Oxygen therapy is a form of treatment that delivers oxygen to the body when it's needed. There are different methods of oxygen therapy, including transferring the oxygen via a tube through your nostrils, using a facemask that allows you to inhale it into your nose and mouth, or having an incision made in your trachea in order to attach a tube there to bring the oxygen into the body directly.

Signs You Could Need Asthma Oxygen Therapy

When you have asthma and have low levels of oxygen, some of the symptoms include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Severe tiredness
  • Sleep disturbances caused by breathing challenges

Measuring Your Oxygen Level

If your doctor suspects your oxygen level is low, he may do some diagnostic testing to determine the extent of the problem. This can include an arterial blood gas test, which uses a needle to draw blood through an artery to measure the oxygen level it contains, and a pulse oximetry test, which uses a special light to check the oxygen level.

Are You a Good Candidate for Oxygen Therapy?

When you do need asthma oxygen therapy, keep in mind that not everyone will need the same level of treatment. In fact, researchers have discovered that the appropriate concentration of the oxygen treatment should be determined on an individual basis, since some asthmatics will find that 100 percent oxygen actually makes their symptoms worse instead of better. Therefore, it's essential to work closely with your doctor to get the best form of oxygen therapy for your specific health concerns and situation.

Be Prepared

Some asthmatics receive oxygen therapy in the hospital or in another controlled medical setting, while others can treat themselves with this method at home. If you need regular oxygen treatments, you may benefit from a portable oxygen unit that will be easy to take with you wherever you go. Some people only need oxygen during specific times, such as when engaging in activity or while sleeping, but others may need to rely on a portable oxygen unit all or most of the time.  A trained health care aid can work with you to help you use oxygen therapy properly in order to get the full benefits.




National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.  "What Is Oxygen Therapy?" 24 Feb. 2011.

National Jewish Health. Oxygen Therapy, June 2009. Web. 8 April 2012.

NursingTimes.Net. "Emergency oxygen delivery: patients with asthma and COPD." 24 March 2009. Web. 8 April 2012.