Frequently Asked Questions
What is WellO2?
WellO2 is a lung-strengthening breathing exercise device that combines inspiratory and expiratory counter pressure breathing and the inhalation of warm steam. The device improves and maintains the condition of the respiratory system.
How does it work?
The device works so that the user performs respiratory exercises with the device. Initially, the user exhales into the device and then inhales the air back into their lungs from the device. The device creates a resistance for breathing and at the same time produces warm steam in the airways. The counter pressure breathing strengthens the respiratory organs while the warm steams opens and moisturizes the respiratory airways. In only one device there are more than one breathing and wellness methods.
What are the benefits of this device?
There are several ways that using the device can benefit you. Firstly, the strengthening of the respiratory system increases breathing power, which increases performance and facilitates everyday well-being. Secondly, the device opens up the airways and facilitates the clearance of mucus, making it easier for people suffering from long-term or temporary stuffiness to feel relief from their breathing difficulties. Thirdly, the warm steam produced by the device heats and moisturizes the airways, which is usually perceived as pleasant. For people using their voice for work, this helps to open and maintain the voice while strengthening the muscles that are important for sound formation. Breathing exercise is a form of exercise that activates the body's muscles and maintains their condition. As a result, people who exercise actively can get an extra boost in their performance.
Why should I buy this device?
One seldom pays attention to their breathing, unless for some reason it deviates from what is normal. There are many reasons why breathing can weaken, either intermittently or more permanently. We all get one to three seasonal colds in a year. Asthma and COPD affect 5%-10% of the population, varying according to the country. Up to 10% of the global population smokes. Shallow breathing, due to inactivity or poor ergonomics may cause inefficient breathing. Ageing often causes weakened breathing. In addition, lack of exercise weakens muscle strength. Athletes desire stronger respiratory muscles. Poor indoor and outdoor air quality can cause irritation and dryness in the respiratory airways. So, in every family there are several reasons to get the WellO2 device. In addition, the device can be used by several people because it comes with interchangeable personal parts and a cleaning program to improve hygiene.
What materials have been used for making the device and where is it made?
Bisphenol-free Tritan plastic is used. The nasal mask that comes with the device is made of silicone. The products are made in Europe.
From where I can buy the device?
You can buy the device from our webshop www.wello2.com or in German-speaking areas from: https://www.amazon.de/WellO2-Atemtrainer-Care-Nasenmaske-Verl%C3%A4ngerungsschlauch/dp/B075GWPB7T
Have there been made any medical studies about WellO2?
Yet any studies about WellO2 and effects of using it have not been made. However, there have been made many researches separately about effects of counter pressure breathing and steam breathing with different breathing problems. Here is a list of some references:
1. Tyrrell D., et al. Local hyperthermia benefits natural and experimental common colds. 1989, BMJ. 298:1280-3
2. Conti C., et al. Antiviral effect of hyperthermic treatment in rhinovirus infection. Antimicrob Agents Chemother, 1999;43(4):822-9.
3. Sebastian L., et al. The effect of local hyperthermia on allergen-induced nasal congestion and mediator release. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1993, 92:850-6.
4. Desrosiers M. et al. Treatment with hot, humid air reduces the nasal response to allergen challenge. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1997, 99:77-86.
5. Foxman et al. Temperature-dependent innate defence against the common cold virus limits viral replication at warm temperature in mouse airway cells. PNAS, 2015, vol 112, no: 3.
6. Jing J.C. et al. Scientific REPORTS | 7: 8522 | DOI:10.1038/s41598-017-08968-x. Visualization and Detection of Ciliary Beating Pattern and Frequency in the Upper Airway using Phase Resolved Doppler Optical Coherence Tomography 2017.
7. Vora S.U. et. al. Effect of Steam Inhalation on Mucociliary Activity in Patients of Chronic Pulmonary Disease. Indian J Chest Dis Allied Sci, 1993, 35 (1), 31-4 Jan-Mar .
8. Pick HJ., et al. P25 Inspiratory muscle training (IMT) for adults discharged from hospital with community acquired pneumonia (CAP) – a feasibility study. Thorax, 2018, Vol. 73, Issue Suppl 4.
9. Björkqvist M., et al. Bottle-blowing in Hospital-treated Patients with Community-acquired Pneumonia. J Scand Inf. Dis. 1997, 29/1.
Questions about usage of WellO2
I have a serious illness. Can I use the device?
Do not use the device if you have:
- Eardrum disease or damage
- Recent surgery (eye, abdominal, or chest cavity)
Consult your physician if you have have any of the following conditions:
- Asthma exacerbation
- Acute airway infection with fever
- Any undiagnosed lung disease
- The final stages of pregnancy
- Tendency for nosebleeds
- Severe heart disease
- Recent infarction or pulmonary embolism
- Very high blood pressure
Does steam inhalation prevent diseases?
The health effects of hot steam have been previously studied. Among others, it has been found that sauna bathing lowers risk of respiratory infections. (E. Ernest, E. Pecho, P. Wirtz, & T. Saredeth. 1989) Reliable distribution of steam into airways has not been investigated previously due to lack of such devices. Therefore, the effects of warm steam have been studied by inhaling steam above boiling kettle. This open system does not allow adequate control of the steam temperature, thus hampering the results. It has been found that some viruses are heat sensitive. For example, the rhinovirus, the most common cause of common colds, begins to lose its ability to replicate at 42 ℃ . With the WellO2 device, the warm steam can be applied directly to the nasal mucosa by using a nasal mask, whereby the surface temperature of the nasal mucosa rises controllably to above 42 ℃. Warm steam triggers a hyperthermic reaction in the nose. This activates defence mechanisms in the epithelium limiting replication of some heat-sensitive viruses.
Can Coronavirus be killed with the steam?
Some viruses are more heat-sensitive than others, such as rhinovirus. According to current knowledge, coronavirus can withstand high temperatures. These temperatures are likely to be above human tolerance to inactivate it. The temperature choices in WellO2 are safe to use.
Can WellO2 transmit the virus infection deeper into the lungs?
Virus can inhabit the mucosa for quite some time without infecting the underlying epithelium if the mucous membranes are intact. Any particulate matter such as viruses usually are pushed outward of the airways by the ciliary function. WellO2 can thus assist in removing potential pathogens out of your airways.
Can WellO2 be used by the persons in coronavirus risk group?
Belonging into the risk group does not limit the use of the device. If you have only mild symptoms, you may use the device normally. If you get severe symptoms or you are in the recovery, consult your attending doctor before using the device. WellO2 may speed up recovery.
Is the use of WellO2 safe during coronavirus epidemics?
Nobody knows exactly how the virus behaves and this topic has not yet been investigated. However, we have a lot of user experiences with the WellO2 device to treat the symptoms of other respiratory infections. There are some researches on counter pressure breathing and steam inhalation in the treatment of pneumonia and common cold. In general, the use of WellO2 in mild feverless respiratory tract infections is safe and has no restrictions. However, in severe respiratory infections, extra stress should be avoided; even though, the use of the device during the fever-free recovery phase may be beneficial but should be based on medical advice. If the use of the device aggravates the symptoms or causes pain or dyspnoea, it should not be used.
If I have acquired a coronavirus infection, when the use of WellO2 should be avoided?
We do not recommend using WellO2 in any severe respiratory or pulmonary infections. The use of the device during the fever-free recovery phase may be beneficial but should be based on medical advice. When you feel yourself well and healthy, you can use the device normally. If the use of the device aggravates the symptoms or causes pain or dyspnoea, it should not be used.
Is inhalation of the steam safe?
Steam inhalation has been part of the clinical trials with no severe side effects. Neither steam generated by the WellO2 has been found to cause adverse effects. A few asthmatics may feel steam uncomfortable and therefore should not use WellO2 with steaming feature.
Can WellO2 be used during pneumonia?
It is not recommended to use WellO2 in diseases caused by the severe respiratory infections. Do not perform any muscle training during pneumonia. If you are hospitalised, you may discuss about use of counter pressure breathing with your doctor. During feverless recovery, breathing muscle exercise with very low intensity (setting 0) according to your doctor’s instructions may speed up recovery. When you feel yourself well, you can start using WellO2 normally.
I don't have any respiratory difficulties, why should I use WellO2?
Everyone sometimes suffers from symptoms that cause airway irritation. The WellO2 device is a non-medicated aid for these respiratory problems. WellO2 can enhance the muscular strength of the respiratory muscles and the auxiliary respiratory muscles and thus improve lung function. Many users find that breathing with WellO2 before exercise opens the airways and improves oxygen uptake. Stress makes the breathing shallow. WellO2 breathing improves breathing and slows down breathing frequency, thereby relieving stress symptoms. Shallow breathing adversely affects body position. Good respiratory muscles and proper breathing techniques improve posture, increase sternal mobility and improve abdominal muscular strength.
How WellO2 can alleviate allergy?
No clinical studies on alleviation of allergy has yet been executed with WellO2 device. This trial is in the clinical pipeline. Many users feel that steam reduces airway irritation. Steam is known to help in mucus clearance which also alleviates coughing. Local hyperthermia is known to inhibit histamine release from the mast cells which reduces irritation. Steam causes local hyperthermia in airways thus alleviating symptoms mediated by histamine. Nasal mask inhalation of steam with WellO2, moisturises mucous membranes, reduces swelling and removes impurities from the nasal cavity.
Can COPD patient use WellO2?
COPD causes very uneven and inefficient distribution of air in lungs. Counter pressure breathing is commonly used for opening small bronchial tubes to improve ventilation. COPD is commonly associated with mucus accumulation in airways. The steam inhalation with WellO2 makes mucous membranes more fluidic and helps clearing mucus from the airways. COPD is often associated with muscle weakness, which is why it is important to maintain muscular fitness and to strengthen the respiratory muscles. It is as important as medication. WellO2 can be used to strengthen respiratory muscles. In severe chronic pulmonary disease, you should always consult the attending physician regarding the use of counter pressure breathing. If your doctor recommends you a water-PEEP bottle, you can also use the WellO2. Start always with the lowest resistance.
Does WellO2 help in sleep apnoea?
WellO2 has not yet been studied for the treatment of sleep apnoea. The research topic is interesting and is part the clinical portfolio. WellO2 strengthens the respiratory muscles, including the muscles of the upper pharynx. Sleep apnoea is mostly caused by obstruction of the upper respiratory tract. Many users have reported that the snoring has disappeared when the WellO2 is used regularly. Snorers often breathe orally, which causes dryness of upper the airways during the night. Oral breathing also weakens the respiratory muscles. WellO2 device can moisturize the airways and reduce the problem of dryness, especially in the morning.
Can the pregnant use WellO2?
WellO2 has not yet been investigated with the pregnant. Many pregnant women use counter pressure breathing to alleviate their respiratory symptoms. Pregnancy and the developing foetus complicate the breathing by immobilising diaphragm and chest. Also, posture of the body changes in pregnancy. This appears as shallow breathing. WellO2 can mobilise diaphragm and chest, strengthen respiratory muscles, and moisturise mucous membranes in airways. During the last semester, strong pushing force should be avoided. If using WellO2 doesn’t feel unpleasant, you may continue using it during your pregnancy.
Can WellO2 be used by the children?
Electrical equipment may be used independently by persons over 12 years of age. Under the supervision of an adult, younger people than that can use the device safely. WellO2 can be safely used by healthy children when they are able to breathe according to adult’s instructions. Children should start with the lowest resistance (0) and the lowest temperature (one-point button, i.e. +45 ℃). If your child has a lung disease or any other underlying condition, it is recommended to discuss the use of WellO2 with the attending physician. To become familiar with the device, it is recommended that also the healthy practises with the device and prepare themselves for the possible respiratory complications.
Why the use of WellO2 is denied for some?
Since WellO2 is not a medical device, its use in the alleviation and care of any disease is not marketable, and thus is a matter of medical assessment by health care personnel. Steam has no known counter indications, but the counter pressure breathing is limited in the medical conditions listed in the user’s manual. Absolute counter indications are pneumothorax, open surgery or traumatic wounds in face, thorax or abdomen, and those listed in the user’s manual. Restrictions are to make sure that the device is not risking the user for any possible adverse effects.
What kind of respiratory exercises should I do?
When using it at first, it is recommended to start exercising with the lowest steam temperature (•) and the lowest respiratory resistance (position 0). The idea of respiratory exercise is to take turns exhaling and inhaling, either continuously or as a single exhalation and inhalation. More respiratory exercises instructions can be seen here (click).
How often should I use the device?
During the first month, we recommend using the device 1-3x/day, according, however, to how you feel. After 1 month, 2-3 times per week is a good amount to maintain respiratory health, but if you are very stuffy or have other breathing symptoms, you can use the device more frequently. Especially those suffering from respiratory difficulties would benefit from regular respiratory exercise. Only regular exercise guarantees good results, as breathing works with muscles that are similar to all the skeletal muscles. Exercise strengthens the muscles and makes them more durable. Mucus that is accumulated in the respiratory airways should be cleared regularly, as it increases the obstruction in the airways that acts as a breeding ground for viruses and bacteria. The removal of mucus is called respiratory hygiene. If home remedies don’t help with the mucus removal, or if you suffer from a continuous cough because of mucus, WellO2 is a good device to help to support the removal treatments and to soothe the cough.
Can a daily use of WellO2 cause water in the lungs?
No, that is not possible. The amount of fluid in one training session with the WellO2 device is 0.2 ml. The vapor formed from this amount of fluid binds to the mucous membranes of the upper respiratory tract under the effect of heat, i.e., to the nasal or pharyngeal mucosa, depending on the method of training. Even if you exercise many times a day, for example 6-8 times a day while recovering from a severe lung infection, the amount of fluid is not so great that it would accumulate water in our lungs.
Water or various saline solutions are commonly used to moisten the airways in hospitals as well as in home care, for example when treating sleep apnea. For the treatment of sleep apnea, a C-PAP device is used, which is used continuously overnight. The water tank of this device carries about 5 dl of water, which is inhaled into the lungs during sleep, usually overnight, depending on the chosen temperature.
In addition, for example, inhaled drugs are administered in a hospital with a drug nebulizer, to which, in addition to the drug, about 4 ml / dose of fluid is added and the drug is usually administered in 4-6 doses / day. When bathing in a sauna, you also throw water on the stove in the sauna, where the steam water, which is usually several deciliters, evaporates into the breathing air. In none of the above situations does water accumulate in our lungs.
Questions about maintenance and hygiene of WellO2
Can WellO2 transmit coronavirus infection?
No if you maintain the cleaning programme as advised in the user’s manual. The cleaning program raises the temperature to 98 degrees, whereby the it kills microbes in the device and its parts. After carrying out the cleaning program, the water is poured out. Use always clean and drinkable and replace it every for every use.
Should WellO2 be cleaned after each use during epidemics?
During epidemics, it is recommended that a cleaning program is performed after each use. It is always a good practise to rinse the personal parts after each use.
What should I do if I can't get the lid off the cleaning basket?
If you are starting to use the device for the first time, we recommend that you run the device's special cleaning program before detaching the components. Warm steam makes the plastic parts more flexible and therefore easier to remove. After this, remove the lid and the cleaning basket. See the instructions here (click).
What should I do if I can’t get the adjustment ring out of the breathing regulator?
If you are starting to use the device for the first time, we recommend that you run the device's special cleaning program before detaching the components. The warm steam makes the plastic parts more flexible and therefore easier to remove. After this, remove the resistance ring from the regulator. See the instructions here (click).
What should I do if the device does not work?
At first, check the following:
-The power base cord is plugged in and the device is placed evenly on the base.
-There is cold water in the device between the Min and Max lines.
-You have pressed the temperature button (•, •• or •••) for about 1 to 2 seconds or the cleaning program button for about 3 seconds until the button indicator lights up and the device makes a signal noise.
-If the device does not turn on even after you have followed these instructions, contact our customer support by email email@example.com
What do I do if a component of my device is broken?
If the component broke in normal use and has not become broken by, for example, being dropped, please contact our customer support by email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is the lifespan of the device?
The lifespan of the device depends on the frequency of its use, but it should last for 3 years even with frequent use. We grant a 2-year warranty for the product that applies to the device, but not the interchangeable components.
Does the device have a warranty?
Yes, the WellO2 device has a 24-month warranty.
Is the device for personal use or can more than one use the same device?
The WellO2 device can be used by several people. The package comes with three different-coloured mouthpieces to help different users to recognize their own mouthpieces. The other components of the device are suitable for shared use.
How do I clean the device?
After each use, all components are detached from the device and the device and components are rinsed under running water. The components are then placed to air-dry. You can also clean the device with the device’s cleaning program. Instructions for the cleaning program can be found in the user manual. It is best to run the cleaning program after every fifth use and not more than after every tenth use, before the first time using it, and whenever the device has been used by another person.
How do I make sure that the device is clean if someone else has used it?
The device's cleaning program should be run every time the device has been used by another person. This will ensure that the device is hygienic.
How often do I need to change the water in the device?
The water must be poured out after each use, because the water acts as a breeding ground for bacteria. The device and its components are then rinsed and put to air-dry, and fresh cold water should be added to the device the next time you use it.
Can I use tap water in the device?
Tap water can be used in the device if the water is drinkable.
I would like to make a complaint about the product, how can I do it?
Please contact our customer support by email email@example.com.