COVID-19 Who's at higher risk

COVID-19: Who’s at higher risk

COVID19 and people who are at higher risk are from all walks of life, but some may have greater chances of catching it or are often more severe. Including those over age 60 and people with heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes. A lot depends on the kind of work you do, the conditions you live in, and whether you have other health problems.

Older Adults 

The risk of developing dangerous symptoms increases with age, with those who are age 85 and older at the highest risk of serious symptoms. An estimated 6% to 29% of people 85 and older who get COVID-19 will require intensive care. Here are some reasons why:

  • As you age, changes to your lung tissue can make it harder to heal from COVID-19.
  • Older adults are more likely to have long-term health problems that can put them at risk.
  • Your immune system weakens as you age, making it more difficult for older people to fight off infections.
  • Older adults are more likely to have long-term health problems that can put them at risk.

Conditions That May Raise Your Risk of serious complications with COVID-19

Heart problem: Although COVID-19 most often affects the airway and lungs, these organs work together with the heart to drive oxygen to the body’s tissues. When the lungs are overtaxed due to illness, the heart has to work harder, which creates challenges for people who are already living with heart disease. Raise your risk of severe illness.

Chronic airway and lung diseases: People with this long-term condition may already have lung damage that can set the stage for more severe infection with the new coronavirus because of scarring, inflammation, or lung damage. 

Diabetes and Obesity: Diabetes type 1 and type 2 both cause an increase in blood sugar. Poorly controlled blood sugar can cause viral diseases. In addition, diabetes increases inflammation and weakens the immune system, making it harder for people living with the condition to fight off disease in general. 

Weakened immune system: conditions and treatments that can weaken your immune system, including:

  • Organ transplants
  • Cancer treatments
  • Bone marrow transplant
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Long-term use of prednisone or similar drugs that weaken your immune system

Children are less likely to get COVID-19 than adults, and severe cases are rare.

Essential workers like doctors, nurses, nursing home workers, and home health aides are in the front lines of the fight against COVID-19. Grocery store employees, mail carriers, bus drivers, and others also have important jobs that can’t be done at home. The kind of work they do means they need to interact with others outside their homes, which puts them at higher risk of infection. 

Whether or not they are in a high-risk category, everyone needs to take steps to protect themselves by getting a vaccine that can prevent you from getting the COVID-19 virus or prevent you from becoming seriously ill if you get the COVID-19 virus. 

Experts recommend that you take these steps:

  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid large events and mass gatherings.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Avoid sharing dishes, glasses, towels, bedding and other household items if you’re sick.
  • Stay home as much as you can.
  • If you have to go out, make sure you stay 6 feet away from others, or about two arm lengths.
  • Meet up with other people outdoors when possible.
  • Wear a face mask in indoor public spaces and outdoors where there is a high risk of COVID-19 transmission, whether you are fully vaccinated or unvaccinated. 
  • Avoid large events and mass gatherings.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces in your home every day to stop the spread of the virus from person to person.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/coronavirus-and-covid19-who-is-at-higher-risk

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/coronavirus/in-depth/coronavirus-who-is-at-risk/art-20483301

https://www.webmd.com/lung/whos-at-risk-covid-19#1

COVID-19 Variants What You Need to Know

COVID-19 Variants: What You Need to Know

The virus that causes COVID-19, like all viruses, is constantly changing.  When there have been several significant mutations to the virus then it’s called a variant. Sometimes new variants emerge and disappear. Other times, new variants persist.

Variants are expected. The best way to slow the emergence of new variants is to reduce the spread of infection by taking measures to protect yourself including getting a COVID-19 vaccine when available. Vaccines keep you from getting sick, being hospitalized, or dying from COVID-19. 

Why does the coronavirus change?

It is normal for viruses to change, but it is still something scientists follow closely because there can be important implications.  Variants of viruses occur when there is a change or mutation to the virus’s genes. Mutations in viruses including the coronavirus causing the COVID-19 pandemic are neither new nor unexpected. 

Most changes have little to no impact on the virus’ properties. However, depending on where the changes are located in the virus’s genetic material, they may affect the virus’s properties, such as transmission (for example, it may spread more easily) or severity (for example, it may cause more severe disease).

The more viruses circulate, the more they may change. These changes can occasionally result in a virus variant that is better adapted to its environment compared to the original virus. This process of changing and selection of successful variants is called “virus evolution.” 

As long as the coronavirus spreads through the population, mutations will continue to happen.

How are the new coronavirus variants different?

Scientists monitor all variants but may classify certain ones as variants of interest, concern, or high consequence based on how easily they spread, how severe their symptoms are, and how they are treated.

Some variants seem to spread more easily and quickly than other variants, which may lead to more cases of COVID-19. An increase in the number of cases will put more strain on healthcare resources, lead to more hospitalizations, and potentially more deaths.

The mutations in the alpha version and some other variants seem to affect the coronavirus’s spike protein, which covers the outer coating of SARS-CoV-2 and gives the virus its characteristic spiny appearance. These proteins help the virus attach to human cells in the nose, lungs, and other areas of the body. This appears to make some of these new strains ‘stickier’ due to changes in the spike protein. Studies are underway to understand more about whether any of the variants are more easily transmitted.

A variant has one or more mutations that differentiate it from other variants in circulation. As expected, multiple variants of SARS-CoV-2 have been documented globally throughout this pandemic. More infectious variants such as beta, which first appeared in South Africa, may have increased ability to re-infect people who have recovered from earlier versions of the coronavirus, and also be somewhat resistant to some of the coronavirus vaccines in development. 

The delta coronavirus is considered a “variant of concern” because it appears to be more easily transmitted from one person to another. As of July 2021, delta is regarded as the most contagious form of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus so far. Delta is rapidly becoming the dominant variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and is now in many countries and people traveling internationally are likely to encounter it. Being fully vaccinated for COVID-19 can protect you from the delta variant, but breakthrough infections sometimes occur.

Will the COVID-19 vaccines work on the new variants?

Still, vaccines currently used appear to offer significant protection from severe disease caused by coronavirus variants. Although vaccines afford very high protection, infection with the delta and other variants remains possible. Fortunately, vaccination, even among those who acquire infections, appears to prevent serious illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. We need to continue all of our efforts to prevent viral transmission and to vaccinate as many people as possible, and as soon as we can.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/variants/variant-info.html

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/a-new-strain-of-coronavirus-what-you-should-know

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/variants/variant.html

Pregnancy and Covid-19 Vaccine: What You Need to Know

Pregnancy and Covid-19 Vaccine: What You Need to Know

Pregnancy is not a contraindication to getting the COVID-19 vaccine. If you are pregnant, you can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. It is advised to get the vaccine after the 1st trimester of pregnancy. There is currently no evidence that any vaccines, including COVID-19 vaccines, cause fertility problems. However, data are limited about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines for people who are pregnant. While there are currently no known risks of receiving the COVID-19 vaccine while pregnant, scientists are in the process of gathering additional data to learn more.

Currently, all Canadian provinces and territories offer COVID-19 vaccines to eligible pregnant individuals. COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) should not be withheld from pregnant individuals who choose to receive the vaccine. It is important to know that no study to date has specifically evaluated the coronavirus vaccine in pregnant and lactating women, though there have been a few pregnant women who were inadvertently enrolled in the vaccine trials. 

We strongly recommend that women talk with their doctor to discuss all factors about the vaccine and their pregnancy. Many pregnant women have medical conditions that put them at further increased risk. Another factor to consider is the level of activity of the pandemic in your community. Thus, there are not any known safety concerns, but more data will be available in the weeks and months ahead from additional studies.

I am breastfeeding, Can I get the COVID-19 vaccine?

Based upon available data, it appears safe to get the COVID-19 vaccine if you are nursing a baby. The vaccines do not contain live viruses, so being vaccinated does not pose a risk to the baby. Although the vaccines have not been studied in nursing mothers, lactating women should be offered the COVID-19 vaccine. You should not stop breastfeeding in order to be vaccinated against COVID-19. If you are vaccinated for the coronavirus, there is no need to delay or discontinue breastfeeding. 

Will the COVID-19 vaccine affect my fertility?

Women trying to become pregnant do not need to avoid pregnancy after vaccination. There is no evidence that the COVID-19 vaccine will not affect your fertility. Women actively trying to conceive may be vaccinated with the current COVID-19 vaccines. There is no reason to delay pregnancy after completing the vaccine series.

Can I still catch COVID-19 after getting the coronavirus vaccine?

Yes, you can still get COVID after being vaccinated, but you’re unlikely to get as sick. COVID-19 vaccines are effective. However, a small percentage of people who are fully vaccinated will still get COVID-19 if they are exposed to the virus that causes it. These are called “vaccine breakthrough cases.” The good news is the vaccine is very effective at preventing severe disease and death from COVID-19, even from the more virulent Delta strain.

Therefore, getting vaccinated for the coronavirus is an important consideration for pregnant women. Lactating women are not considered at higher risk of developing severe illness compared with the non-pregnant population.

Be sure to talk to your obstetrician about care considerations that are specific to you.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References: 

https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus/the-covid19-vaccine-and-pregnancy-what-you-need-to-know

https://theconversation.com/should-i-get-the-covid-19-vaccine-while-pregnant-or-breastfeeding-experts-explain-the-safety-evidence-and-clinical-trials-164144

Getting Pregnant During COVID-19 Pandemic

COVID-19 is still a new disease that we are learning more about each day. We know this has been a scary time for most people globally. Many people are living through their first pandemic, and even just getting household essentials has been a challenge some days.

During this time of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, people have questions about whether or not they should get pregnant. If you are pregnant or thinking about becoming pregnant, you’re likely concerned about how the pandemic will impact your pregnancy. We still have relatively little information about how this virus affects pregnant people and their pregnancies. It’s common to feel alarmed and stressed throughout this time, as starting or expanding a family brings up new questions. 

Are pregnant people at higher risk for COVID-19?

The overall risk of COVID-19 to pregnant women is low. However, the physiologic changes of pregnancy make pregnant people appear more likely to develop respiratory complications requiring intensive care than women who aren’t pregnant. Pregnant people who have other medical conditions might be at further increased risk for severe illness. More research is needed to know specifically how this virus impacts pregnant people since this virus COVID-19 is new.

Labor and delivery risks to the mother’s and the baby’s health?

If you have COVID-19 and are pregnant, your treatment will be aimed at relieving symptoms and may include getting plenty of fluids and rest, as well as using medication to reduce fever. If you’re very ill, you may need to be treated in the hospital. There is no definite evidence that the COVID-19 virus can be passed from the pregnant parent to the fetus through the placenta, called vertical transmission. If you give birth while you are positive for COVID-19, you do not need to have a cesarean section, or c-section, unless otherwise medically indicated. However, some research suggests that pregnant women with COVID-19 are also more likely to have a premature birth and cesarean delivery, and their babies are more likely to be admitted to a neonatal unit. 

If you are healthy as you approach the end of pregnancy, some aspects of your labor and delivery might proceed as usual. But be prepared to be flexible. You might be screened again before entering the labor and delivery unit to protect the health of you and your baby, definitely the facilities will limit the number of people you can have in the room during labor and delivery.

Preterm birth is the most common side effect on the fetus of a pregnant parent positive for COVID-19.

Postpartum Considerations

This is a stressful time, pay attention to your mental health. Reach out to family and friends for support while taking precautions to reduce your risk of infection with the COVID-19 virus. Access to early prenatal care is important and should be accessible during this time. However, public health experts are recommending avoiding unnecessary medical visits.  Talk to your health care provider about virtual visit options for checking in after delivery, as well as your need for an office visit. However, It’s recommended that postpartum care after childbirth be an ongoing process.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References

https://www.mayoclinic.org/

https://helloclue.com/articles/pregnancy-birth-and-postpartum/is-it-safe-to-get-pregnant-during-coronavirus

Importance of Pulse Oximeter During COVID-19

The whole world is greatly affected by the current COVID-19 pandemic caused due to emerging novel Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) which specifically attacks the respiratory system and reduces the oxygen-carrying capacity to develop hypoxia.

Many people with COVID-19 have low levels of oxygen in their blood, even when they feel well. Low oxygen levels can be an early warning sign that medical care is needed. The severely affected COVID-19 patients require ventilators to survive and to fulfill the need for oxygen. However, the number of ventilators is much less than that of the actual number of COVID-19 patients. 

What is a pulse oximeter and what does it measure?

A pulse oximeter is a small non-invasive device that is used to determine hypoxia in patients. The main function of the pulse oximeter is to determine the amount of oxygen saturation (SpO2), which indicates the amount of oxygen in the blood. This can give you valuable information about your health.

Can a pulse oximeter tell if someone has COVID-19?

You may be wondering if an oximeter can help detect COVID-19 early? 

Pulse oximeters are not recommended as a way to tell if someone has COVID-19.  Not everyone who tests positive for COVID-19 will develop low oxygen levels. There are people who may have a very uncomfortable fever, muscle aches, and GI upset at home, but never demonstrate low oxygen levels. Get tested if you have signs of COVID-19 or if you have been in close contact with someone who has it. The pulse oximeter can be used in primary clinical care to determine oxygen saturation. Furthermore, pulse oximeters have become a game-changer in the COVID-19 pandemic to detect the oxygen requirement in patients. However, there are several factors affecting the sensitivity of pulse oximeters that need to be understood to get an accurate reading. 

Can a pulse oximeter be a helpful tool for monitoring COVID-19 at home?

An oximeter can be a helpful tool for monitoring oxygen levels so that low oxygen levels can be detected early if a person has a mild case of COVID-19 and is self-treating at home. If you have tested positive for COVID-19 and are concerned about any developing symptoms, check immediately with your healthcare provider. If you are experiencing severe chest pain, uncontrollable coughing, or dusky lips or fingers, it’s time to go to the ER.

The pulse oximeter gives only primary judgment about oxygen saturation and it is not at all a substitute for the ABG analysis. Moreover, the pulse oximeter cannot be relied on as a sole monitor to check the various events such as cardiac complications/arrests, respiratory tract-related problems, oesophageal intubation, or failure of oxygen supply.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00194506.2020.1845988

https://www.houstonmethodist.org/blog/articles/2020/aug/can-an-oximeter-help-detect-covid-19-at-home/

https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/pulseoximeter.html

Symptoms and Spread of Covid-19

Over the past few months, our world has been flipped upside down. Schools have shut down until further notice. Coffee shops and restaurants have followed suit, only offering takeout options. Offices have told their workers to work from home. The streets and outdoor areas are quiet too. It’s as if our lives are on pause, waiting until we can return back to normal again. Covid-19 is the pandemic that has made people all across the globe feel like they’re in a science fiction movie. It’s important to be aware of what the symptoms of Covid-19 are and how it’s spread. By having this useful information, the right steps can be taken in preventing more cases from appearing.

What is Covid-19?

Covid-19 is a disease developed by a type of virus that falls under the umbrella of Coronavirus. Coronaviruses are a big family of viruses. They’re named coronavirus because, under a microscope, the virus is covered with pointed structures, making it appear crown-like. They can cause mild diseases like cold or more severe diseases like Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). Some diseases are more easily transmitted than others. This new strain of coronavirus causing COVID-19  is the latest coronavirus that has been discovered. It’s also seen as the most dangerous due to how easily it spreads. What started as a controllable outbreak quickly took over the world, causing countries to close their borders and halt their economies. In comparison to SARS, Covid-19 has led to more fatalities and a quicker spread. Consequently, it makes it difficult to contain.

Symptoms of Covid-19

Anyone can become infected with Covid-19. Researchers say that symptoms of Covid-19 are quite mild because they’re similar to a cold. You may not even know you have Covid-19 because it feels like any other typical cold. Some symptoms include cough, fever, difficulty breathing, the new loss of taste or smell, chills, and muscle pain. In more serious cases, you may experience persistent pressure in the chest, trouble breathing, and bluish lips. That’s when it’s important to seek medical attention.  In severe cases, being infected by Covid-19 can lead to death. However, a large percentage of Covid-19 deaths was because individuals had complications like heart problems or weak immune systems.

Covid-19 symptoms may take up to fourteen days to appear after exposure. Furthermore, evidence has shown that you can be infected by someone who is infected, but not showing symptoms. Hence, it’s important to make sure all safety guidelines are being followed when going out and cleanliness is being maintained. As of right now, the only way to be sure you have Covid-19 is to get tested. If you are coming back from a trip or have been on a recent flight, it’s important you self-isolate. Make sure you get in touch with a doctor so your symptoms can be monitored closely. Under no circumstance should you be leaving your house for anything?

Spread of Covid-19

When the world first became aware of Covid-19, the biggest challenge was to slow down and stop the spread. China went into lockdown, but then Italy’s cases started climbing up. Shortly after, the United States began going into a state of emergency. All of these occurrences happened within weeks of each other. Flights were being canceled and borders were shutting down. Yet, Covid-19 still managed to make many countries go into a state of emergency. Well, all it takes is one person and a sneeze.

Though there is still research being done, it is believed that that Covid-19 is very likely spread through droplet contact. Droplet contact is when illnesses can be transferred by infected droplets contacting the surfaces of the eyes, nose, or mouth. These droplets are quite large and can even be visible to the eye. For example, you may see these droplets when a person sneezes. Moreover, because these droplets are quite big, they typically only spread one to two meters. They don’t stay in the air for very long but can still make a huge impact. As a result, it’s important to respect the social distancing rules put in place. More space between people means less spread and infections happening.

Covid-19 threw most of our lives out of the loop. Face masks are our newest accessories and we need to stay in line at stores if there are too many people. Social distancing rules are still intact so you shouldn’t be seeing anyone outside your household. It can get lonely sometimes, but we have to keep in mind this is for the greater good. By distancing now, we can prevent further spread in the future. Stay home and stop the spread, you never know how many lives you can save.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

Source:

www.Salinetherapy.com

Where can I buy a pulse oximeter?

Pulse oximeters for use at home aren’t new, but as COVID-19 continues to make health and safety a top priority, more people are looking for ways to manage their health.

If you’re considering getting a pulse oximeter, you can have one shipped directly to your door and most can be purchased with pre-tax. While pulse oximeters are relatively easy to find right now, with coronavirus cases rising across the globe they may be in short supply soon. 

If you’re looking for recommendations, curious how pulse oximeters even work, and who can benefit the most from using them, read on. 

What types of pulse oximeters are available?

Pulse oximeter probes or sensors can be attached to the finger, nose, ear, toes, and forehead areas, however, the most accurate readings usually come from when the pulse oximeter is clamped to the finger, specifically the middle finger, as opposed to other body parts. 

There is a wide range of oximeters to choose from nowadays. There’s a basic pulse oximeter and sophisticated models, an oximeter that can store up t0 24 hrs of data, an alarm, and has wireless connectivity to a computer or smartphone via Bluetooth to transfer the recorded data. There’s also a wristband oximeter for the overnight recording of blood oxygen saturation and pulse rate 

How to choose an oximeter?

When shopping for at-home pulse oximeters, the first to consider is to find a medical grade and is certified by Health Canada, highly-rated pulse oximeters based on reviews and from reputable companies and sellers from Amazon, Walmart, BestBuy, drugstores, and more. These pulse oximeters are labeled for medical use. Most pulse oximeters also measure your heart rate, which is also a plus to many. Remember although it’s not entirely necessary for everyone, a pulse oximeter could help give you peace of mind. 

Where can you get a pulse oximeter?

Although it was nearly impossible to find a pulse oximeter in stock a few months ago, supplies are catching up with demand, and there are several available now if you would still like to buy one for extra assurance. Pulse oximeters, normally bought online like Amazon, Walmart, BestBuy, drugstores, or via medical device suppliers. Pulse oximeters can be easy to find right now.

Pulse oximeters can be very useful tools when they are used correctly. This means a Health Canada-approved device is being used according to instructions from the manufacturer or a medical professional. Not following the proper way in using the pulse oximeter can lead to faulty readings and misinterpreted results.

Although many places sell online there are very few products that are verified as medical grade and are certified by Health Canada. Health Canada is responsible for helping Canadians maintain and improve their health. It ensures that high-quality health services are accessible, and works to reduce health risks. They are a federal institution that is part of the Health portfolio. If you are in Canada please make sure you buy a Health Canada-approved product. While FDA has a certain level of standard, Health Canada has more elements into consideration to approve products that are safe and accurate for public use. You can visit the Health Canada website https://health-products.canada.ca/mdall-limh/ to check the status of a product if it is registered and licensed.

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.healthline.com/health/best-pulse-oximeter

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/reviewedcom/2020/11/24/where-buy-pulse-oximeters-amazon-walmart-cvs-and-more/6413563002/

https://nymag.com/strategist/article/best-pulse-oximeters.html

What is The Normal Oxygen Level?

Blood oxygen level is the amount of oxygen circulating in the blood. Your blood oxygen level measures how much oxygen is circulating with your red blood cells. The body closely monitors blood oxygen levels to keep them within a specific range, so that there is enough oxygen for the needs of every cell in the body. A person’s blood oxygen level is an indicator of how well the body distributes oxygen from the lungs to the cells, and it can be important for people’s health.

What should oxygen levels be?

Normal arterial oxygen pressure (PaO2) measured using the arterial blood gas (ABG) test is approximately 75 to 100 millimeters of mercury (75-100 mmHg). A blood oxygen level below 60 mm Hg is considered low and may require oxygen supplementation, depending on a doctor’s decision and the individual case.

Hypoxemia is diagnosed by physical examination and generally detected using ABG testing and is defined as blood oxygen levels above 120 mmHg.

When the level goes below 75 mmHg, the condition is generally termed hypoxemia. Levels under 60 mmHg are considered very low and indicate the need for supplemental oxygen. Supplemental oxygen is provided through an oxygen cylinder that is connected to the nose via a tube, with or without a mask.

Your blood oxygen level is measured as a percentage—95 to 100 percent is considered normal.

You should be check your blood oxygen if

  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Pulmonary fibrosis
  • Pulmonary hypertension
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Asthma
  • Congestive heart failure

Other conditions include:

  • Anemia
  • Sleep apnea (temporary cessation of breathing during sleep)
  • Smoking

How is the blood oxygen level measured?

The most efficient way to monitor blood oxygen levels is by an arterial blood gas or ABG test. For this test, a blood sample is taken from an artery, usually in the wrist. This procedure is very accurate, but it can be a little painful. Another fast and easy way is by the use of a pulse oximeter. It’s a small device that clips onto your fingertip. It shines a light into the tiny blood vessels in your finger and measures the oxygen from the light that’s reflected back.

When to see a doctor

  • severe and sudden shortness of breath
  • severe shortness of breath that get worse during exercise or physical activity
  • shortness of breath even when at rest
  • wake suddenly with shortness of breath or a feeling of choking

Disclaimer

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified healthcare provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

References:

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/321044

https://www.medicinenet.com/what_are_blood_oxygen_levels/article.htm

https://www.bannerhealth.com/healthcareblog/teach-me/blood-oxygen-level-what-you-need-to-know