Supplemental oxygen is provided to you through the use of an oxygen concentrator. An oxygen concentrator is a machine that separates room air into oxygen and nitrogen. The nitrogen is discarded while the oxygen is stored, concentrated and delivered at 90% - 95% purity. An oxygen concentrator does not reduce the oxygen in the room air because of the small amount of oxygen required.
An Oxygen Concentrator can be easily rolled from room to room if needed. Your oxygen concentrator will perform best when it's located in a well-ventilated area at least 3 (three) inches away from walls, furniture, and curtains.
Most oxygen concentrator's are equipped with an audible alarm to alert you in case of an interruption in power or a possible equipment malfunction.
If the alarm goes off follow these simple instructions:
-Check to see that the power cord is still connected to the electrical wall outlet.
-Check to see if the outlet is connected to a wall switch and that it wasn't inadvertently turned off.
-Quickly assess other electrical appliances in the home to determine if there is a power failure, or if a fuse or circuit breaker has blown.
If there is an interruption in the electrical power or a possible equipment malfunction, simply turn OFF the concentrator to stop the alarm and turn ON your back-up cylinder system and connect your cannula tubing to the oxygen outlet. If your electrical service does not return within a reasonable length of time, notify your oxygen provider so that additional oxygen cylinders can be delivered
If you find it necessary to use your back-up cylinder system during several intermittent short-term power failures, it is important to check the pressure gauge to ensure that you have an adequate supply of back-up oxygen. Please follow the instructions provided for your back-up system to determine the amount of oxygen you have left.
If you experience a disruption in the flow of oxygen coming from your nasal cannula or mask, please check the following prior to calling your oxygen provider.
- Remove your cannula and place the nasal prongs in a glass of water, or disconnect the mask and place the tubing in a glass of water. If you see bubbles, oxygen is flowing.
- Check that the tubing is connected to the concentrator.
- Check that the tubing is connected to the mask or nasal cannula.
- Check that the liter flow is turned up to the prescribed amount.
- Check the oxygen tubing for an obstruction, replace if needed.
- Check that the lid on the humidifier bottle is on correctly.
Follow these rules to prevent a fire in your home:
Visitors as well as family members should smoke outdoors.
Put a NO SMOKING sign in a prominent place at the entrance to your home.
Avoid open flames such as a fireplace or wood burning stove. When using oxygen, stay at least 5 feet from any open flame.
When cooking, secure your cannula over your ears and behind your head, instead of under your chin. Consider securing your tubing to your clothes either behind you or on your side. Do not bend down close to the burners.
Do not use any oily substances (petroleum based lip products, Vaseline, Blistex, Chapstick) on your nose, lips, or lower part of your face. An alternative is water-based products such as KY Jelly.
Keep all grease, oil and petroleum products (even small amounts) and flammable materials away from your oxygen equipment. These materials can react violently with oxygen if ignited and cause a hot spark.
Smoke Alarms and Fire Extinguishers
Have a working smoke detector on each level of your home. Ideally, smoke detectors should be placed in common areas of your home and outside of bedrooms. Many local fire departments have established smoke alarm programs to assist the community in obtaining home smoke alarms.
Smoke detectors should be tested on a regular basis and batteries should be changed every six months.
Have a working fire extinguisher. A fire extinguisher can be purchased at most home improvement or department stores.
Using Electrical Equipment
Do not use equipment with frayed cords or exposed wires. They could cause a spark.
Avoid using electric razors and hair dryers while using oxygen. Battery operated razors and hair dryers if they have less than 10 volts can be used.
Do not use extension cords with oxygen equipment. Your concentrator may cause the cord to overheat and cause a fire.
Do not use an appliance with a control box, such as a heating pad or electric blanket. Control boxes may throw sparks.
Do not plug oxygen into an outlet controlled by a light switch.
Avoid Static Electricity
Avoid nylon or woolen clothing because it may cause static electricity. Clothing and bed linen made of cotton materials will avoid sparks from static electricity.
Use a humidifier in winter to add moisture to dry air in your home.
Storage and Handling of Oxygen Cylinders & Concentrators
Keep oxygen cylinders/concentrators in a well-ventilated area (not in closets, behind curtains, or other confined spaces).
Keep the oxygen at least 6 feet from any fireplace, stove or electric appliance such as a hairdryer, electric toothbrush or razor, electric blanket, electric toy, space heater or electric baseboard heater.
Keep the oxygen as far away as possible from an oven or stove while cooking, and be very wary of grease splatters.
Keep the oxygen away from any flammable liquid.
Oxygen cylinders must remain upright at all times. Never tip an oxygen cylinder on its side or try to roll it to a new location.
Do not transport oxygen tanks in the trunk of a car. Oxygen tanks need to be transported properly secured to reduce movement.
Always have a full back up tank available in case of emergencies, such as a need to leave your home or a power failure.
Care and Cleaning
Clean at least once a week. The outside of your concentrator can be wiped down with a damp cloth and a mild dish detergent. Never spray the cleaner directly onto the machine.
Your oxygen concentrator may have exterior filters that need to be cleaned at least once a week. They can be easily removed and placed under warm running water. Excess water should be rung out and the filters should be left to air dry.
Clean daily with mild dish detergent and rinse.
Replace every 2 (two) weeks.
Empty as needed.
Remove at lease twice a week and clean with mild dish detergent and rinse.
Use only distilled or sterile water.
Empty daily and replace with new distilled or sterile water.
Clean and disinfect at least twice a week. First wash with mild dish detergent and rinse well; them soak in 1 part water and 1 part distilled white vinegar. Rinse thoroughly and allow to air dry.