The Quest for a Happy Head

My friend, Sue, is thinking of buying a portable hyperbaric chamber. If you think that sounds high-tech, you’d be right, but not insanely so. It’s basically a pop-up chamber large enough for person to hang out inside, which creates an internal air profile that’s higher pressure and higher in oxygen that standard ambient conditions.

The idea is that you can set this thing up in your house to self-administer this particular kind of oxygen treatment, rather than going to a hospital or clinic to receive it. You might think it would be a ridiculous process to try and get one’s hands on a medical apparatus of this nature. That was my first thought when Sue mentioned it. But apparently, hyperbaric therapy equipment for home use, in Melbourne at least, can be ordered from local companies. This is a thing.

In case you’re wondering, it’s her migraines that Sue’s looking to treat with this doohickey. She’s completely at her wit’s end with them, and has done a crazy amount of research into possible solutions, even ones that seem a bit outlandish. She told me that there isn’t really any scientific evidence that this oxygen therapy can combat migraines, but people online report that it’s helped them deal with theirs. Sue feels like she’s tried everything else, so figures it might be worth a go.

While it’s not exactly a household term in Melbourne, hyperbaric medicine sounds like its a field with a growing fan base. It’s definitely been medically established as a treatment for the bends (you know, the decompression illness that people can get from scuba diving) and seems to be successful in certain cases of treating necrotic wounds. And anecdotally, at least, there seems to be something to be said for it in assisting with other health issues, ranging from brain injuries to developmental problems. 

Sue tells me that, if nothing else, it’s considered to be very safe. I really want her to be free of migraines, so I wish her the best of luck with the whole thing!

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