7 Sauna Benefits for Your Health and Wellness

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We constantly search for the most healthy lifestyle to fit our wellness needs. We want to not only look good but feel good. The question remains: how can we be healthier? Are you exercising enough? Sleeping enough? Eating clean? The list goes on forever. It can be hard to squeeze it all in with demanding schedules.

The buzz is that sauna bathing is the hottest trend to add to your health and wellness routine for significant benefits. You may experience some of the sauna benefits after a single session. 

Recent studies share insight into the many health benefits of sauna bathing, from the mind to the body. In this article, we’re going to discuss the effect of sauna bathing on your health.

What Is a Sauna?

Sauna is a Finnish word meaning steam room, which means refreshing. Taking a traditional sauna is an ancient custom that began in Finland. The earliest accounts of steam saunas in Eastern Europe are believed to date back to 2000 BC. 

They likely served as a place for Finnish men to cleanse themselves and practice spirituality. Thousands of years later, the sauna is still a place we can escape to when we need rejuvenation from our endlessly busy lives. 

The modern sauna is one of the best amenities a spa can offer. While there are many types of saunas, like an infrared sauna and a steam sauna, they are normally made of wood. These saunas use electric heating or wood fire to heat rocks, creating an environment that can reach temperatures between 150 and 195 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Water is poured on the hot rocks, producing steam that quickly penetrates the skin and raises the body temperature. While this practice usually raises your heart rate in the short term, saunas are known to support heart health.

Unlike a steam room, which uses wet heat, the dry heat in a dry sauna is key to other health benefits, ranging from skin health to mental health

sauna

How Do I Use a Sauna? 

The sauna may be for everyone, but it’s best not to push yourself if it’s your first time using a sauna. Start slow and work your way up to longer sessions. Be aware hydration is important because sauna bathing may have risk factors like dehydration. 

Once a week, for five to 10 minutes, sounds like a good place to start. You can even break that time up into two to three sessions. Work your way up to 15- to 20-minute sessions four to six times a week. 

A towel soaked in cold water can help you keep cool inside the sauna. It’s normal to want to cool your body after or in between a sauna session. You can also take a cool shower, or during the cooler months, you can simply step outside. 

Sauna therapy during the snowy months at The Lodge at Vail in Colorado or The Dominick in New York City can be magical for cold joints and muscles. 

Let’s dive into the many health benefits of saunas for the body.

the-dominick-sauna-room

What Are the Physical Benefits of Saunas?

1. Recovery

Saunas are good for recovery, particularly for our muscles and joints, which can feel tired and sore after a workout. 

The heat exposure relaxes our muscles and can lessen the feeling of soreness, promoting recovery. So, after a long day of surfing by the Baja Beach Club at Mondrian South Beach in Miami or shopping by The Peninsula Beverly Hills in Los Angeles, ResortPass has access to a variety of high-quality saunas to tend to sore muscles. 

Sauna use is perfect for post-massage recovery. Muscles may become tender after a massage, and a session in the sauna can give them some added tender love and care. 

2. Heart Health

Research shows regular sauna use may support healthy blood pressure and reduced risk for cardiovascular disease. This is how it works: 

When your body is exposed to the sauna’s high temperatures, your blood vessels dilate. This allows the blood in your body to circulate well. But be cautious: The low blood pressure that results can become high blood pressure if you switch too quickly from a sauna to the lower temperature outside.

Increased blood circulation allows a better flow of oxygen and other important nutrients throughout the body. You may be able to breathe easier, as sauna use supports the respiratory function in the body.

It only takes one sauna session to get the blood moving and grooving in our bodies, but regular sauna use to get our blood pumping could be the key to managing overall health

3. Detoxifies the Skin  

So, what exactly does time in the sauna do to our skin? When we sweat, the pores in our skin open up, allowing the steam to wash away toxins and impurities for fresher-looking skin. The sauna also allows your skin to stay moist, which can be essential if you struggle with dry skin or psoriasis. 

Harmful toxins make contact with our skin daily, especially when living in bustling cities. We’re exposed to things like car smog, secondhand smoke, and fast food chains on every corner, and it can feel like our skin is constantly under attack. 

It’s important not to let the city grime build up on our skin for too long. Thanks to ResortPass, you don’t have to travel far to enjoy a full-body detoxification. The closest spa and sauna are right in your city.

skin-detox

4. Aging

Sauna use is good for our older friends and family because they can be susceptible to health conditions that attack the body and mind. The sauna could be the golden ticket they’ve been looking for to combat these medical conditions.

As we age, our mobility may slow down, making it harder to break a sweat or experience healthy weight loss. The heat from the sauna helps maintain circulation and healthy blood pressure levels, which can provide support if you suffer from hypertension.

Although regular sauna bathing can’t replace physical activity, sauna use may offer health benefits similar to exercise for those with unable bodies. 

What Are the Mental Health Benefits of Saunas?

1. Brain Health

With age, memory, and cognitive function weaken as our nervous system naturally declines. We might lose the sharpness of our memory or become forgetful. Studies have shown that regular sauna use may lower the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

Good blood flow in our bodies pumps more oxygen to the brain, which can support brain function, promote emotional wellness, and relieve feelings of restlessness. One study suggests that regular sauna use supports healthy cognitive function

The sauna is like a preventative healthcare tool for protecting our mental wellness. 

sauna-kiolani

2. Endorphins

Endorphins are natural chemicals our brains release to cause euphoria. Do you know the feeling you get after a good workout or uncontrollable laughter? Those are endorphins! 

The sauna releases endorphins, which are important for helping cope with pain and stress symptoms. A sedentary lifestyle is easy to fall into when you’re physically and mentally too tired to do anything but veg out after work. But, when our bodies don’t release enough endorphins, we may have trouble sleeping, concentrating, or coping with overwhelming feelings.

The sauna is good for sweating stress away when we feel like we don’t have the time or energy to go to the gym. However, it’s important to prioritize time to move our bodies.

3. Relaxation

A little bit of stress can ruin our mood, but too much stress can make our bodies feel tangled up in a knot. 

It’s important to take time away from life commitments to recharge your batteries. Many people have reported that their overall well-being improved in the sauna. 

It can be challenging to clear your thoughts and unwind. Add feelings of lethargy and restlessness, and it can be difficult to complete everyday tasks. The sauna can be a meditative experience because of its serene environment. 

The heat relaxes your body and calms your mind. Not only will you feel relaxed, but you may feel mentally stronger.

relaxation-spa-at-montelucia

ResortPass Has Access To High-Quality Saunas

ResortPass makes it convenient to access a variety of saunas wherever you are without the hassle of reserving a room. Whether it’s a vacation or a staycation, ResortPass offers day passes to some of the most high-rated spa and resort facilities. 

ResortPass has access to a wide range of amenities, so there’s something for the whole family. While you’re in the sauna, the family can hang poolside. From the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia to the Royal Sonesta San Juan, enjoy access to fitness centers, pools, lazy rivers, and more. 

ResortPass lets you browse select partnered spas to find one that fits your needs and schedule. Once you’ve booked your day pass, you’ll receive a digital pass to access the sauna for the day. It’s that easy. 

Wrapping Things Up

All things considered, the benefits of sauna use are worth making a day of it. Although sauna benefits may have been mostly linked to post-workout recovery, it’s clear now that sauna bathing offers preventative care for the mind and body. 

Studies show that sauna use can be linked to cardiovascular health, a reduced risk for heart disease, healthy blood pressure and circulation, and a healthy brain. Sauna use may also be linked to relieving feelings of stress, tension, and soreness. Regular sauna use supports whole-body wellness.

Don’t let self-care drop to the bottom of your to-do list. The sauna is waiting to melt your worries away.

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