People who have been diagnosed with sleep disorders — like sleep apnoea — are often referred to undergo pulse oximetry during sleep by their medical provider.
Sleep apnoea is considered a dangerous sleeping disorder where one’s breathing rapidly stops and starts while asleep. The negative health impacts if this condition is not monitored is excessive. If you’re a patient who has recently been suspected of having a sleeping disorder and want to learn how to use a pulse oximeter to have a more definitive answer, here’s a guide to help you learn more about using a pulse oximeter to test for sleep apnoea.
What is a Pulse Oximeter?
A pulse oximeter is a device used to determine if a person is suffering from a sleep disorder like sleep apnoea. This test can be done at home and is very easy to do as long as you have the proper device and knowledge. This device helps determine your heart rate and checks oxygen level in your blood.
If you think you are suffering from sleep apnoea, we recommend using pulse oximeter at home to record your data and let your medical provider diagnose you with any sleeping disorders.
How To Check Oxygen Levels At Home?
Checking your blood oxygen level is very important as it helps us know that everything is functioning normally within our bodies. This can also help us determine if we are suffering from a medical condition if results are skewed.
There are two ways to check your oxygen levels while you’re at home. First is by taking a sample of your blood with a needle or by using a pulse oximeter.
How to Use a Pulse Oximeter
Using a pulse oximeter to test if you are suffering from sleep apnoea or other health conditions is very easy. As long as you have a proper pulse oximeter device, then you’re on the right track. At Home Healthcare Online, our Bluetooth Pulse Oximeter allows you to check your oxygen level at home and it also helps track your heart rate in the app. This simply means that this device does not only help determine your oxygen level but it also helps determine any irregularities and different patterns in your breathing while you are asleep.
Here's how you can use a pulse oximeter:
- Warm up your fingers before using the device (you can do it by opening and closing your palms for a few seconds)
- Simply apply the plastic clip to the end of your finger
- Make sure to position your finger in the device correctly pointing toward the LED light and ensure you have no nail polish or jewellery on the finger
How Does Pulse Oximetry Work?
During the test, the data is recorded continuously overnight by the device. The results will then show you a graph. You can show this graph to your medical provider who will review and determine if there are any abnormal changes and behaviours in your oxygen level while you are asleep.
If there is a desaturation in your oxygen level while you are asleep, this means that you are probably suffering from sleep apnoea.
Reasons Why Your Blood Oxygen Level Drops
There are many possible reasons why your blood oxygen level suddenly drops. And while sleep apnoea is one of them, it may also be because of:
- Allergic reactions
- Other diseases like lung cancer and emphysema
- Viruses like COVID-19 or pneumonia
- Being put under anesthetic drugs
If you think you are suffering or experiencing any of the situations above, it’s best to contact your healthcare provider immediately for help.
Sleep apnoea is a serious medical condition or sleeping disorder that should be monitored. If you think you are suffering from sleep apnoea or if you are having trouble sleeping, it’s best to check your blood oxygen level overnight through the use of a pulse oximeter.AtHome Healthcare Online, we have a range of pulse oximeters that you can use to help determine your blood oxygen level and pulse rate even while at home. Check out our site for more information about our products like masks spacer Australia, nebuliser Australia and peak flow Australia.