We all know that nothing boosts the mood better than a hot bath. All the more so when the winter aura keeps us at home or we’ve got frozen stiff. However, we sometimes feel unwell after getting out of the tub. Hot baths bring lots of benefits but, unfortunately, they aren’t good for everyone. When does a hot bath help and when does it do harm?
Benefits of Hot Baths
- People who do sports know that a hot bath relieves muscles after a workout. High temperature widens the blood vessels and relieves pain through enhancing removal of lactic acid.
- Warm baths are beneficial for people struggling with chronic joint pain. Warm water widens the blood and lymph vessels and stimulates blood circulation. By doing so, it reduces pain and minimizes tension.
- Warm baths help fight stress, relieve tense muscles caused by stress, brings relief and relaxation. Essential oils intensify the effect: try adding a few drops of tea tree, rose, sage or bergamot oil to water. Magnesium salt also reduces stress: the elements from the salt penetrate the skin, calming and relaxing the body.
- Hot bath opens up the skin pores and helps get rid of toxins.
Bad Sides of Hot Baths
- You must avoid high temperatures if your skin is prone to broken capillaries because hot water intensifies the problem.
- Heat intensifies menstrual bleeding so avoid hot baths during your period. To make things worse, they will make you feel tired instead of bringing relief.
- Hot bath isn’t a good idea for moms-to-be because they threaten the baby. Dilated blood vessels may disturb the flow of blood through the placenta, trigger hemorrhage or even cause miscarriage.
- People who suffer from hypertension, blood clotting issues or heart diseases should avoid hot baths too. Shockingly, increasing body temperature by just one celsius degree speeds up heart beat by 20 beats per minute. This may lead to dizzy feeling or even losing consciousness.
- High temperature of water doesn’t have a beneficial effect on the skin. Hot baths dry out the epidermis, causing itchiness and irritate the skin. Even your scalp suffers, particularly if it’s hypersensitive and greasy. Heat stimulates sebum glands and intensifies oil production.
Do hot baths help lose weight?
Students from the Loughborough University proved that an hour-long bath in hot water makes us lose the same amount of calories as a half an hour-long walk! It means loss of 140 calories! Researchers claim that the so-called passive heating may be treated as an enhancer when you try to lose weight, especially when you suffer from some metabolic disorders. It is also said to help control diabetes type 2.
Hot baths are recommended as a form of treatment in Japan, e.g. to treat digestive system disorders, obstructions, diabetes or liver diseases. Balneology is getting in the spotlight these days. This bath therapy is recommended by specialists in the form of thermal baths and hot springs.