Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) can help improve neurological function, including brain function. As you age, your mental function deteriorates. Traumatic brain injuries or diseases can also impact your neurological functions. Hyperbaric chamber therapy can help improve your cognitive functioning, which in turn can improve your ability to perform daily tasks and activities.
What Are Neurological Functions?
Neurological functions are the various processes in the brain, spinal cord, and nerves throughout your body. These include brain function (memory, learning, attention), sensory perception (touch, taste, smell), motor control (movement), and balance.
Neurological disorders can be a result of head trauma, brain tumors, and other injuries that occur in the brain. The good news is that treatments are available to help with these disorders. One type of treatment is hyperbaric oxygen therapy which uses high pressure and oxygen to increase the amount of oxygen that reaches your brain and blood vessels. This therapy helps treat chronic wounds, infections, carbon monoxide poisoning, and many other conditions.
Many different types of neurological disorders can affect your life, some of which include:
- Cerebral Palsy – A brain injury during childhood that affects muscle tone and coordination
- Migraines – Severe headaches that can be debilitating
- Stroke – When a blood clot blocks an artery in the brain, causing damage to brain cells and tissue
Benefits of Good Neurological Health
When you have a neurological problem, it can affect your life. You may not be able to do certain activities or even move as freely as you once did. Good neurological health allows you to move around freely without pain or discomfort. It also enables you to think clearly and solve problems efficiently at work or home. If you have any issues with your nerves or brain, it will hinder your ability to function properly in everyday life.
Hyperbaric Chamber Therapy for the Brain
HBOT involves breathing 100% pure oxygen at greater than usual atmospheric pressure in a pressurized chamber. The increased pressure allows for greater oxygen absorption by the body’s capillaries and other blood vessels. This increased saturation of red blood cells with oxygen helps boost the body’s natural healing process. The body begins repairing damaged areas of the body more quickly than it would otherwise be able to do on its own.
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help treat wounds, burns, carbon monoxide poisoning, and decompression sickness. In recent years, it has also proven to help with multiple sclerosis, brain injury and stroke recovery, autism spectrum disorders (ASD), Alzheimer’s disease, and other neurological problems.
While HBOT has been around since the 1960s, physicians have only recently started using it to treat neurodegenerative diseases. This particular type of treatment is a great option for traumatic brain injuries or stroke victims. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy for neurological conditions works by increasing the amount of oxygen delivered directly into the brain tissue. This facilitates the restoration of damaged cells and new tissue growth.
HBOT and Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) may be an effective treatment for traumatic brain injuries (TBI). TBIs occur when there is a sudden trauma to the head that causes damage to the brain tissue. TBIs can be classified as mild, moderate, or severe based on the Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS).
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can help improve cerebral autoregulation in patients with a traumatic brain injury. Hyperbaric chamber therapy may also improve neurological function in patients with chronic stroke. HBOT can improve neurological functions following TBIs by increasing cerebral oxygenation, which leads to improved cellular function and tissue repair.
Improved Blood Flow to the Brain
Another benefit of hyperbaric oxygen therapy is improved blood flow to the brain. Your circulation system gets damaged after a traumatic brain injury or stroke, leading to reduced blood flow to your brain. Hyperbaric oxygen treatment can increase nitric oxide levels in your body, which improves your circulation system. As more oxygen and nitric oxide reach your brain, it helps it heal faster. HBOT may also reduce inflammation and swelling in your brain, which can help stop further damage from occurring during an injury or stroke.
Improved Memory Function
The brain is sensitive to inflammation caused by oxidative stress and vascular changes associated with aging and chronic diseases like Alzheimer’s. HBOT can increase the production of new cells in the hippocampus (which is responsible for memory processes).
HBOT works by increasing the blood flow in your brain and improving the delivery of nutrients to the brain cells. The nutrients help enhance mental clarity, concentration, and overall cognitive functioning. HBOT may help improve memory and reduce forgetfulness in people with Alzheimer’s disease (AD) or other types of dementia. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy may also help reduce depression and anxiety symptoms by improving neurotransmitter levels in your brain.
Improve Your Overall Brain Function
Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can increase the number of neural connections in the brain. HBOT stimulates the production of proteins that are important for brain growth and development. It also increases blood flow to the brain, allowing it to heal more quickly after an injury or illness.
Improved Cerebral Autoregulation
Cerebral autoregulation is the body’s ability to adjust blood flow according to changes in pressure and oxygen levels in the brain tissue. HBOT can also improve cerebral autoregulation (CA). Cerebral autoregulation decreases because our vascular system becomes less flexible as we age. Less flexibility causes a decrease in blood flow through the brain and increased pressure within those vessels. Decreased blood flow causes a reduction in oxygen delivery to neurons within the brain’s gray matter due to hypoxia or lack of oxygenation.
Cerebral autoregulation is the ability of an organism’s blood vessels to adjust their size in response to changes in blood flow. This ability allows for better control of blood pressure within the vessel walls, which results in less damage during periods of increased blood pressure or pressure changes within the vessels themselves.
It’s Time to Feel Better
Neurological health is a critical part of overall health and well-being. It involves the nervous system, which includes the brain and spinal cord. Many neurological disorders can cause pain, fatigue, and other severe symptoms. Hyperbaric chamber therapy can help manage these symptoms and may even improve them. If you’re interested in receiving this type of therapy, find an approved hyperbaric facility with the necessary credentials and experience to give you the treatment you need.