Humidifier vs Nebulizer

Humidifiers and nebulizers have a short list of similarities. Humidifiers help add moisture to the air in your home or office. Nebulizers are used to administer medication. Healthline.com has a pretty good description of how to use and clean a nebulizer. The medication used in nebulizers will be prescribed by a doctor. First we provide a short list of uses for humidifiers. Further down the page we give a quick overview of nebulizers, how they function and their uses. All the way at the bottom we go over a few ways that these two devices are similar to each other.

Humidifiers

People have a lot of different reasons they use humidifiers.


Nebulizers

People use nebulizers to deliver inhaled medications. The most common use for these medications is to relieve asthma symptoms. For small children, they are much easier to use than pocket sized inhalers. Another advantage they can have over the pocket sized inhalers is that they can deliver more than one medicine at a time. Adults with very severe asthma may use nebulizers as well.

There is not an exhaustive list of uses for nebulizers. They are used to turn liquid medicines into a vapor you can inhale. That’s it!

Nebulizers come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Smaller, battery powered nebulizers are portable and easy to transport. Others need to be plugged into an outlet on the wall and set up on a table. They work by compressing air and moving that compressed air through the liquid medication. This process turns the liquid into a mist that can be inhaled. Humidifiers may rely on evaporation, use ultrasonic vibrations or heat to turn the water in their tanks into a mist.

The main difference here is that humidifiers need to turn water into a mist and nebulizers are doing the same to a medication. Different asthma medication may have very different properties that do not allow them to be turned into a mist the same way that water can.

Similarities

If you look back to the list of reasons use humidifiers you may notice that asthma is on that list too. Very dry air can exacerbate asthma symptoms. You can fix this in a number of ways by using whole house humidifiers or a humidifier designed to treat a single room. There’s also the option of using a personal humidifier.

Personal humidifiers come with a mask-like attachment that helps contain the steam so the user can easily breathe it in. A nebulizer without medication in it would function in a similar manner.

Humidifiers vs Nebulizers

This article named some differences and similarities between nebulizers and humidifiers. If you have any questions or would like to see something clarified, leave a comment below!

 

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