Running yourself ragged with work carries risks, but these are more pronounced under the threat of Covid 19. With close to seven million cases diagnosed at the time of writing, being able to identify, monitor, and treat patients becomes vital for healthcare providers from all backgrounds – with blood oxygen rapidly being identified as a high risk factor.
So, what exactly is your blood oxygen level and why is it so important for physicians throughout the world?
What is your blood oxygen level?
Put simply, it’s the level of oxygen that you currently have in your bloodstream.
A vital part of cellular and personal health, oxygen is acquired through respiration and passes into your body’s bloodstream through the alveoli within your lungs. Once absorbed, oxygen is absorbed into red blood cells and carried throughout the body. A vital part of cellular combustion, the presence of oxygen allows the body to release the energy required from food and support the daily tasks our physiology is required to accomplish.
However, drop offs in your blood o2 levels can be significantly harmful if not addressed immediately.
Why is this so important?
One of the major complicating factors posed by Covid 19 is the threat of viral pneumonia.
If contracted, this causes your lungs to inflame and have difficulty contracting or expanding, reducing the level of oxygen that can enter your bloodstream and causing water to pool in your parenchyma. This reduction in 02 has a knock on effect throughout your body, dropping your energy levels and creating a destructive cycle that prevents healing, which can cause the patient’s condition to worsen.
For a healthy adult, this can be highly dangerous. But for those with weakened immune systems, the risks can be high. The elderly, infirm, and those with pre-existing conditions can be at extreme risk from infection – greatly increasing their recovery time and the severity of their condition.
This makes sensor technology that can spot reduced o2 levels vital for treating the condition and providing ongoing care for individuals or those that require assistance. And investing in these companies not only helps provide additional support to internal research teams, but can prove to be an ethical, sound investment in the years ahead.
How is it monitored?
Fortunately, advances in technology have made capturing information about your blood oxygen easier than before. Companies such as Sensoronics provide devices known as pulse oximeters. These clip onto your finger and are non-invasively allow for the monitoring of haemoglobin saturation int the blood – the element that carries oxygen throughout the body.
Using a portable oximeter allows you to check your own levels and play a useful role in treating other potentially life threatening diseases such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and other vascular issues. And the more these professionals continue to help supply materials, the more private individuals are able to gather the information needed to deal with issues now and tackle epidemics in the future.