It is known to all the scuba divers that decompression sickness is a great danger while diving in the open water. Decompression sickness is known as “the bends”, “divers disease” and “caisson disease”. If you are interested in scuba diving but do not know much about decompression sickness, before going for scuba diving, you must know everything about it. A personal hyperbaric chamber can help the divers to recover from decompression sickness. But before going to this discussion, let’s know more about the sickness.
What is this decompression sickness?
Decompression sickness is associated with Henry’s law. As per Henry’s law, under pressure, a huge amount of gas can be absorbed by a liquid. So far as scuba diving is concerned, a diver inhales nitrogen from the air that is filled in a tank known as a scuba tank. And the liquid that absorbs the nitrogen is the blood of the diver. Expelling nitrogen from the human body due to exhaling through the skin is a natural activity. When you are breathing compressed air during your diving session, the absorbed nitrogen gets stored in the fatty tissues and the blood due to the ambient water pressure.
When the pressure surrounding you decreases, the nitrogen comes out of the tissue. As the pressure is reduced very soon, the nitrogen starts creating bubbles in the tissues and the blood stream instead of being exhaled, due to decompression sickness. A dive computer can help you to avoid decompression sickness. In order to combat decompression sickness, administering 100 percent oxygen is very important that can be provided via a personal hyperbaric chamber.
What is personal hyperbaric chamber?
Before going to the hyperbaric chamber, you should understand what it is. A hyperbaric chamber can be regarded as a large container that is made to hold gases or liquids at a pressure. In this chamber, 100 percent oxygen is supplied and after supplying the oxygen, the technicians raise the internal temperature by an air compressor. A pressure chamber is attached to the individual airlock chamber with hatches in order to permit the patients to enter and exit. The airlocks should be pressurized independently to assure the pressure in the main chamber. Generally, an intercom or walkie-talkie is used to communicate with anyone in the chamber.
How does it combat decompression sickness?
The hyperbaric therapy is able to increase the partial pressure of the oxygen in the tissues. The cells can repair themselves better when they are exposed to a higher content of oxygen through the blood. The design of hyperbaric chamber is same in most of the cases. But one can use it in different ways. The personal hyperbaric chamber can help the scuba divers in two ways such as:
1. Decompression chamber:
A decompression chamber is a hyperbaric chamber mostly used by the surface-supplied divers who need to stop the decompression as early as possible. This kind of chamber helps the divers to finish their decompression in the chamber, not the underwater. In order to get this thing done, decompression chamber can be submersible underwater. The hatch of the chamber should open into a moon pool chamber. In most of the cases, the hatch opens into the underwater airlock in a way that is similar to the ways usually used in submarines.
2. Recompression chamber:
A recompression chamber is also a kind of hyperbaric chamber that treats or prevents the decompression sickness of the scuba divers. It has been seen that when the divers remain at pressure, the absorbed nitrogen that the diver is breathing in the compressed underwater air shows no sign of complications. But when the pressure around the divers decreases, the nitrogen comes out of the tissues as it has been stated earlier. When a recompression chamber is made pressurized, it starts re-stimulating the pressure conditions to create the atmosphere of the underwater. When the patient is taken under pressure once again, the pressure creates the nitrogen bubbles in order to make it soluble. In this way, it helps to stop the bubbles from escaping through the tissues and the bloodstream as well.
A Final takeaway:
From this discussion, it is clear that a personal hyperbaric chamber is really essential for scuba diving. Decompression sickness is really a dangerous threat to the scuba divers. Don’t be surprised to know that decompression sickness can lead one to death in its worst form. Therefore, the divers should always try to avoid such a situation by following a safe ascent rate. If decompression sickness is a great concern for you just like the other scuba divers, then you should always try to ascend slowly. Don’t forget to wear a dive computer having an ascent alarm.