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5 Tips to Boost Your Oxygen Saturation Level at Home

In case of a Covid-19 infection, you may experience a reduction in your oxygen saturation level. Learn how you can improve your SpO2 level while staying at home.

  • 09 May 2021
  • 5 min read

The second Covid-19 wave has hit India badly, and it is believed to be more dreadful than the first wave. On May 6th 2021, India recorded a total of 4,14,000 fresh Covid-19 cases, which is the record single-day surge seen by the country. The second wave of the pandemic is spreading rapidly, and the symptoms faced by the infected citizens are much more severe.

One of the most common and dangerous symptoms experienced by many Covid-19 positive patients is a rapid drop in their blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) level. As a result, they are facing acute breathing problems. Such a drop in SpO2 levels has been the biggest reason behind so many casualties during the second wave of coronavirus in India.

In case of a positive diagnosis, or if you begin to feel breathless, we recommended frequent monitoring of oxygen saturation using an oximeter. According to doctors, if your SpO2 falls below 94%, it can be a dangerous sign. With or without a Covid-19 diagnosis, this doesn't mean that you should panic. In case you're unable to get a hospital bed and/or oxygen cylinder, you can still take steps to boost your blood's SpO2 level while staying at your home.

Check out these easy ways to improve your oxygen saturation level from your home:

1. Lie down in the "prone" position

Proning is the best position to increase the oxygen level of your body. It is scientifically proven and recommended by most doctors as well as the Health Ministry of India. In this method, the person has to lie down on his/her belly with his/her chest raised using the support of pillows. You can place one pillow beneath your neck and two pillows beneath your shins and lie down on your stomach or belly.

You can also lie on your right or left side or sit at a 90-degree angle in the "fowler" position and practice rapid breathing. When you notice a drop in your SpO2 level, we recommend remaining in the prone position for at least two to three hours. This will improve ventilation in your lungs, and hence, your oxygen saturation level should begin improving.

2. Include more antioxidants in your diet

Antioxidants allow your body to use oxygen more efficiently, thereby helping your blood's oxygen saturation level. Hence, you can include more antioxidants such as blueberries, cranberries, strawberries, blackberries, kidney beans, plums, and artichoke hearts in your daily diet to maintain your SpO2 level.

You can also consider having foods rich in fatty acids and Vitamin F. These foods work to increase the capacity of the haemoglobin in your bloodstream to carry oxygen. Iron-rich foods such as green vegetables, apples, legumes, fish, poultry etc. also help by strengthening the red blood cells of your body.

3. Practice slow and deep breathing

Your breathing pattern can have a vast effect on your blood's oxygen saturation level. By changing your breathing style, you can provide a significant boost to your blood's SpO2 level. Recently, doctors and scientists have discovered that those who breathe using their upper chest and inhale less air experience reduced oxygen levels in their bodies.

Therefore, the correct breathing method involves slow and deep inhaling, using your diaphragm and not your chest. This will allow you to inhale as much air as possible, and hence, your body will be able to get more oxygen. Also, it's better to breathe from your nose rather than the mouth.

4. Drink lots of fluid

Keeping yourself hydrated is another important method to improve your blood's oxygen saturation level. When you drink lots of water, your lungs remain properly hydrated, which improves their ability to oxygenate and expel carbon dioxide. Therefore, the oxygen saturation level of your body gets improved.

Also, drinking 2-3 litres of water may improve your blood's oxygen saturation level by up to 5 per cent. Drinking lots of water also helps in regulating body temperature and boosting the immunity of your body.

5. Try aerobic exercises

Aerobic exercises not only act as a catalyst for your body's metabolic activities but also help in relieving breathing problems and improving your blood's oxygen saturation level. They help the cells of our body obtain and utilise the available oxygen better, thereby improving the SpO2 level of your body. They also increase your body's endurance and immunity.

If you're Covid-19 positive, hard aerobic training is not recommended. What you can do is indulge in light exercises such as walking, swimming, cycling etc. If you are getting exhausted, don't fret. Take breaks and do your exercises for five to six minutes only at regular intervals. Sprint and interval training are the most recommended training methods to increase the oxygen level.

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The final word

As Covid-19 cases are surging across the country, hospitals are overloaded and overburdened. In such a scenario, learning how to maintain your blood oxygen saturation at home is essential. In case your SpO2 level drops down severely, get immediate medical help. However, you can avoid hospitalisation if your symptoms are mild and your doctor does not recommend getting admitted. To get a financial cover against the hefty hospitalisation expenses you may incur due to Covid-19, you can procure a Corona Kavach Policy from ICICI Lombard today!

We at ICICI Lombard hope that the situation gets normal soon, but we can't guarantee which virus may hit us again. This is why we advise getting health insurance, which will keep you stress-free mentally and financially. We have health insurance policies like Health AdvantEdge insurance for familyPersonal Protect Policy, top up health insurance and Arogya Sanjeevani Policy, which cover you financially if you fall ill or meet with an accident.

Are you looking for methods to maintain your blood saturation level at home? Here are 5 tips to boost your oxygen level. Explore more health & fitness related blogs at ICICI Lombard's Health Insurance blog now!

Explore other Insurance products offered by ICICI Lombard like Car Insurance, Bike Insurance & Travel Insurance.

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