Saunas and Hydration: How to Stay Safe and Prevent Dehydration During Heat Therapy

Timothy Munene Timothy Munene
Saunas and Hydration: How to Stay Safe and Prevent Dehydration During Heat Therapy

Embracing sauna therapy is one of the methods you can use to improve your overall wellness. However, you must be prepared for the journey. Hydration is essential and one of the core factors to consider before, during, and after your sauna session.

Proper hydration will enhance your experience while ensuring your body acquires the optimal benefits of sauna bathing and put dehydration at bay. Read on for more details on saunas, hydration, and how to remain safe and avoid dehydration when using the sauna. 

How to Reduce the Risk of Dehydration When Using the Sauna

You must be well-hydrated before, during, and after your sauna session to lower the risk of dehydration. Proper hydration pre-sauna is crucial for preventing dehydration. Take sufficient fluids before using the sauna to avoid strain on the heart and increase blood volume. Drink up to a litre of water before your sauna session to prepare your body appropriately.

Water acts as a natural coolant for the body, prepping sauna users for high temperatures and facilitating the regulation of core temperature all through the session. Poor pre-sauna hydration puts you at risk of encountering severe effects such as lightheadedness or dizziness, which can degrade the therapeutic process.

Again, drinking sufficient water is crucial for people who use the sauna as part of a post-workout regimen—working out results in sweating, depleting your body’s water reserves. As a result, it's important to replenish lost fluids before experiencing the sauna heat. 

Hydrating During the Sauna Session

Sipping water while using the sauna helps you maintain proper hydration levels without overworking your system. Hydrating is crucial, but you must be careful to avoid overdoing it. Remember, excess water intake while in the sauna can cause discomfort or hinder natural sweating, which is vital to detoxification. 

Rehydrating After the Sauna Session

Once you complete your sauna session, continue drinking water to rehydrate and replenish lost fluids. Remember, the more you sweat while inside the sauna, the more fluids you will lose. Replenishing lost fluids helps rehydrate the body and facilitates recovery, preventing after-sauna fatigue and maintaining overall well-being and health.

Prioritize rehydrating after completing your sauna session. Besides electrolyte and mineral-rich beverages, include hydrating fruits like strawberries and watermelon. Rehydration is a continuous process that you should practice regularly to ensure full recovery. 

Hydrating Drinks to Consider Post-Sauna

Besides water, other fluids you can consider after your sauna session include:

Coconut water: It is rich in electrolytes and is tasty

Electrolyte-infused water: This specially infused formulated water restores minerals in the body

Herbal tea: Choose a caffeine-free, soothing herbal tea option to replenish lost fluids gently

Fruit-infused water: Add fruits to your drinking water to give it flavor and enjoy its hydrating benefits.

Maple water: It is a natural and unique source of hydration with a sweet taste

Watermelon juice: Watermelons contain a high-water content and are rich in nutrients

Alkaline water: If you want a pH-balanced hydration fluid, then alkaline water is ideal

Homemade smoothies: Blend your preferred fruits for a rich, hydrating drink. 

Aloe vera juice: This drink is a rich hydration option

Lemon ginger water: It is a zesty combination that hydrates while stimulating digestion 

Post-sauna replenishment involves more than drinking water. You must choose beverages that provide minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium, and electrolytes to replace lost nutrients. Hydrating gives the body the essential resources to function optimally after a sauna session. Individuals using infrared saunas should focus on their post-sauna hydration needs. Remember, infrared saunas' deep tissue penetration properties can trigger profuse sweating under lower temperatures, forcing users to downplay the importance of hydrating. 

How to Spot Dehydration While Using the Sauna

Watch out for signs of dehydration, mainly if you frequently use traditional and infrared saunas. These include a dry mouth, thirst, dizziness, fatigue, and dark-colored urine. Maintaining hydration involves listening to your body and hydrating sufficiently. Have a water bottle within reach during your sauna session to take regular sips. 

How Can Regular Sauna Users Maintain Hydration?

Do you use the sauna regularly? Adopting a hydration routine is vital to getting optimal sauna benefits and reducing the risks. As mentioned, start hydrating before entering the sauna, while using the sauna, and after your sauna session. Your hydration routine should help you maintain a steady fluid intake and not over-consume fluids. 

If you participate in intense or lengthy sauna sessions, then consider hydration supplements. Always consult your medical practitioner before incorporating supplements into your wellness routine. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Saunas and Hydration

·       How Much Water Should Sauna Enthusiasts Drink?

Hydrating pre-sauna sessions helps your body replenish lost fluids while regulating its temperature. Drink at least one litre of water one hour before entering the sauna. Increase your water intake if you plan to prolong your session. 

·       Should I Drink Water While Inside the Sauna?

Yes. Sip water to stay hydrated, especially if you plan to extend your sauna session. Keep a heat-resistant water container within reach, and ensure you’re taking small sips to maintain hydration without weighing down your system.

·       What Dehydration Symptoms Should I Watch Out For?

Watch out for excessive fatigue, dry mouth, headache, and dizziness. These can be a sign of dehydration. Should you experience them, leave the sauna immediately to cool down and rehydrate. 

·       What Other Beverages Apart From Water Should I Drink to Hydrate During My Sauna Session?

Water is the ideal hydration option, but you can still drink electrolyte-infused beverages, coconut water, or homemade smoothies. Avoid caffeine and alcohol to prevent further dehydration. 

How to Maximize the Benefits of Hydration

Hydrating can highly boost your overall sauna experience, enabling you to reap optimal benefits. Here are tips to help you maximize your experience. 

·       Maintain Hydration

Stay well hydrated before, during, and after the sauna session. Before starting your sauna session, drink sufficient water to provide the body with essential fluids to facilitate sweating and prevent dehydration.

A litre or more of water before your sauna session would be ideal. The length of your sauna session should determine the amount of water you take. Sip water during the sauna session and listen to your body for any signs of dehydration. Remember, some people prefer drinking water before than in between sessions. Regardless of your inclination, rehydrate to replace lost fluids and prevent dehydration. 

·       Watch Out for the Water Temperature

The temperature of your drinking water during your sauna session is crucial. Some people prefer cold water to help them cool down quickly, while others choose room-temperature water to prevent body shock. Experiment with different temperatures to establish what suits you and improves your sauna experience. 


Saunas have been used for years due to the benefits they offer to users. However, using the sauna can expose you to the risk of dehydration. Understanding how vital hydration is to sauna use is crucial. Prepare appropriately before starting your session, and watch out for the symptoms of dehydration during your sauna session. Rehydrate after every session to replenish lost fluids and keep your body hydrated and ready for the next sauna session. Integrate proper hydration habits into your daily routine to enjoy your sauna session's benefits without risking your health.

Don’t Miss Out!

Get the latest special deals & wellness tips!