Oxygen powers every one of our trillions of cells. Cutting off our body's oxygen supply, even for just a few minutes, could result in permanent damage to the brain or even death. Sometimes an inadequate flow of oxygen can lead to an anoxic brain injury.
However, there are therapies available that may be able to help those who have suffered from this type of condition heal. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is one of them.
WHAT IS AN ANOXIC BRAIN INJURY?
By definition, anoxic refers to “an abnormally low amount of oxygen in the body tissues.”
And so, an anoxic brain injury occurs when the brain is starved of oxygen. Any event that prohibits you from breathing could potentially result in an anoxic brain injury.
ANOXIC BRAIN INJURY CAUSES INCLUDE:
- Drug overdose
- Carbon monoxide poisoning
- Cardiac arrest
- Extremely low blood pressure
- Almost drowning
ANOXIC BRAIN INJURY SYMPTOMS MAY INclude:
- Loss of consciousness
- Trouble speaking
- Paraplegia or quadriplegia
- Poor coordination
- Loss of vision
- Confusion or easy irritability
- Memory loss
- Inability to understand information or to focus
- Mood swings or personality changes
HOW DO YOU TREAT AN ANOXIC BRAIN INJURY?
While some people recover from an anoxic brain injury, others suffer permanent damage. If a medical professional has confirmed that you have experienced an anoxic brain injury, your next step is to inquire about the different treatments available. Most patients are evaluated by a neurologist and receive physical, occupational, and possibly speech therapy as well.
A new, exciting way to treat an anoxic brain injury that some people may not have even heard of is hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT). HBOT may sound complicated or intimidating, but it’s actually a simple treatment that is neither invasive nor strenuous. During a HBOT treatment, you go inside a hyperbaric chamber, or a pressurized vessel, where you inhale pure oxygen for a certain amount of time. An HBOT protocol revitalizes the cells in your brain and body, improving their efficiency and functionality.
Inside the hyperbaric chamber, which is a controlled environment overseen by a medical professional, you simply relax and breath normally. During the 60 to 90-minute treatment, some people catch up on their favorite TV shows or watch a movie they’ve wanted to see.
HBOT has been shown in clinical research to be a potentially effective tool for anoxic brain injury recovery. Improvements in gross motor function as well as concentration and information process are possible. But keep in mind that like any other medical condition, a person’s ability to heal is directly related to their individual situation.
Learn more about hyperbaric oxygen therapy and its role in your anoxic brain injury recovery.