Each year, at least 430 people die from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in the United States. This is unfortunate because it is an entirely preventable cause of death. All you need are reliable detectors, and you can easily leave the area of contamination well before the poisoning has a detrimental and lasting effect on your body.

Follow this guide if you suspect you or a loved one has experienced CO exposure and possible poisoning.

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Symptoms

The first step in treating someone for carbon monoxide poisoning is knowing they are suffering from it. This means you need to know the signs and symptoms. Common symptoms are shortness of breath and nausea.

Symptoms can be different for everyone. The only way to make a definitive determination is for a doctor to perform a blood test. However, look for these signs if you suspect CO exposure.

  • Headache
  • Chest pain
  • Fainting
  • Mental confusion
  • Shortness of breath
  • Upset stomach
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of muscle coordination

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Treatment

If you suspect someone has CO poisoning, immediately call 911 or get them to an emergency room as quickly as possible. They will be given an oxygen mask that will deliver pure oxygen to help combat the CO concentration as fast as possible.

Someone suffering from mild poisoning will quickly experience health benefits from an oxygen mask. However, for someone experiencing severe CO poisoning, oxygen therapy will need to be more intensive.

In these situations, the person will get placed in a hyperbaric chamber. These chambers help by forcibly pushing oxygen into the body for faster absorption rates.

Long Term Home Care

In some situations, CO poisoning can have lasting effects on the body. As a result, your doctor may determine that ongoing therapy is required. This is when you’ll want to consider home hyperbaric chamber cost.

It can be worth the investment to perform this ongoing treatment in the comfort of your home, thereby reducing hospital treatment costs.

Why Oxygen Therapy?

Your internal organs need oxygen to function. When you have CO poisoning, you have a higher than normal amount of carbon monoxide in your system and an unusually low amount of oxygen. While your body naturally “cleanses” itself of CO, poisoning happens when it can’t keep up with the accumulation rate.

Oxygen therapy helps your body come back to normal levels by increasing the speed of CO replacement with oxygen. Think of it as helping your body perform better.

The Best Treatment Is Prevention

As mentioned at the beginning of this article, carbon monoxide poisoning is entirely preventable. Replace old smoke detectors with a dual detector that will alert you to excessive amounts of CO in the air. Have your fuel-burning fireplaces and appliances regularly checked.

Treat Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

If you suspect that you or someone else is actively suffering from carbon monoxide poisoning, you need to act quickly. Get them to fresh air, call 911, and deliver CPR if necessary. Once in the ambulance or at the hospital, they will begin oxygen therapy.

Check out our other health articles for more helpful advice on taking care of your body.

By Manali