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How to Increase Blood Oxygen Level and Improve Your Health

Do you need to boost your blood oxygen levels? Read on to find out how.
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Adequate blood oxygen saturation is very important to your health and well-being. If you’ve been told you have low blood oxygen saturation, you may have been googling “how to increase blood oxygen level.” You’ll soon realize there are many methods for testing, including professional medical oxygen equipment

More than 20 percent of the oxygen you breathe in goes to your brain. If this vital organ doesn’t get enough oxygen over time, your brain cells start to die. Similarly, if your heart doesn’t get enough oxygen, you are at risk for heart disease. In this article, we’ll discuss the simple and complex options available to you. Before we do that, let’s look at some of the basic information regarding blood oxygen levels. If you’ve been searching for “how to increase blood oxygen level,” keep reading.

What Medical Experts Consider a Normal Blood Oxygen Level

Unlike blood pressure or blood sugar, few people think about blood oxygen saturation or whether they have a normal blood oxygen level. However, oxygen saturation directly impacts your health and overall quality of life. The normal range for healthy adults and children is between 95 and 100 percent. Any value below 90 percent is considered low. Low blood oxygen levels can cause some uncomfortable or painful symptoms that, without treatment, can lead to cyanosis.

The blood oxygen level chart below outlines the various levels, what they mean, and what type of intervention is necessary.Oxygen Levels

Oxygen LevelsMeaningTreatment Needed
95% or moreNormal for healthy peopleNo need for treatment
88 to 92%Normal for people with chronic obstructive pulmonary diseaseConduct respiratory assessment and monitoring
85 to 94%HypoxicCommence oxygen therapy and assess for underlying respiratory conditions
Below 85%Severely hypoxicStart supplemental oxygen immediately

What Influences Blood Oxygen Level Saturation?

Blood oxygen level saturation is a complex biological process that is affected by multiple factors. Whether the cells and tissues in your body can get enough oxygen depends on whether:

  • There is enough oxygen in the air 
  • Your lungs are capable of inhaling the air and exhaling carbon dioxide
  • Your bloodstream is capable of circulating the blood to your lungs, taking up the oxygen, and transporting it around your body

Blood oxygen level saturation can below if you have not acclimated to living in a high altitude environment. In addition, certain medical conditions can cause low blood oxygen saturation including anemia, asthma, emphysema, congenital heart disease, sleep apnea, and pulmonary fibrosis. If you have any of these conditions, you may want to check your blood oxygen levels regularly.

How Do I Check My Blood Oxygen Level?

Now that you know which blood oxygen levels should be of concern and some of the factors that affect your blood oxygen saturation, let’s look at the best methods to measure your levels. Two of the more popular options are:

  • Arterial Blood Gas (ABG) Test - This checks how much oxygen and carbon dioxide are in the blood. The doctor uses a small needle to draw blood from the wrist, inside of the arm, or groin. The results are usually available within 15 minutes.
  • Pulse Oximeter Test - This is a non-invasive test. A small device is clipped onto your finger and can detect how well oxygen is being carried to your extremities. This test may be used in a clinical setting, but there are also pulse oximeters for at-home use.

What Should I Do If I Have a Low Blood Oxygen Level?

If you have a low blood oxygen level, you may notice several symptoms including:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Rapid breathing
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Headache
  • Restlessness
  • Dizziness
  • Chest pain
  • Confusion
  • Euphoria
  • Visual disorders
  • Lack of coordination

If you take a test or notice these symptoms of a low blood oxygen level, there are several things you can do to improve your condition. You should:

  • Give up smoking. If a doctor has told you that you have COPD or any other lung disease, this is the most important thing to do. 
  • Avoid being around second-hand smoke. Discontinuing smoking is not enough because going places where others smoke can cause further lung damage.
  • Exercise regularly. If you have trouble breathing, you may find it hard to exercise. However, it will improve your strength and endurance. 
  • Eat iron-rich foods like meat, legumes, and green leafy vegetables. These will make you feel more energetic.
  • Grow indoor plants to increase the amount of oxygen in your home.

If you want to do even more to quickly and efficiently improve your blood oxygen level, check out Summit Oxygen’s home and portable oxygen concentrators. If you don’t want to buy the device, we also offer oxygen equipment rental. Contrary to popular belief, oxygen equipment is not just for people who have COPD and other health problems. If you have not yet adjusted to high altitude living or want to improve your wellbeing, our products are for you. Boosting your oxygen levels can even help to increase your sleep recovery. Contact us today to find the right solution for your needs.