Health Benefits of Bathing
By Ama H. Vanniarachchy
Having a nice shower after a tiring day is refreshing. It cleanses our bodies as well as makes us feel refreshed and relaxed. Having a nice bath in the morning, before you start the day will add a boost to your energy, while having a bath mid-day or at the end of a tiring day, will wash off your tiredness and help regain energy. Bathing has many great positive impacts on our physical health as well as our mental health. Hence, bathing is important to maintain our good health.
Let us look at some health benefits of bathing.
Physical health benefits
Cleans the body - a bath cleans the skin from dirt and dust and avoids irritation and inflammation. It also removes dead skill cells off the skin.
Soothes muscles and joints - a warm bath helps in soothing your muscle soreness and tension. Add some Epsom salt into your warm bath and soak yourself for some time. You can do this a few times a week. Bathing can reduce the tension on overstretched muscles while it helps to heal sore muscles by relaxing them.
Heals skin wounds - warm water mixed with salt will help to heal wounds and sores (not all wounds and sores should be washed. Some should be kept dry).
Blood circulation - according to research spending time in a bath tub increases blood circulation to the limbs and helps nourishment of damaged cells. This is also healthy for the heart.
Reduces sugar levels: According to a study led by Dr. Philip L. Hooper from the McKee Medical Centre in Loveland, Colorado, diabetics who immersed themselves in a hot water tub for about 20-30 minutes (for 3 weeks) had lowered blood sugar levels (by 13 %). One of the study participants reduced his daily insulin dose by about 18 percent after 10 days of hot-tub therapy.
Mental health benefits
It is self-care - A bath is a way of self-care. It is not merely a ritual or a health habit. It helps the healing process of the mind and body. So do not hurry or rush your bath. Take your time, relax and enjoy it. It is not practical to have such a bath daily, but at least dedicate one or two days per week for such a relaxing bath.
It is a stress-relief - the time you spend in water relaxes the mind. It reduces stress and also as it calms the body, soothes muscles and joints; it has a positive effect on the mind too.
Helps to battle depression - warm baths help to reduce stress hormones and balance serotonin levels. This has a great impact on our mood. So bathing helps you a lot to feel happy, relaxed and helps you think calmly and clear.
Helps you sleep well - as your body relaxes, feels clean, and has good blood circulation along with relaxed muscles, you will experience a more relaxed sleep after a bath.
Now you know how important a bath is for you. So do not just bath as it is merely a health habit. Do it consciously.
Make sure your bathroom is a place that you can relax, enjoy some quality ‘me-time’. Light some scented candles, scented oils in the bathroom. Add some refreshing oils to the bath. Indoor plants are a great way to uplift the atmosphere of the bathroom.
You can also keep some books in the bathroom or play some soft music such as natural sounds (water sound, birds singing, or rain sound) in the bathroom.
Always keep your bathroom super clean and tidy as this is one place that you spend alone and relax.