Updated: Dec 9, 2020
Are saunas good for you?
Saunas have been around for over thousands of years and managed to remain a popular trend in today's spa treatments. But bathers want to know how healthy is it actually for your body and what are the possible side effects.
After experiencing it myself just a few days ago at SoJo Spa, I must say it has its benefits and risks. There is no doubt that stress reduction is one of the common benefits of sauna use. It has helped burn calories, assist in recovery from fatigue, energize and rejuvenate both the body and mind. To better help explain this procedure, the heat from the sauna basically relaxes the body's muscles, improves blood circulation and stimulates the release of endorphins.
After doing some research of my own I learned that endorphins are the body’s all-natural "feel good" chemical, and their release provides a truly wonderful "after sauna glow.” Endorphins can have a mild, "tranquilizing effect" and the ability to minimize the pain of arthritis and muscle soreness.
Body temperature also rises from the heat of the sauna. As a result, the blood vessels begins to dilate, thus increasing blood circulation. This increased blood flow in turn speeds up the body’s natural healing.
Saunas are also well known for cleansing one's skin. When the body begins to produce sweat via deep sweating, the skin is then cleansed and dead skin cells are replaced - keeping your skin in good working condition. Sweating is essential for rinsing bacteria out of the epidermal layer and sweat ducts.
Nonetheless, the side effects can vary for people with certain conditions. For instance, individuals with kidney disease may be at a higher risk of dehydration and fainting. The high temperatures can also cause dizziness which is what I experienced, and nausea in some bathers.
Overall, sweating has long been used as a form of therapy. Moderate use of a sauna appears to be safe for most people. However, I recommend one speak to a doctor first if there is a medical condition. Other than that, hit the steam room and sweat your problems away!