An oxygen bar is an establishment that offers oxygen for recreational use. These facilities may be stand-alone bars or offered inside spas, yoga studios, airports, casinos, restaurants, tanning salons, resorts and even nightclubs. Proponents of this concept believe that the inhalation of purified oxygen has health benefits for the body.
How the Concept Works
The normal air we breath has about 21% oxygen content. Because of added smoke, pollution and other harmful toxins that may be in the air, it’s believed that periodic inhalation of higher quality air can improve certain aspects of physical health. Though suppliers of oxygen for recreational use are careful not to violate government regulations by claiming any medical benefits. Most customers will report feeling calmer, refreshed, more relaxed and maybe even a little euphoric after visiting an oxygen bar. In addition to the higher oxygen content provided by this facility, you may often be able to choose added elements such as essential oils for the benefit of aromatherapy. Breathing eucalyptus, lavender or mint may have its own significant health benefits.
Oxygen Bar Details
You can expect to pay a rate of about $1 per minute for the use of oxygen at an oxygen bar. The gas is distributed via a nasal cannula. This is a similar apparatus to that of a normal medical oxygen machine, where a rubber tube is secured behind the ears and inserted into the nostrils. While the FDA has ruled that the sale of oxygen is equivalent to dispensing a prescription drug, they have allowed individual state boards of licensing to decide on regulations for the provision of such a service without a prescription. According to many professionals of alternative medicine, the human body is becoming deprived of necessary oxygen and periodic inhalation of a purer form it may remove toxins and potentially even fight cancer. Breathing oxygen can strengthen the immune system, reduce stress, increase alertness and concentration and relax the body. Reports have claimed that hangovers, headaches, migraines, altitude sickness and sinus problems can be cleared up by taking advantage of this service.
Cautions and Concerns
As always, there are two sides to an issue. While advocates claim at very worst, customers will leave feeling no different from when they walked into an oxygen bar, medical professionals and others in opposition to this concept explain that there may be detrimental effects from the use of this service. Aside from the fact that concentrated oxygen may be a fire hazard, excessive doses may be damaging to the health. Higher concentrations of oxygen can cause oxygen toxicity. This is unlikely to happen at an oxygen bar, however, as they provide a low fraction of oxygen for brief time periods. Those who suffer from asthma, emphysema and other pulmonary diseases, and those who have recently undergone certain types of chemotherapy should avoid oxygen bars. Additionally, the use of essential oils for aromatherapy may cause inflammation in the lungs. Proper maintenance of oxygen equipment is of primary concern as clay filters may produce mold or other organisms which can cause harmful effects if not kept clean.