KOAA News in Southern Colorado publishes a feature called “Your Healthy Family”, in which they regularly highlight different therapies and ways to keep you and your family at optimal health. In today’s issue of “Your Healthy Family”, they dive into the phenomenon of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy regarding the how and why it works.
Dr. Kurt Perkins, DC, CCWP, CFMP is a functional medicine doctor in Colorado Springs who says of oxygen, “It’s the most essential thing. You can go weeks or days without food and a few days without water, but when you talk about oxygen just hold your breath and how long can you last?
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy, also known as H-bot, doesn’t help you breathe better – but it’s being in the chamber of 100% oxygen that affects the oxygen in your body that is so beneficial.
Dr. Kurt says, “Medically hyperbaric science itself has been around for a long time. They started playing around with it in the 1600’s. It’s progressed and is commonly associated with diving, and curing the bends. Eventually they started realizing there is more to this and we can use it as a therapy.”
When a patient enters into a hyperbaric chamber, the chamber is pressurized to a different atmospheric depth. It is that pressure difference combined with oxygen when magic happens.
Hyperbaric in itself is just a delivery of pressure, but that’s where the physics takes over. When you increase air pressure oxygen dissolves, or any gas for that matter dissolves into a liquid. In this case oxygen dissolves into plasma and now can be escorted throughout the body and it’s not dependent on the red blood cell to escort it there. If someone has an injury or infection, an inflammatory condition – you name it – a lot of times it’s the small blood vessels that are damaged and now the red blood vessels can’t get through to deliver oxygen to then heal the tissue. So we go under pressure (in a hyperbaric chamber) where the oxygen gets dissolved into plasma and the fluid can get past those nooks and crannies and go where it needs to go.
It’s kind of like how ice can decrease inflammation, without using ice or submerging yourself in an ice cold bath.
Dr. Kurt says, “The mechanisms of hyperbaric actually creates basal constriction, so the blood vessel shrinks, decreasing swelling. Essentially, that’s what hyper cold will do, but one therapy is a little more shocking to the system in my opinion, and one’s a little gentler and enjoyable.”
Read more at KOAA NEWS