Whilst many people choose a quick shower to wash away the stresses of a long day at work, swapping your routine for a soothing soak is much better for boosting your physical and mental health. Whilst many people suffering from back pain, arthritis and sports injuries can happily attest to the power of time in the tub, the benefits of taking a bath are yet to be as widely known as they should be.
In fact taking a hot bath can improve your general wellbeing in a multitude of different ways, improving everything from your mood to your immune system. Just remember, the therapeutic potential of a bath is best experienced at a moderate heat. Excessively hot baths actually put your nervous system under more stress. If you don’t believe the hype, read on for a run-down of the health benefits of bathing.
1. Relax your body
It might sound obvious, but the act of lying down horizontally in water can greatly help to comfort a tired body. The heat of the water enables lactic acid to be expelled with greater ease, causing your muscles to relax and physical tension to dissipate. The deep muscle relaxation experienced during a luxurious bath can also help to soothe cramps, ease tension headaches and improve muscle elasticity. The pressure of the water on the body also encourages healthy circulation, helping cells to regenerate more efficiently. To make your bath time even more indulgent, add a splash of lavender essential oil to the water.
2. Improve your mental wellbeing
The psychological benefits of taking time out and relaxing in the tub are numerous. Grabbing a good page-turner or a magazine is great for taking your mind off the financial and emotional worries of the day. Treating bath time as sacrosanct and keeping it free from all outside interruptions is also a great technique for unwinding from the stresses you carry with you during the day. Adding a splash of sage oil to the water can also help sharpen your memory whilst simultaneously acting as a natural mood-booster.
3. Prepare for a sound night’s sleep
For those suffering from insomnia or irregular sleep patterns, try a bath as a natural alternative to over-the-counter sleep remedies. Moving from a warm tub to bed lowers your temperature and triggers your body to release melatonin. This hormone is linked to improved sleep and is essential to a restful bedtime routine.
4. Keep illness at bay
If you’ve got the sniffles, a warm bath can be just the ticket to ease your symptoms. Pop a few drops of eucalyptus oil into the tub and ease any respiratory discomfort with a few deep breaths. A ten minute steam bath can help to moisturise nasal passages, dispel aches and pains and ease dizziness. For those looking to detox, try a hot salt bath. Salt helps to purify skin by drawing out all the grit and grime picked up in the course of a day.
5. Soothe your skin
For eczema sufferers, the addition of natural essential oils to the bath water can also help to soothe sore skin without the use of any pharmaceuticals. Coconut oil or olive oil are particularly good salves that can help to moisturise dry, flaky skin. For those wanting to exfoliate, try a natural loofa or a sea sponge.
For those of you who fancy splashing out on a new bathroom to enjoy their relaxation time in style, visit a walk in bath company in the UK and see the full range of designs available.