Infrared Sauna Benefits & Contraindications
Although saunas have been around since approximately 1112 A.D. according to written records in Finland, sauna technology has advanced tremendously in recent years. At DTX Cellular Evolution, we use Sunlighten Full Spectrum infrared saunas because these saunas offer short, mid, and far infrared rays for a fully comprehensive therapeutic experience.
There are numerous infrared sauna health benefits that are superior compared to traditional saunas because of the varied wavelengths of infrared waves that penetrate cellular tissue. However, infrared saunas aren’t for everyone as people with certain health conditions may have to consult their physician prior to starting this type of therapy. No matter what change you are planning to make in your self-care and health routine, it’s important to talk to your doctor before making a lifestyle change with a treatment or therapy.
The Benefits of Infrared Sauna Therapy
There are a tremendous number of health benefits that can be achieved by spending time in an infrared sauna. Infrared saunas are an effective healing and prevention tool that can jump-start a commitment to a healthier lifestyle and also maintain good health for many years to come. Infrared saunas work by helping your body rid itself of toxins that build up over time such as mercury and lead and work by detoxing the body.
Here are some of the many infrared sauna benefits our clients have experienced:
Detoxification – Sweating is one of the best ways to rid your body of toxins, thus detoxing and repairing the body. While regular saunas definitely help you sweat it out, infrared saunas are proven to be more effective for releasing toxins through sweat due to the far infrared rays.
Relaxation – The heat from the sauna promotes relaxation by having a parasympathetic effect on the body, which helps the body regulate and deal with stress as cortisol, known as the stress hormone, decreases. This helps to loosen up tight muscles and relieve points of tension in your body.
Eliminate Depression – Just as infrared rays can help regulate hormone levels and keep chronic pain at bay, it can help regulate your mood by lowering stress, fatigue, and pain. This can help clients dealing with depression as their overall well-being and quality of life increases due to having more energy, less aches and pains, and a clearer state of mind.
Improve Heart Function – Regular infrared sauna sessions have been proven to normalize or decrease blood pressure and cholesterol, help prevent high blood pressure, and reduce heart rate variability – stabilizing heart rate due to the therapy prompting a response from the body similar to how we respond to exercise. As the body’s temperature increases, the heart works harder to stabilize temperature.
Weight Loss – Infrared sauna therapy causes your body temperature to increase, which increases the metabolic system as your body works hard to regulate its internal temperature similar to how your body reacts when exercising. When metabolic rate increases, your body burns more calories, resulting in weight loss. While we don’t suggest replacing a good exercise routine with infrared sauna therapy, it’s a great supplement to a weight loss program or for people with injuries that may not be able to exercise.
Skin Purification – When our bodies get rid of toxins, it leads to clearer and healthier skin. Some skin problems are caused by allergens and toxins refusing to leave the body, which can be eliminated during sauna sessions. Near infrared rays also stimulate the production of collagen, which gives skin its suppleness and elasticity.
Improve Blood Circulation – Blood circulation increases when body temperature increases. The mid infrared rays are particularly effective in stimulating blood flow.
Pain Relief – Similar to how the heat from the sauna promotes muscle relaxation and blood circulation, it can also soothe muscle aches and/or joint pain. With regular sessions, infrared rays can even help reverse chronic pain by decreasing symptoms of muscle stiffness and spasms.
Anti-Aging – Heat conditioning can induce heat-shock proteins, which are produced in response to stressful conditions in the body. They aid in stabilizing new proteins and helping refold other proteins that were damaged from cellular stress, keeping components of the cell functioning longer and preventing irreparable damage.
Increase Immune Function/Healing – Near infrared rays are especially effective for wound healing and increased immune function as near infrared rays promote faster cell regeneration and tissue growth.
Infrared Sauna Contraindications
There are certain medical conditions that may put you at risk when using infrared sauna therapy. This may put you at risk of heat stroke, dehydration, or even loss of consciousness. At DTX, we put the health and safety of our clients first before anything else so we want you to be 100% informed of the contraindications and safety tips. However, if you’re unsure if infrared sauna therapy is for you, still consult your doctor for advice.
Medications (Diuretics, Barbiturates or Beta-Blockers) – If you’re on any prescription medication, consult your doctor about the intended effects and possible side-effects that may be relevant. Any medication that affects heart rate, blood pressure and circulation, and the body’s natural heat regulation response. Some prescriptions may inhibit sweating, which hinders the body from releasing heat. This can lead to a heat rash or even a heat stroke.
Children & the Elderly – In children, core body temperature rises much faster than in adults due to a higher metabolic rate and the inability to stabilize body temperature by sweating. In the elderly, the ability to maintain body temperature decreases because of decreased sweat gland function and circulatory conditions.
Cardiovascular Conditions – If you have a history of heart disease, obesity, diabetes, or blood circulatory problems, you may be at risk of putting stress on your heart. As the heat from the infrared sauna prompts the body to increase metabolic rate, this causes the heart to beat faster and harder to reduce the body’s elevated temperature.
Alcohol & Drug Abuse – The use of alcohol and/or drugs can lead to unconsciousness from the body’s negative reaction to high heat. A sauna session will also not help to “sweat” out a hangover; since the body is already in a dehydrated state, sweating will cause further electrolyte depletion. Remember to stay hydrated before and after a session to replace those electrolytes and minerals!
Reduced/Inability to Sweat – If it isn’t obvious already, sweating is a very important part of the infrared sauna process! If you have a reduced ability/inability to sweat, it will be harder to regulate core body temperature and cool the body, which can lead to a heat stroke.
Heat Sensitivity/Fever – If you have a fever or an insensitivity/sensitivity to heat, you should avoid the infrared sauna. It’s best to wait for the fever to dissipate before coming in for a session.
Hemophilia – If you are prone to excess bleeding, it’s best to avoid infrared sauna therapy as the heat stimulates blood circulation.
Pregnancy – If you are pregnant, consult your physician for advice to see if infrared sauna therapy is safe.
Recent Joint Injury – If you had a recent joint injury, an infrared sauna session may worsen the swelling of the injury. Recently injured joints should not be heated.
Implants – Implants of all kinds may contain metal pins or artificial joints reflect the infrared sauna rays.
If you have any questions about our infrared sauna services, contact us!