Welcome to this forum. BTW, I too am from southern Oregon; living in Ashland these days.
I'm sort of transitioning over to this board from the ProHealth board where I posted fairly frequently for the past two years. I'll paste below one of my responses to an HBOT inquiry from that other board.
I would love to do HBOT if I could afford it. From what I've read, and with my history of a head injury, I feel I could benefit greatly from it.
I asked another member here about her experience with HBOT, and she gave a reply I thought you might find of interest. I'll paste it below.
Elisa, I noticed you had a brain injury from CO exposure. I don't know if you're aware of it, but HBOT has been used very successfully for stroke victims who have experienced brain injury. Apparently, many of brain cells affected by a stroke actually do not die, but go into somewhat of a coma (can't think of the right term).
These brain cells can remain "dormant" for many years, not functional but not dead either. Apparently, HBOT has the ability to force higher levels of oxygen into these cells and bring them back to life. The research I've done into HBOT reveals some pretty amazing things. I truly think it will be a mainstream therapy in the future.
I've also heard that if you can get a stroke victim into an HBOT within something like 12-48 hours, there is almost never any permanent neurological damage. Makes you wonder why it isn't being used more extensively. I'm guessing it will as babyboomers retire and start having their strokes.
Good luck if you get a chance to try this. I would encourage you to keep researching it. Some fascinating stories out there.
Response RE: Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy
You asked about my hyperbaric chamber, which is my lifesaver. Honestly, if I skip about 10 days, I start to feel a kind of toxic-unto-death feeling that is just horrible. One hour session keeps that at bay for about 10 days and makes me feel more whole, energetic, and has done good things for my digestion, and I think somewhat saved my brain )))).
I have my own home chamber. This is extremely convenient but its also an expensive item. However many chiropractors and holistic docs carry them these days. To find someone in your area you might google around or you can call oxyhealth, the firm that makes them, in California and ask for a referral.
I would highly recommend it. I went to look at your profile, which I remember reading a while back (I admire your spiritual overview and that pic near Moab is beautiful). I can tell you hyperbaric has really had a tremendously beneficial effect on the wired/tired/toxic feeling and on headaches. It sounds like you suffer from this and I think you are on the right track thinking it might help you.
I posted on lymenet about the comparative merits of ozone therapy and hyperbaric, and so far, based on my own research and what I've heard from others that have tried both, ozone not only comes out as a clear winner (esp. for those of us with high infectious/toxic loads) but seems to be more affordable in the long run.
I have purchased an Ionizer and with it is an attached hose that leads to a large plastic bag which I climb into Now I am told this is equivalent to a hyperbaric chamber. My homeoptah recommended this German designed machine and I went to see the manufacturer and heard his remarkable story of how he was partially lame due to a serious fall. He imported one from Germany and lay in it for about 8 hrs a day for 9 wks and now he has only about 10% pain...so he started to manufacture them here.
I have been sleeping so poorly since May and feeling dreadful. Started using it Oct 27 and the week before Xmas I suddenly had a new lease of life....I could leave the house and go shopping. Nothing else changed then only new digestive enzymes and D3 and a probiotic a week before. He did tell me I would sleep very well. I lay in it for about 3 hrs a day. Who knows?
Susan, I'd be very curious to know the name of the German machine you have, it sounds worth looking into (I also have a friend with Lyme's and a bro-in-law who is having problems with peripheral neuropathies. The neuropathies might be a different kettle of fish, but I'm thinking if it's also helpful for strokes, it might be good for a wide spectrum of neurological crap (to use the technical term)).
An ionizer may be useful but it is not the equivalent to a hyberbaric chamber, that sounds like hype.
All tissues need oxygen to heal, the more oxygen available the better. Oxygen at pressure is forced deeper into the tissues than otherwise so it can heal better. Broken bones and wounds heal much faster.
I am very neurologically affected but hyperbaric oxygen has prevented deterioration. I was getting much worse each year but in the thirteen years since I started HO2 I have stabilised.
The doctor who introduced HO2 for MS believes that anyone who has neurological symptoms should start immediately to prevent damage accumulating. I think it would be great for everyone with ME and possibly CFS if it was more widely available.
The only down side is that it can be uncomfortable sitting upright for an hour and people with ear problems can be forced to stop.
I was told it was HBOT, the guy seems genuine and my homeopath works along side him. She wants me to feed a small amount of oxygen into the ionizer.......Oxygen supplier came out and was not happy due to saftey issues.....have to get back to Ionizer guy to check this out. Homeopath runs oxygen into hers. She used to Parkinsons and shake and now she does not. Apparently HBOT is amazing for neurological problems. Got an amazing book about HBOT from the library....cures lots of stuff.
Sunday.......I am very tired right now so will email PM to you later....waiting news for 10 wk premature grandbaby to arrive.
i think it helps through increasing cerebral perfusion as parts of our brain have poor perfusion. If hyperbaric chamber helps go for it but i think maybe pricey. I think there are other natural alternatives like maybe ginkgo and vasodilators etc that may help with this and cheaper. I dont think its the cure all but it helps. As for cheneys oxygen toxicity, antioxidants help with this and also poor brain perfusion can cause hypoxia to certain areas and damage these nuerological areas. so i think its a worth thing to look into, but its a part of the picture.
Not sure I'm looking at his latest theory but in 2009 he was saying that PWCs bodies may find oxygen toxic. All the symptoms we have would be various ways the body is adjusting to that fact in order to prevent something worse (death?) from happening and accepting the side effects (our symptoms) of these adjustments as the cost. He found studies that showed the POTS symptoms we have could be replicated in healthy controls by forcing a low oxygen atmosphere. When finding that oxygen deprivation caused our type of POTS in normal people, he tried to add oxygen to PWCs to try to fix us. Within less than a minute we got significantly and measurably worse.
The body has at least four main ways to combat oxygen toxicity and if you combat it's efforts to save you in one of those pathways using whatever treatment, it will use one or more other ways to save you from oxygen toxicity. This seems consistent with observation of various treatments helping for a short while only.