There are so many benefits for the mind and body, many of which are scientifically proven, from taking a long soak in the bath.
As we age, during periods of ill health, or post-operation, we may find it difficult to access the bathtub. We investigate the health benefits of taking a bath, which may leave you longing for a hot bath yourself.
1# Taking a bath can help prepare you for sleep
Taking a warm bath before bed is believed to help you get to sleep faster. The science behind this claim is that when you soak in the bath this raises your body temperature, but then when you get out of the bath your body temperature drops.
The rapid drop in temperature signals the body to produce melatonin, which is a sleep hormone. It is believed, to get the best from this technique, that you should aim to be taking a bath approximately 90 minutes before the time you wish to go to sleep.
2# Calm irritated skin
Warm bath water can help ease irritation when the skin is damaged or sore. This can be even more effective when you add natural products to your bathwater, such as essential oils like aloe or coconut for hydration, Epsom salts for muscle pain and infections, and oatmeal which calms itchy skin.
Essential oils can also be used for their scent, such as lavender oil which is very relaxing, or
3# Easy breathing
Taking a bath can help increase your lung capacity and oxygen intake whilst you are lying in the water with your chest submerged. The warm temperate of the water will make your heart beat faster which helps with the increased oxygen.
The steam from the bath will help with clearing sinuses and help your lungs breathe easier. The steam will make the blood vessels in your face and nose open which loosens mucus build up. Say goodbye to your blocked nose.
Adding eucalyptus oil will also make breathing feel easier, especially if you have a cold.
4# Prevent colds and improve your immune system
We already know that taking a bath can relieve the symptoms of colds, blocked noses, coughs, and flu, but a warm bath benefit is that it can also help prevent them.
The hot water kills bacteria which gives your immunise system a boost.
5# Give your mental health a boost
A warm bath increases the amount of serotonin in your body. Serotonin is a chemical which is produced by the brain and is known for making us feel happy. It is the chemical which helps transmit messages between nerve cells.
Serotonin is known as the happy hormone, as it helps to stabilise moods and regulate positive emotions of happiness and wellbeing. It is said to regulate anxiety and help prevent depression.
In addition to boosting your serotonin levels, just taking the time out for yourself to take a bath, will help you relax and feel comfortable.
Warm water also calms the nervous system which reduces stress and anxiety.
6# Heart Health
Warm water makes your heart beat faster, which gives your heart a little workout, similar to taking a relaxing walk. Taking regular baths is also linked to lower blood pressure, improved blood flow and better circulation.
All of which can help in preventing heart attacks and strokes when combined with a general program of self-care.
7# Ease the pain for those suffering from Arthritis
For those who suffer from pain caused by Arthritis and other painful conditions, a warm bath can provide relief from the discomfort.
The warm bath will aid with blood circulation, helping loosen joints and muscles.
8# Improve muscle function
Whilst in the bath you experience less pressure on joints due to the weightlessness of the water. It makes it easier for you to do small stretches, which can in time strengthen muscles.
If you suffer from balance issues, the water can be a safe place to stretch without worrying about trips and falls, and improving your strength can help prevent future accidents.
Wrapping things up
What do you think of our 8 benefits of bathing? Can you think of any more, if so let us know via the comment section below and we’ll add the best ones to the post.