Halotherapy, or salt therapy, involves inhaling tiny salt particles to improve your breathing. Most often, the therapy is done in spa-like salt rooms, to reduce inflammation and promote respiratory health in the body.
“In 1843, Polish physician Dr. Felix Boczkowski discovered that men working in the salt mines at Wieliczka suffered fewer respiratory problems than the general population. He attributed his finding to the salt aerosols being inhaled by the miners in the underground environment. As the workers were mining salt (through chiseling, grinding, and hammering at the salt), micro-sized salt particles were being disbursed into the air.”
During World War II, the Klutert salt caves in the German town of Ennepetal were used as shelter against heavy bombing. The people who remained in the caves for prolonged periods breathed in the salt dust. German physician Dr. K.H. Spannahel noticed that those who had taken shelter in the salt mines appeared to have experienced relief from their respiratory problems.
Health Benefits of Halotherapy
Studies have found halotherapy can have benefits for respiratory conditions, skin problems, and allergies. Salt therapy, also known as halotherapy, is a natural remedy that promotes respiratory and skin health through inhaling salt aerosol (microscopic sodium chloride particles).
As inflammation is a natural response to injury, chronic inflammation can lead to several illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, and autoimmune diseases. Salt has shown to decrease cytokines, which are proteins produced by immune cells that regulate inflammation. Cytokine production is often elevated in people with chronic inflammation.
Salt therapy also improves airway function. When the respiratory system is compromised, inflammation can occur as a result of increased oxidative stress and damage to lung tissue. Salt therapy has been shown to improve lung function by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, and may help prevent and treat respiratory diseases. Immunomodulatory effects are also attributed to salt therapy, which means the regulation of our immune system to prevent chronic inflammation.
Halotherapy can be applied in many ways, including inhalation, topical application, and bathing. A Valley of Vitality Wellness Studio offers the most common method: inhaling dry salt particles in a salt room. In the active salt cabin, there is a machine called a halo-generator, which breaks down the salt into tiny particles that circulate in the room. Some benefits are listed below:
- Mucoactive, clearing up mucus from your airways
- Antibacterial, helping prevent infections
Research found because of these properties, halotherapy can be used for treatment of the following illnesses:
- Lung infection
- Throat infection or pharyngitis
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Smoking-related breathing problems
- Respiratory allergies
- Cold or cough
- Cystic fibrosis
Halotherapy can also be used to treat breathing problems caused by COVID-19, by increasing the amount of oxygen in your blood.
Another benefit many women find appealing is the tiny salt particles used in halotherapy can also help repair skin cells and protect them from aging and infection. A few additional applications are listed below:
- Acne and rosacea
- Skin allergies
- Fungal infection such as onychomycosis
- Wrinkles and signs of aging skin
One word of caution when using the salt cave, you could have some side effects; coughing, or more mucus secretion because your nasal passages are clearing out. Rarely, some may notice skin irritation, conjunctivitis, or pink eye.
In summary, salt therapy has immense anti-inflammatory effects and helps diminish chronic inflammation. It reduces the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines, improves respiratory function, and has immunomodulatory effects. A Valley of Vitality Wellness Studio recommends Halotherapy because it’s a safe natural therapy that can be used to reduce inflammation and improve overall health. If you would like to know more about Halotherapy or schedule an appointment, please contact our wellness studio today…