All Things Ozone

As I write, I am traveling back from Reno, Nevada, where Tammy and I just completed our Ozone Therapy certification with Frank Shallenberger, MD, the American Ozone Academy and U.S. Pioneer of this natural, safe, and EFFECTIVE treatment. Ozone therapy is based on the fundamental principle that as the body ages, tissues lose their ability to utilize oxygen effectively. This, and ONLY this phenomenon, is responsible for what we call “aging.”

Declining oxygen utilization happens at the level of the mitochondria. These are the “energy-producing” parts of each of the cells in our body that enable the cell to have enough resources to function. These mitochondria are the most plentiful tissues that use the most energy, such as the brain, eyes, heart, gastrointestinal tract, muscles, and nervous system.

Amazing that these are the tissues that tend to decline as we age. Normally, oxygen goes into the mitochondria and ends up as ATP energy and water. When the mitochondria stop utilizing oxygen effectively to make energy, they are forced to do so anaerobically (meaning, without oxygen) in a slower process that produces lactic acid instead of water.

As we lose the ability to use oxygen at the mitochondrial level, we see that our body parts don’t work because cells are not producing enough energy. We have a lot more aches and pains because of lactic acid production. We become functionally dehydrated (no water production from the mitochondria.

What’s missing here? Oxygen! How can you deliver oxygen back to the tissues and stimulate healing? Ozone therapy!

Besides delivering oxygen to the tissues, the ozone can be prodding the immune system into action through the same mechanism. Those of you who have worked with me have heard me use the analogy that the immune system should be like a ninja. When we are exposed to an infection, before we are even aware we have been exposed, the immune system should sneak in, quietly kill the infection, and leave without ever letting us know it’s been active.

Unfortunately for most of us, our immune systems are tired and kind of clunky, more like Bigfoot than a ninja. When we get an infection, we get long, drawn-out colds or “immune response” that takes a long time to do its job. Worse, if the immune system lets something BIG by the goalie, let’s say Lyme, Epstein-Barr, candida, strep, or any of the other nasty bugs we see, cause a lot of problems.

We can have decades of chronic inflammation without EVER clearing the infection. In this situation, it’s not enough to kill the bugs. We also have to kick the immune system into gear, so the bugs don’t come back. Here is where ozone comes in for the treatment of both acute and chronic infections.

Ozone first made an appearance in Europe in the 1800s. Werner von Siemens, the founding father of Electrical Engineering, figured out how to generate the gas that appears after a lightning strike with an electrode. An ozone generator essentially “squashes” oxygen molecules (O2) together so that they temporarily become ozone (O3), an unstable, highly potent, supercharged form of oxygen.

Though most of us are familiar with ozone in an industrial sense, it has been known since the early days that the gas is a potent disinfectant and anti-microbial tool. It was Nikola Tesla who patented the first ozone generator in 1896. He figured out a way to “trap” the gas in olive oil to be used as a skin treatment for infections.

At the beginning of the 20th century, Dr. Noble Eberhart of Loyola Chicago University began using ozone to treat tuberculosis, anemia, whooping cough, bronchitis, allergies, asthma, pneumonia, diabetes, gout, syphilis, and other afflictions. From there, the technology spread out to other countries in Europe and the Caribbean. Ozone is now used throughout the world in both industrial and medical applications.

It is heavily utilized in countries with socialized medicine where doctors are encouraged to use safe, efficacious treatments that are also cost-effective, without as much reliance on pharmaceutical medications as we have in the capitalism-heavy medical industry in the United States. Though ozone gas is an irritant to the lungs, the amount of ozone that escapes into the air to be breathed is carefully minimized in the medical setting. Also, the room is well ventilated.

Should you care to investigate the science behind ozone, there are over 3,000 published peer-reviewed scientific studies from around the world at the American Academy of Ozone Therapy’s website, aaot.us. This is an evidence-based medical therapy underutilized in the United States due to the dominance of conventional medicine by the pharmaceutical industry. Let’s see what it can do. Ozone can be administered in many ways.

Below is a list of applications & conditions each is useful for:

  • Nasal – Sinus infections, dental/gingival issues, common colds/flu, fatigue, brain fog, memory decline
  • Ear – Ear infections. Imagine never having to use antibiotics for a child’s ear infection again!
  • Nervous System – Dementia, Parkinson’s, MS, and other pathologies.
  • Rectal – IBS, Crohn’s, Colitis, chronic candida, infections, and constipation. This method is great for delivering a large amount of oxygen to the entire body. It is often utilized by athletes to oxygenate the body to improve muscle function and those with chronic long-term systemic infections, like Lyme and Epstein-Barr.
  • Vaginal – Chronic yeast or bacterial infections, atrophic, post-menopausal vaginitis, interstitial cystitis.
  • Topical with ozonated olive oil – Skin conditions, infections, or non-healing injuries.
  • Oral – It can be applied directly to the gums and teeth to stimulate healing.
  • Bag/Spot – This is where ozone gas is delivered to either an entire limb or a small infection requiring more attention. It is useful for toenail fungus, diabetic neuropathies, ulcers, early stages of gangrene, MRSA infections, and insect bites.

Please note that other therapies must also be utilized for many of these conditions, but the ozone application increases these therapies’ effectiveness and speed.

Onwards & Upwards with Oxygen!

We are now scheduling ozone treatments all day on Tuesdays. In February, we will add Thursdays as well. Ashley, our Medical Assistant, can administer the simpler nasal and ear treatments anytime she is in the office.

We still request that you schedule the treatment through the front desk with Annalisa or Danielle so that the room does not get double-booked. This therapy is available to those who are not patients of NENH. Although, a Consent for Treatment form must be signed before the ozone treatment can be received.

The cost of each ozone treatment is $30. The patient is responsible for the materials needed to administer the treatment. Materials include items that are labeled with the patient’s name and re-used at subsequent treatments. Prices range from $1-15.