Finding the Right Portable Oxygen Concentrator For You
Oxygen concentrators are portable devices used for oxygen therapy — typically for people who suffer from hypoxia, a condition in which they experience low blood oxygen levels. Common conditions that can contribute to hypoxia include anemia, heart failure, congenital heart disease, asthma, and COPD.
Oxygen concentrators alleviate this issue by pulling in air from the surrounding area, purifying and compressing it, and then delivering oxygen-rich air back to the user. The portable nature of oxygen concentrators ensures that users can take them on the go so that they have enough oxygen for their daily activities.
Oxygen concentrators have several distinct benefits over oxygen tanks, but with so many to choose from, it can be hard to decide which would be the best fit for you. Fortunately, a recent ranking from Forbes helps to highlight some of the best oxygen concentrators currently available.
Why Use an Oxygen Concentrator Instead of an Oxygen Tank?
An oxygen concentrator is far more versatile than using oxygen tanks, making it far easier to continue engaging in your normal activities. Oxygen tanks contain a limited amount of oxygen. Eventually, the tank will run out and will need to be replaced or refilled. You don’t want to be out and about and have the tank run out!
This stands in direct contrast to oxygen concentrators, which continuously draw air from the surrounding environment. As long as the concentrator itself has power (either though a battery or by being plugged in to the wall), it will be able to provide the oxygen-rich air you need.
This also makes oxygen concentrators much more portable than an oxygen tank. Portable models often weigh less than five pounds, making them easy to take with you as you go out and about. Oxygen tanks, on the other hand, are extremely bulky and heavy. Even moving the tank from one room to another when inside your own home can be a challenge.
Forbes’ Best Oxygen Concentrators
So which oxygen concentrator is right for you? The recent rankings published by Forbes looked at a variety of important factors that affect product usability, including price, weight, battery life, wearability, warranty, and range of oxygen settings.
With that in mind, Forbes’ top-ranked oxygen concentrator was the EasyPulse Portable Oxygen Concentrator (in the 3 liter size). Other top-ranked products included the Drive Medical DeVilbiss iGO2 Portable Oxygen Concentrator, the Philips Respironics SimplyGo Mini, and the Invacare Platinum Mobile Oxygen Concentrator.
What helped these products stand apart from the rest? For the iGO2, the Forbes research cited its light weight, quiet use, and automatic adjusting of oxygen settings with five pulse dose settings. The SimplyGo Mini’s LCD touchscreen and sleek design make it an easy-to-use option while on the go. The Invacare Platinum features top-loaded batteries for easy changes without interrupting the supply of oxygen.
For each of these oxygen concentrators, durability and good battery life were key considerations. Many can get up to five hours of use from a single battery, making them easy to incorporate into your daily outings. With high marks from professional reviewers, you can use these devices with confidence.
Making the Most of Your Oxygen Concentrator
While you can take your oxygen concentrator just about anywhere you go, some key best practices will help you make the most of this medical device. Before going out, make sure you have a fully charged battery. It never hurts to bring a spare battery along. Some models also allow you to charge the device inside the car.
You should also ensure that your nasal cannula or mask are properly attached to the device’s nozzle, and that the particle filter is properly attached. Oxygen concentrators should always be used in a well-ventilated area so that the intake and exhaust ports have enough clearance. You can place them in a carrying bag, but you must ensure that the bag offers enough ventilation.
When turning on the oxygen concentrator, make sure to set it to your prescribed flow rate. Wait for it to “warm up” and reach the right oxygen concentration level before you put on your nasal cannula or mask.
When you return home from an outing, it is best to plug your device into a wall outlet for power. Recharge the batteries so they will be ready for your next trip outside the house.
Regardless of the oxygen concentrator model you ultimately choose to purchase, the straightforward use will make it easy to incorporate into your daily routine. As you are mindful of your device’s power needs, you can ensure that you’ll have the concentrated oxygen you need, even when going out for longer outings.
Get Quality Equipment From Help Medical Supplies
While an oxygen concentrator is a major investment, it can make a significant difference for your quality of life. However, many without adequate health insurance coverage may feel that purchasing an oxygen concentrator is out of reach — but not with Help Medical Supplies on your side.
At Help Medical Supplies, we carry a broad range of oxygen concentrators from several of the best brands in the industry, including Drive Medical/DeVilbiss Healthcare, Inogen, Philips Respironics, Oxlife, and more. Many of these products are available at significant discounts off of MSRP, allowing you to save hundreds on your purchase. With free shipping on orders of $89 or more and available financing on orders of $500 or more, your purchase can be even more affordable.
With a quality oxygen concentrator, you can mitigate your health concerns and continue to enjoy the activities you love.