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Keep Healthy, Why Should You Care Blood Oxygen Saturation (SpO2)?

Image: Supplied

If you find you're always getting tired, sleepy or a bit dizzy, it could be because you're not getting enough sleep, but it may also be due to low blood oxygen saturation (SpO2). SpO2 indicates what percentage of your blood is saturated with oxygen, which tells you how well your red blood cells carry oxygen. A common symptom in patients with COVID-19 is "lower blood oxygen saturation". As a vital sign, blood oxygen saturation is an important physiological parameter reflecting respiratory and circulatory function.

Breathing is crucial, and is the most common way for the body to maintain healthy SpO2 levels. As you inhale, hemoglobin picks up oxygen in the lungs, then travels throughout the body, releasing this oxygen as it goes. Generally, most children and adults do not need to worry about their blood oxygen levels, but since the coronavirus pandemic, SpO2 readings have become more useful than ever. As the virus causes lung damage and weakens the lungs' ability to supply oxygen, doctors have come to rely on SpO2 as an important indicator of health, along with body temperature.

At a U.N. briefing in Geneva, Margaret Harris (a WHO spokeswoman) said:

"...COVID-19 patients at home should have the use of pulse oximetry, that's measuring the oxygen levels, so you can identify whether someone at home is deteriorating and would be better off having hospital care."

Image: Supplied

A pulse oximeter shows the percentage of oxygen in your blood as an SpO2 reading. It also measures your heart rate. You might recognise such a device if you went to a doctor and they placed one on the end of your finger:

For someone who’s healthy, the normal blood oxygen saturation level will be around 95–100%.

If the oxygen level is below this, it can be an indicator that there is a respiratory problem which is what COVID-19 affects. Also the levels will be low if you have breathing problems or chest pain.

But we see a pulse oximeter is non-sustainable measure and inconvenient and not timely if we want a fast measure anytime and anywhere. Fortunately, the new launched Huawei Band 6,, already have this technology which allows you to read your SpO2 levels.

As we compare these 2 devices, Huawei Band 6 is much better choice, with affordable RRP R1699 and 7*27h continuous measuring. Now it is on hot sale, and you can find it in Telkom stores, Huawei Store, Takealot online, Total Sports, Sportsman Warehouse, Cape Union Mart stores.

Finger Pulse Oximeter

  • Price: Over R1 500
  • Disadvantage: Non-sustainable measure, single function and inconvenient and untimely

Huawei Wearable

  • Price: Only R1 699
  • Advantage: Measure anytime, anywhere, rich function and convenient and quick

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