Nebulizer: How to choose the best model in 2021?
Today we are going to talk about the nebulizer, a device used to treat respiratory problems by taking medication directly to the lung through a mist of particles.
The coolest thing about the nebulizer is that it cures diseases quickly, is easy to use and can be taken anywhere, as it is a small, light and portable object. This device can be of two types: ultrasonic nebulizer or powered by compressed air.
The most modern models have several extra features such as a pivotable mask, timer, battery or USB cable operation and ultramodern systems with various levels of filtration and protection against odors and bacteria.
First, the most important
- The nebulizer is a device composed of a compressor, a hose, a nebulizer cup (reusable or disposable) and a mask. This equipment turns liquid medicines into mist.
- There are two types of nebulizers: compressed air and ultrasonic. Both models have the same objective: to carry the medication to the lung through the fog that the equipment produces.
- There are several models of nebulizers but most are made by three strong manufacturers in this type of equipment: G-Tech, Soniclear and NS. Both brands produce nebulizers of both types.
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Best nebulizer models: Our favorites
Now, we will present the best models of nebulizer, or inhaler, as it is also known. For this Ranking we select the products that are best evaluated by consumers, those that have more resources and that therefore have excellent cost-benefits.
- Nebudes G-Tech Ultrasonic Nebulizer
- Minisonic Soniclear Portable Ultrasonic Nebulizer
- Nebcom V G-Tech Inhaler and Nebulizer
- Nebcom IV Nebulizer Inhaler G-Tech
- Mechanical Inhaler / Nebulizer Plus Ng Soniclear
Nobody deserves to be sick, be it a passing cold or a crisis of some more serious and chronic illness like asthma and bronchitis. But with the arrival of winter, temperatures drop, the weather becomes drier, viruses start to circulate and diseases appear.
The good news is that with the help of some devices you can prevent or even treat these conditions quite efficiently. Use humidifiers to make the air in your home more humid and nebulizers to treat the airways with serum (prevention) or medicine (treatment).
What is a nebulizer and where to use it?
In the autumn and winter seasons, the weather gets drier and as a result, respiratory diseases start to appear, caused by adverse climatic conditions caused by the lack of rain, pollution and cold.
When the relative humidity is below 40% there is greater difficulty in breathing, it can give headaches, stimulate attacks of rhinitis and sinusitis, congestion of the nostrils, cause an allergic cough and dry skin, eyes and mouth.
To avoid the inconvenience caused by dry weather you can use humidifiers and air purifiers. If the disease is already present, you can treat it with a nebulizer, either for hospital or home use.
The nebulizer is the device that transforms the dose of a liquid medicine placed in its own container in cold vapor, which is inhaled through a rubber or plastic mask that can be made for children and adults.
The steam that this device produces is very good for unblocking the nose, relieving cough and curing simple diseases like flu, colds and inflammation in the lungs and bronchi, without causing side effects.
The nebulizer can also be used to treat more serious and even chronic diseases such as asthma and bronchitis.
In the case of asthma and bronchitis it is even more important that the treatment is agile, because when the medicine is administered orally, it needs to be processed by the body and takes longer to reach the respiratory system.
It should be noted that the use of the nebulizer can, in addition to treating, prevent some respiratory diseases, especially for those who live daily with the pollution of large cities.
One of the great benefits of the equipment is the ease of use and handling. It works continuously, there is no need to take breaks during the inhalation of medications. This device can also be used by people of all ages.
This appliance is for electrical use and works connected to an outlet. It is very quiet, so there is almost no noise while you are using it.
How to keep the nebulizer and parts?
For your nebulizer to last a long time, you need to take some basic precautions:
- Never turn the nebulizer on before putting the medication on (this can cause it to burn).
- Although you can share the device, never borrow your face mask.
- Always pay attention to the correct dose of medication, some nebulizers have a dosage meter, others do not (in this case, measure the amount before pouring).
- After use and before storing, sanitize the container where you put the medicine. You can use a little neutral detergent and use a damp or alcohol-soaked cloth to clean the exterior.
- It is important to wait for it to dry well before storing (especially the tube that takes the medication from the device to the mask), to avoid mold.
- The mask, nozzle and tube you must pack in a plastic bag so that these parts do not get dust.
What are the advantages and disadvantages of a nebulizer?
Because it is a health-related product, it has many more advantages than disadvantages. In addition to taking the medication directly to the lung, being faster and more effective, the use of the nebulizer is also very versatile, being useful in several diagnoses.
Check now the main advantages and disadvantages of the nebulizer:
- Takes the medicine directly to the lung, ensuring quick results
- It serves to treat both common and chronic diseases
- The ultrasonic nebulizer can be used with the patient sitting or lying down
- The compressed air nebulizer works with any type of medicine
- The compressed air powered nebulizer is noisy
- The ultrasonic nebulizer does not allow the use of corticosteroids
- The compressed air nebulizer takes longer to operate
What are the different types of nebulizer that exist?
The nebulizer, also known as an inhaler, can be of two types: the compressed air nebulizer (simpler model) or the ultrasonic nebulizer. Both devices serve to deliver medication to the lungs through the cold vapor they produce.
The big difference between the two models is that the ultrasonic nebulizer only works with saline and bronchodilators, while with the conventional model it can be used with all types of drugs.
Get to know the mode of operation and the main characteristics of each of these models below:
Jet or conventional nebulizer
The compressed air nebulizer works by creating an air flow (jet of oxygen or compressed air) that is carried through the hose to a container for the deposit of the medicine with a meter.
To reach the container it goes through a small hole in the hose, causing a pressure drop and an increase in speed that causes an expansion. With this, the air sucks the liquid from the container and generates a mist formed by small particles.
The larger drops are barred and return to the medicine container, being reused whenever the air reaches the container where the medicine is deposited.
However, there is a loss of medication due to inhalation and expiration and in cases of mask misplacement. Very fast and short breaths take the medicine to the airways and nasal passages.
To make the ideal treatment using this device, the patient must inhale deeply and with an open mouth, as nasal breathing reduces the arrival of the product in the lung by 50%.
Due to its proven clinical efficacy and low cost, the compressed air nebulizer is still a widely used device in several countries.
The ultrasonic nebulizer works differently from the air-generating nebulizer model. This inhaler uses a piezoelectric crystal in its electrical circuits that is fed with electrical voltage, which makes it vibrate at a very high frequency.
This vibration turns the medication into an aerosol liquid that is taken to the patient through a hose by a small fan, similar to a computer fan. This fog is thinner and more uniform.
The finer the mist expelled by the nebulizer, the more easily the medicine will be absorbed by the lung, ensuring quick results.
With this device, nebulization becomes faster (about 10 minutes of treatment) and efficient, there is less loss of medication and it is ideal for expectoration, recovering a patient from an allergic crisis in just five minutes.
Another advantage is that nebulization can be done with the person sitting, lying down or standing, but it is important to note that doctors indicate that the treatment is more effective when the person is sitting, because when lying down they can accidentally ingest the secretion. .
The disadvantage of this model for the conventional one is that the price of the equipment is higher.
The MDI and Powder Inhaler
The inhaler can be of two types: the MDI, used to take controlled-dose medications and the dry powder inhaler.
MDI is very similar to an aerosol can, you just need to squeeze it and it drops the medicine in the right dose directly into your mouth. With the powdered inhaler, the person only needs to put the dose of the medicine in the container and inhale (also through the mouth) with a proper pout.
If you usually get a cold or flu and also have chronic diseases like asthma and bronchitis, the ideal is to buy a hybrid device, which is an inhaler and nebulizer at the same time.
But if you only want or can only purchase one of these devices, it is good to choose the model that best meets your needs. With that in mind, we prepared a table comparing the ultrasonic nebulizer to that of compressed air. Check out:
Another device that has been winning fans is the smart nebulizer, which combines the technologies of the two models mentioned above and has some advantages: it works with an active vibrating mesh technology called Nebzmart.
This device works even faster than the ultrasonic (six minutes, while the other takes ten), works with any type of medicine, is silent, there is no medicine left in the dispenser and is very easy to wash (no hose).
Another advantage is that this device is portable (really hand held) and works on battery or USB cable, making it easy to use in various environments, inside and outside the home.
How much does a nebulizer cost?
The price of a nebulizer varies according to the type of device (ultrasonic or compressed air), features and functionality. A good quality device powered by compressed air costs a little more than R $ 200, there are cheaper options for around R $ 130. Ultrasonic devices cost between R $ 150 and R $ 220.
Where to buy a nebulizer?
You can find models of nebulizers of both types (ultrasonic or compressed air), prices and brands in pharmacies.
You can also find models in department stores. If you prefer, you can buy such a device in the comfort of your home, through the internet in virtual stores such as Amazon.
We recommend Amazon, there you can compare models from various brands, read the evaluation and the score given by other consumers, compare prices and, best of all, receive the product in a few days.
Did you know that although the history of the creation of the nebulizer dates back to a long time ago, the device as we know it today was invented around the 1950s? In 1956, the use of a pressurized controlled dose nebulizer was reported.
The device quickly gained notoriety for being a practical and fast method with remarkable results. In 1965, Raymond Marcel G. Boucher patented an ultrasonic-style medication nebulizer.
Purchasing criteria: Factors for purchasing nebulizer models
Choosing the right nebulizer model is directly linked to your use of this device. The main difference between the compressed air and the ultrasonic nebulizer is that the first accepts any type of medication, while the second only accepts bronchodilators and serum.
In addition to the question of the medicine to be used (which is very important), some characteristics of the device must be observed when looking for a nebulizer. Are they:
- Particle size
- Mist intensity levels
- Filtration levels
- Serum reservoir
- Extra features
We will explain item by item so you don’t have any doubts. With this information you can do a more in-depth research and will surely choose the ideal product for you and your family.
The nebulizer forms a mist during inhalation, and although we don’t see it, it is made up of several particles. In order to reach the appropriate location (lungs), the particles must be very small.
When this particle is larger, it gets trapped in the airways before it reaches the lungs, causing an unwanted effect and rendering the treatment ineffective.
Only when the medicine reaches the lungs does it help to release the expelled secretion and begin to treat the infection.
Just to give you an idea, the ultrasonic nebulizer has microparticles smaller than five microns (1000 microns is the same as 1 mm).
Mist intensity levels
Most modern nebulizer devices have more than one level of mist intensity. The cool thing about having control of the jet is that it is easier to adapt the use for children and adults.
There are models with three levels of intensity, the softest can be used by babies or children. The most intense levels should be used by adults.
The jet flow is directly related to the size of the particles that reach the lung (as we said above, the smaller the better). The more the pressure and the air flow (mainly in the case of the compressed air device), the smaller the size of the particles generated.
The nebulizer is a device used to treat respiratory health, so it is essential that the quality of the air / jet that this device releases is free of bacteria and microbes, so some models have up to five levels of filtration.
Some models use Microban technology, a patented system that inhibits the presence of microorganisms and unpleasant odors in nebulizers. This technology also keeps the device cleaner.
The hose is the part that takes the medicine in mist form to the mask, so it is very important. Some models of nebulizer do not come with a hose, we suggest that you do not buy models like that.
Opt for equipment that comes with all the essential parts for operation and choose a model in which the hose is semi flexible and long, so you can be better accommodated when using the device, whether sitting or lying down.
The mask is the piece that will transfer the medicine in the form of mist that comes from the hose to your nose or directly to your mouth.
The ideal is to buy models in which the mask is flexible (made with a mixture of plastic and rubber) to avoid discomfort during use. Some models come with three types of mask: adult, children’s and mouth models.
There is even an articulating mask, which adapts to the shape of your face, becomes even more stable and is very comfortable because it doesn’t hurt your face.
But, regardless of the type of mask you wear, the most important thing is good placement. A study revealed that badly placed masks, only 2 cm away from the face, reduce the drug release by up to 85%, as the particles are dispersed along the sides of the piece.
The reservoir of serum and medication is a container that is inside the nebulizer. Give preference to models that come with disposable cups to put the medicine in the reservoir.
In addition to being more hygienic, they are more practical, as you will not need to clean the reservoir with water and mild soap after use, just remove the plastic cup and discard it.
Design is one of the most important factors when choosing a nebulizer device. With design we do not refer to more or less beautiful devices, but to those in which the way the piece was developed influences the way of using it.
Some nebulizers come in the form of a case with a lid , where the device itself can be used to store the mask after use. This makes it easier to use, as you don’t have to keep it in plastic bags.
There are also portable models , which are very practical to use, as they are smaller and lighter (some even come with handles). You can use them inside and outside the home and they work from batteries, USB cable and even vehicle adapters.
Finally, children’s nebulizers are developed to make treatment against respiratory diseases less hassle. Some have the shape of a teddy bear, an elephant, are colored or have an animal-shaped piece for the child to interact while inhaling.
The timer is a very useful feature in a nebulizer / inhaler. With it you can program the timer function for up to 12 minutes of inhalation, so the nebulizer acts without you having to pay attention. For those who are lying down, this feature is very useful.
Much is said about a certain delicacy that nebulizers (mainly or ultrasonic) have in relation to the burning of the device. An interesting feature to protect the device from this risk is the thermal protector that prevents the device from overheating.
Choose to buy a nebulizer from a well-known and renowned brand. Also choose a model with a warranty certificate, because if the device has any manufacturing defect, you have the opportunity to exchange it for another one.
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