I’ve been having oxygen therapy now for a couple of months so what have I found? Has it helped? What are the benefits? Well I’m going, once a week now, so that tells you something.
- Full of energy – Straight after a session, I often feel a bit sleepy. It is so calming inside the chamber, so quiet and a real opportunity for an hour of down time, reading, listening to music etc. with no disturbances. But the best bit is that I sleep so well now and wake up full of beans.
- A good night’s sleep – not to be underestimated, getting enough sleep when you’re itchy can be a challenge but since doing o2 I sleep like a baby. Not a screaming baby that wakes up every hour – the zonked out dead to the world kind.
- Stronger skin that isn’t so dry – I’m using much less emollient and not getting that horrible tight itchy feeling in the middle of the day that means more moisturising is needed. This not only makes life easier, it will save me money and faff having to remember to put in a prescription every month for more tubs of lard, sorry Epaderm.
- Less boils for less time – OK I’ll come clean. I get boils. On my legs. They’re gross, they get infected and can throb all day. They go away in the end after being treated with tea tree oil, aloe vera and drawing ointment when they’re really bad. Since having oxygen therapy I have far fewer boils and the ones I do get never get as big, recede within days and don’t get to the throbbing, can’t bear clothes on it, can’t kneel down stage.
- Goodbye nodular prurigo – well I wouldn’t say it has completely gone and there is more to controlling my NP that just oxygen therapy, but I can’t remember the last time in the last few months that I had a bad attack. The other key for me is avoiding processed foods – these will trigger an NP attack. For some reason the oxygen really helps. I’ve only had a few really bad bits, the bits that stay around, scab over, itch like blazes and bleed like a geyser.
- Irritable bowel, what irritable bowel? – I could almost forget that I get IBS at the moment. I get the odd bloating stomach but then I have always been the woman-with-the-amazing-expanding-stomach. But the crippling pain, the stabbing cramps, the terrible flatulence, the nausea, the constipation… all gone. Literally. This could be the biggest change; I can’t prove it’s the oxygen that has done this but it’s a bit of coincidence if it’s not. It really is 80% better. Almost a miracle.
- Great for asthma – what’s not to like about breathing on 100% pure oxygen for an hour? It really does help my breathing which is never great at this time of year when the mould spores are in the air.
- Meeting some amazing people – The oxygen tank I use is at the Chiltern’s MS Centre, right on my doorstep and it is an amazing centre. I have met some inspirational people with MS and others who have regular oxygen to recover from an infection, chemo-therapy, an injury, to relieve chrohns etc; 20% of people who use the tanks don’t have MS. MS patients can use the oxygen for free but it’s quite cheap per session for me, I pay £100 for 5 sessions at a go so it’s not much each week when you consider the benefits.
I do get very painful joints to which hasn’t really got much better. I plan to do more exercise as that does help and get in some more sessions with the osteopath before my next oxygen treatment to see if I can encourage some strengthening and healing my poor old glass back.
It’s not a miracle cure by any means but it does seem to have really helped reduce overall inflammation. I still get the odd flare up, like this week, having overdone things a bit, working too long hours and not looking after myself. I now have cold sores, am a bit more itchy and feeling very run down. After oxygen this morning though, I am a bit less itchy, feel calmer, am listening to my body and having a night in by the roaring wood burning stove with a mug of redbush tea. An early night tonight and I’ll be well on the way to healing.
Special thanks to everyone at the MS centre for making me feel so welcome.