Today was Bryce’s first day of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy. It was our first step on the road along which we will have 60 consecutive sessions, 5 days a week.
After a quick checkup of our vitals, we were ready to take the dive. We had his current favourite movie, Robot Repairman from the Backyardigans series, playing while we were in the chamber.
At first Bryce struggled with the oxygen mask. He seemed uncomfortable and unfamiliar, but after seeing me wear mine for a while he decided it might be ok to try, and after that he didn’t take it off until we were done. He also had to put on a pair of noise cancelling ear muffs to reduce the sound of the pressurization of the chamber. He has some sensitivity issues with his ears.
He was a little nervous about the whole experience at first, asking to go to the car. He was saying, “Done!” “Finished!” but eventually he turned into his negotiating self with the first this, then that routine: “First HBOT, then game,” or “First HBOT, then car.” We settled on, “First HBOT, then Slurpee.”
He seemed to be good with the pressurization of the tank, and once we were in the middle of it he was waving to the HBOT technician, and giving the ‘OK’ signal. He even gave the ‘Come up (or out)’ signal when the session was coming to an end. The session was long, slowly pressurizing, and decompressing the tank, and we felt we did pretty good.
Afterwards we went to 7-11 for a Slurpee, as we negotiated in the tank, and ultimately what Bryce refers to as “a Wii boxing fortress hotdog.” (I don’t know why he calls it that, but it’s a hot dog.)
It was a good first session. Bryce familiarized himself with the procedures, and my bet is by the fifth session, he will be a pro. We will be documenting this whole HBOT experience and sharing pictures, videos, and reporting everything we can on our blog, Facebook, and Twitter.
To learn more about Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) to treat autism, please visit Vitalia Health Care.