You may have heard of an infrared sauna but are still a little confused about how and if it will benefit your health.
I had only heard of far-infrared once before in my life when my daughter had a car accident and broke her collar bone. She was released from the ER with what can only be described as a “crappy sling” and some heavy duty pain killers. My daughter is a tiny person and for that reason, has to be very careful about how much pain medication she takes. She was in so much pain and all we could do was to give her tylonol, which did not relieve the pain, it really just took the edge off so she could sleep.
It was at that time when i contacted a friend of mine who is a chiropractor to see if he could help. I said, “I know you can’t do anything chiropractically for her, but do you have any tips for us?” He said, “bring her in right away, I have an idea”
We arrived at his office and he had her remove her sling and shirt. He brought in a small machine that had a handheld red light on the end. I was amazed and obviously very skeptical, coz that’s who I am. As a yoga teacher and massage therapist I have seen all kinds of whacky, wild treatments that claim to cure everything from the common cold to autism spectrum disorder (my son is autistic), and this definitely registered on my “bullshit detector.” I was skeptical at the very least. Credit where it’s due, he made no promises as he explained that he has just started using this and he didin’t know if it wwould help or not.
He treated her with the light, every day for 10 minutes for the next 2 weeks. After only her second treatment, we left the office and I drove her home, she didn’t feel safe enough to drive alone because she could only use one hand. As I dropped he off at home, she leaned forward and instictively picked up her purse with he right hand. I asked, “didn’t that hurt?” she answered with a smile, “Ohhhh, I forgot, it felt wierd becasue I can feel the bone move, but there’s no pain!” I was astounded!
It would be another 6 years before I actually started to use far-infrared treatments with my clients at my office. The results have been interesting to say the least.
What is an infrared sauna? Does it have health benefits?
“An infrared sauna is a type of sauna that uses light to create heat. This type of sauna is sometimes called a far-infrared sauna — “far” describes where the infrared waves fall on the light spectrum. A traditional sauna uses heat to warm the air, which in turn warms your body. An infrared sauna heats your body directly without warming the air around you.
The appeal of saunas in general is that they cause reactions similar to those elicited by moderate exercise, such as vigorous sweating and increased heart rate. An infrared sauna produces these results at lower temperatures than does a regular sauna, which makes it accessible to people who can’t tolerate the heat of a conventional sauna. But does that translate into tangible health benefits? Perhaps.
Several studies have looked at using infrared saunas in the treatment of chronic health problems, such as high blood pressure, congestive heart failure, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease, headache, type 2 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, and found some evidence of benefit. However, larger and more-rigorous studies are needed to confirm these results. Some of these studies were also performed with patients using traditional sauna.
On the other hand, no adverse effects have been reported with infrared saunas. So if you’re considering trying a sauna for relaxation, an infrared sauna might be an option.” ~ Brent A. Bauer, M.D.