Approximately 2.5 million Americans (8 percent of adults and 7 percent of children) suffer from asthma.
If you or someone you love is part of this group and struggles with asthma, this guide is for you. Read on to learn more about the benefits of using a sauna and asthma care. You’ll also find some tips on how to choose the best sauna and how to use it for asthma management.
What Is Asthma?
Asthma is a respiratory condition. It causes the airways to narrow and swell — they may also produce extra mucus. All of these issues, in turn, make breathing difficult and can trigger issues like coughing, wheezing, and shortness of breath.
Many people find that their asthma symptoms get worse in the following situations:
- Exercising, especially outdoors when the air is cold or dry
- Working around irritants like chemical fumes, dust, and gas
- Exposure to airborne substances like pollen, mold, pest waste, and pet dander
What Is an Infrared Sauna?
An infrared sauna is a sauna that uses light waves to heat the body.
These kinds of saunas operate at lower temperatures compared to traditional saunas (although they still get quite hot. This can make the heat more tolerable for users, especially those who are sensitive to high temperatures).
Benefits of Sauna Therapy for Asthma
At this point, you might be wondering what an infrared sauna has to do with asthma management. The truth is that saunas offer a lot of benefits to those who struggle with respiratory issues — there are even benefits to using an infrared sauna for bronchitis treatment.
The following are some specific infrared sauna benefits for those who are dealing with asthma, in particular:
For people with asthma and other respiratory issues like bronchitis, spending time in the sauna helps to relax the muscles of the bronchioles (narrow passageways in the lungs). Asthma causes these muscles to become tense, but exposure to warm air in the sauna encourages them to relax one more.
Immune System Support
Regular sauna usage is also good for the immune system. It can increase white blood cell production and make it easier for the body to fight off infections, including respiratory infections that can be more dangerous to those with asthma.
Elevated stress levels make people more likely to react to other triggers, like pet dander or pollen. It can also cause them to feel more emotional, which further increases their breathing rate and worsens asthma symptoms.
How to Choose the Best Sauna for Asthma
Are you interested in using an in-home infrared sauna for asthma symptom management? If so, here are some factors to consider that will help you to choose the right one:
Start by checking the size of the sauna.
Is the sauna large enough for you to sit in comfortably? If more than one person will be using it at a time, can the sauna accommodate everyone without cramming them in too tightly?
EMFs are electromagnetic frequencies. Although there are no significant studies that show a link between EMFs and cancer, some people prefer to be extra cautious about exposure to them, so you may want to look for a low-EMF sauna when you’re comparing your options.
In-home saunas can be major power users and could increase your electric bill significantly if you’re not careful. To avoid seeing a sky-high electric bill, look for an electrically efficient sauna that will provide all the health benefits without being overly expensive.
Many infrared saunas come with built-in speakers so you can listen to music or podcasts during your sessions. If this is important to you, make sure the sound quality is to your liking so you can get the most out of your investment.
App Compatibility and Usability
Some infrared saunas also come with a mobile app that you can download to your phone or another mobile device. That way, you can use these devices to adjust the temperature, change the song you’re listening to, etc.
If you’re looking into this type of sauna, make sure you’re comfortable with the app and like the way it works before you make a final decision.
How to Use an At-Home Infrared Sauna
Once you’ve chosen the right at-home infrared sauna, it’s time to make sure you’re using it properly. Listed below are some tips to help you see the best results from your sauna, whether you’re using it for asthma symptoms management or help with any other issues:
- Hydrate before, during, and after: Drink plenty of water before, during, and after your sauna session; you’ll sweat a lot while you’re in there, so you need to replenish your fluids to avoid becoming dehydrated.
- Start with a short session: Don’t overdo it, especially during your first time in the sauna; 10 to 15 minutes is great for a first-time user, but you can spend even less time in the sauna if you are sensitive to the heat.
- Start with a low temperature: Don’t overdo it on temperature, either; start with a low heat setting, around 100 degrees Fahrenheit or whatever the sauna’s lowest temperature is, so you can ease your way in.
- Don’t fall asleep: Sit still while you’re in the sauna, moving around too much could cause your heart rate to become too elevated; at the same time, don’t relax so much that you fall asleep, as this is dangerous and increases your risk of overheating and becoming dehydrated.
Start Using an Infrared Sauna for Asthma Today
Now that you know more about the link between using an infrared sauna and asthma treatment, is it time to make some changes to your routine? Keep the information discussed above in mind so you can choose the right infrared sauna and start seeing great results right away.
If you need help selecting a good sauna, Sun Home Saunas has got you covered. Check out our collection today to look at our options and find the best one for your needs.
If you want to experience all the benefits an infrared sauna has to offer, we’ve got you covered at Sun Home Saunas. Check out our online store today to see all the different options available to you. If you don't have room for an actual in-home infrared sauna, then purchasing a portable infrared sauna blanket may be the best option for you. Infrared sauna blankets provide many of the same benefits of an actual sauna but are only $500 and can be used in any space!