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Nebulizers: Facts Function and Information

  • Published: 2015-02-03 (Rev. 2016-09-23) - Contact: Disabled World at Disabled World
  • Synopsis: Types, function, and information regarding nebulizers and the potential benefits of using one.

Main Document

"An estimated 50% of people who use an inhaler effectively do it without getting the intended amount of medication into their lungs."

Recently, a friend of mine was diagnosed with asthma that cannot be controlled by medication. She looked at me and said, 'Thomas - you write for Disabled-World.com, which nebulizer should I be researching' I told her that I had not written an article concerning nebulizers, but that I certainly would. When a person is searching for a nebulizer system or related products, it is important for them to understand the function of a nebulizer system and the potential benefits of using one.

A, 'nebulizer,' is a machine that converts certain medications from liquid form into a mist a person may inhale into their lungs. The purpose of a nebulizer is similar to that of an asthma inhaler and many times is used as an alternative to a metered dosage of say, Albuterol, from an inhaler. Usually, people who need a nebulizer for treatment are people who do not use an inhaler effectively; they do not receive the most benefit from the respiratory medication they take. An estimated 50% of people who use an inhaler effectively do it without getting the intended amount of medication into their lungs. Due to the trouble with using an inhaler effectively, or on the recommendation of the person's doctor and their recommendation, a number of people choose to use a nebulizer system - particularly children and adults who are older.

If a person has decided that using a nebulizer for respiratory treatments is the right choice for themselves or someone they love, they will most likely want some level of guidance where finding the right nebulizer is concerned. There are some different nebulizer systems available on the market, yet all of them fall within a couple of basic categories. The nebulizers in these categories have distinctive features and include:

Tabletop Nebulizer Systems: Tabletop nebulizer systems are designed for use inside and can be placed on a still surface that is sturdy. They are usually less expensive than nebulizer systems that are hand-held and tend to come with a longer warranty. They might also be more suitable for infants or small children who need stationary use.

Hand-held Nebulizer Systems: Hand-held nebulizer systems offer a person more mobility during times of treatment because they operate as the person holds them. They are usually more compatible with power sources other than AC cords such as a 12V DC car adapter or a battery. Hand-held nebulizers are often times smaller and lighter than tabletop nebulizer systems.

My friend who is seeking a nebulizer for personal use is also one of the very fortunate people who experience forms of disabilities to have a job. I hope she chooses the hand-held version personally, it is more mobile. Among hand-held and tabletop nebulizer systems that are two distinctly different methods of, 'nebulization,' or ways that a liquid medication is turned into an aerosol mist.

Ultrasonic Nebulizers: Ultrasonic nebulizers use high-frequency sound vibrations to transform liquid medication into a breathable mist. They are silent, a big bonus for some people, and they tend to deliver medication more rapidly than jet nebulizers. Ultrasonic nebulizers are usually more recommended for people using a nebulizer system to treat cystic fibrosis, and the aerosol particles are usually smaller and more uniform in size.

Piston-Pump Compressor: Piston-pump compressors, also called, 'Aerosol Nebulizers,' or, 'Jet,' nebulizers deliver air from a piston-powered compressor through the liquid medication via the use of a nebulizer cup and tubing - something that creates a breathable mist. They are generally less expensive than ultrasonic nebulizers, yet are shown to be equally clinically effective at treating the majority of respiratory conditions. They also have a tendency to be a bit loud.

Nebulizer Questions and Answers

Where will the nebulizer be used For people who require greater mobility, battery packs and portability are important.

Will you need compatible components Some manufacturers design their nebulizer accessories to be compatible only with their products. Ensure that you are purchasing the right parts for your nebulizer.

Ask yourself, 'who is the nebulizer for' If it is for a child, you should consider purchasing equipment that is designed for children with playful or colorful themes. If it for an infant, you might need to ensure that you have an infant inhalation mask or additional, needed accessories.

Sterilization and Cleaning: Sterilization and cleaning of your respiratory products is very important. Keeping your nebulizer products sterilized and clean ensures that you receive the most out of these products while receiving the best level of treatment. Bear in mind how to appropriately store your nebulizer and its products between uses.

How often do nebulizer accessories need to be replaced The majority of nebulizer products require regular cleaning and maintenance. Where accessories such as mouthpieces, nebulizer cups, compressor air filters or tubing are concerned - there are recommended periods of use. After the period of use is over, the product might lose its effectiveness. Be sure to remain aware of which items are reusable or disposable and how often these items must be replaced.



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