Ozone Therapy: What Is it Used For, and Is It Legit?
Updated: Jun 17, 2021
Aching back, breathing problems, and immune system dysfunction..
What do all of these have in common?
We live in a world where processed foods, artificial preservatives, and toxic lifestyles are the norm. Where does this lead?
Often, it leads to an imbalance in our bodies. Inflammatory cells make it hard for oxygen to deliver nutrients to other parts of our body. This leads to what many of us experience: joint pain, infections, wounds, and cancers.
Having a proper balance of oxygen is key to maintaining a healthy life. Exercise is a great way to boost oxygen levels, but what if you can't do that?
If you’re experiencing chronic inflammation and are looking for alternative healing methods, ozone therapy could be for you. This article discusses what it is, how it can help, how effective it is, and any associated risks.
Ready to dive in? Let’s go!
What is Ozone Therapy?
Ozone therapy is the process of giving your body ozone gas. Ozone (O³) is a gas that comes from oxygen. When your body receives a large dose of oxygen, the tissues become saturated. This helps things like blood flow and regulating your immune system. It also helps speed up the healing process.
Scientists find it kills or disables viral, fungal, and bacterial cells, all the while leaving normal cells alone.
Europe used this therapy for over 100 years, long before the discovery of antibodies. It remains a popular treatment choice today.
What Is It Good For?
For over a century, ozone therapy has been used to treat inflammation, wounds, infections, and cancer.
Some areas include:
Immune disorders: Ozone supports the immune system. One study involved ozone being given through the vein to HIV patients. Over the next two years, their viral load was greatly reduced (3)
Diabetes: Those who have diabetes sometimes suffer complications, such as wounds and sores. Ozone therapy has been shown to help close up foot ulcers and other wounds (2).
Breathing disorders: Those who suffered from COPD participated in a 2014 study (1). Intravenous ozone therapy helped improve the quality of life for these individuals. If you have severe lung disease, you may not want to try this as it can irritate your lungs further.
Disk injury: Some experiments have been performed on patients with herniated disks. When ozone gas was injected into the spine, many patients experienced pain relief.
Anti-Aging: Oxidative stress ages cells faster than anything. This is because there is an imbalance between cells that carry and use oxygen, and cells that detox and get rid of it. Usually, there is not enough oxygen to flush out the toxins. Ozone can help by giving your body more oxygen to bring your body back into balance.
How Safe Is It?
The FDA does not consider ozone therapy safe above a certain amount (more than 0.05ppm). In comparison, many alternative medicine doctors have seen positive effects by using it.
While more studies are needed, some research indicates ozone therapy may become more common in the years ahead.
What Are the Benefits?
The biggest benefit of using ozone therapy is a boost in your immune system. With new illnesses coming out all the time (think of what went down in 2020), you get a leg up on others by the flood of oxygen.
Ozone (O³) comes from oxygen (O²). The extra oxygen in the body allows it to carry blood and nutrients to your tissues easier and faster. This helps with wound healing, decreasing inflammation, and fighting infections.
Another benefit is the release of stem cells after higher-dose treatments. These effects can last for months. This helps reduce or eliminate the need for certain medications.
What Are the Risk/Side Effects?
There are few risks associated with ozone therapy. If ozone is given in the vein, there is potential for an embolism - air bubbles in the bloodstream. Make sure the gas is fully dissolved before putting it back into your body.
There is also conflicting information as to whether it is irritating to the lungs. Inhaling high concentrations of ozone may cause irritation. Talk with your physician about the best course of treatment.
How Long Does It Take To Work?
Most of the patients will see improvements within three to four treatments. A full course usually involves six to ten treatments.
How Much Does Ozone Therapy Cost?
Health insurance companies don’t typically cover this type of therapy. Because of this, you will need to pay out-of-pocket.
The good news is you may be able to work out payment plans. Talk with the billing or front desk for more information.
The concept of ozone therapy is still a bit controversial. The FDA does not approve of its safety and effectiveness. Other studies show otherwise.
Ozone therapy uses ozone gas (0³) to heal wounds, increase blood flow, and support the immune system. Hospitals use it to sanitize surfaces because it deactivates bacteria, viruses, and fungal cells.
Typically it’s given three ways: in the vein, in the muscle, or directly onto the skin where the wound is. Patients usually notice improvement after three or four treatments.
Everyone responds to treatments differently. Talk with your doctor about finding the best treatment method for you.