remains covered and functional for years to come.

 

**Frequently Asked Questions:**

 

**Q: How do I prepare for HBOT?**

– A comprehensive guide on preparing for Hyperbaric Therapy is available. Here are key points to remember:

– **FOOD AND DRINK:** Stay hydrated, avoid alcohol and carbonated drinks. Diabetic individuals should monitor blood sugar levels and have glucose replacements nearby during treatment.

– **MEDICATIONS:** Certain medications, such as some chemotherapies, topical ointments for wounds, and drugs that prevent alcohol intake, should be avoided. Consult with healthcare providers beforehand.

– **SMOKING:** Refrain from using tobacco products and smoking during the treatment period, as they hinder the body’s oxygen transportation and counteract the benefits of hyperbaric therapy.

– **SICKNESS:** Even a mild cold can affect ear clearing, potentially leading to inner ear injuries during hyperbaric treatment.

– **WHAT TO WEAR:** Opt for comfortable, loose clothing as you will spend up to two hours in your home oxygen chamber.

– **EAR PREPARATION:** Ensure your ears are free of excessive wax before treatment. Avoid hyperbaric treatment if you’ve recently undergone ear surgery, have an ear infection, jaw surgery, water in your ear, a sinus infection, allergies, or a recent cold. Practice ear clearing techniques before treatment, such as intentional yawning, sipping water, swallowing, or pinching your nose and gently blowing.

– **PREVENTING ANXIETY AND PARANOIA:** With a home unit, you can acclimate to the chamber gradually before treatment. If you experience claustrophobia, you can sit in the chamber with the door open to become accustomed to it.

– **PLANNING THE DAY:** Allocate up to two hours for your treatment and anticipate mild fatigue and possible light-headedness immediately afterward.

– **HAVING A FRIEND NEARBY:** For home hyperbaric oxygen chambers requiring assistance, ensure someone is available to help you enter and exit the chamber.

 

**Q: What is a mild hyperbaric chamber?**

– Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (mHBOT) involves using oxygen in a pressurized environment at levels higher than 1 atmosphere absolute (ATA). This increased pressure enhances the dissolution and saturation of oxygen in the bloodstream, cerebrospinal fluid, synovial fluid, and bodily liquids.

 

**Q: What is HBOT?**

– Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) entails breathing pure oxygen in an environment pressurized at two to three times normal air pressure. This enables the lungs to absorb significantly more oxygen than breathing pure oxygen at standard air pressure.

 

**Q: What is ATA?**

– ATA is a unit of pressure measurement. One atmosphere absolute, or 1 ATA, represents the average atmospheric pressure at sea level. Two ATA is double the atmospheric pressure at sea level. Mild Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy chambers can be pressurized between 1.3 – 1.7 ATA, while hospital-grade multiplace chambers can reach up to 6.0 ATA.

 

**Q: Why do celebrities use hyperbaric chambers?**

– Celebrities often utilize hyperbaric oxygen therapy for its anti-aging and energizing properties, helping them maintain their appearance and meet the demands of their busy lifestyles and careers.

 

**Q: What is a hyperbaric chamber good for?**

– Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is effective for treating decompression sickness, severe infections, air bubbles in blood vessels, and slow-healing wounds.

 

**Q: How much does a home hyperbaric chamber cost?**

– Home hyperbaric oxygen chambers can range in price from £5,000 to £20,000.

 

**Final Thoughts:**

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy infuses oxygen into the bloodstream, aiding in infection control, stimulating cell rejuvenation, and promoting healing. This therapy is applicable to a wide range of conditions and continues to be explored for its impact on inflammatory and systemic issues, COVID-19, and cancer.

 

Choosing the right hyperbaric chamber depends on your intended use, portability needs, and user requirements. Consider these factors to find the perfect hyperbaric chamber for your needs.

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