Salt has been used for various ages, from preserving food to treatment for different medical conditions. These days, salt room halotherapy has gained great popularity as an approach to cure respiratory issues and problems with the skin and even improve the immune system. Still, many people don’t understand how does salt therapy work mainly because they don’t believe that salt has the power to heal. In this article, we’ll try to find out what salt therapy is good for and what salt room therapy does.
Salt therapy at the glance
Salt therapy, also known as halotherapy, is an alternative treatment that incorporates salty air or water that a patient should breathe, bathe, or drink. This approach originated in the Middle Ages, but scientists recently discovered its potential. Salt is a natural substance considered safe for people and doesn’t provide many side effects.
The main benefits of salt therapy are the following – treatment of various respiratory conditions, such as asthma and bronchitis, relief of cough and shortness of breath, improvement of lung function, elimination of toxins and pollens from the lungs, reduction of inflammation, treatment for depressive states and anxiety, healing of some skin conditions, including acne, eczema, and psoriasis, and more.
According to the 2007 study, participants who suffer from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) reported relief of symptoms and better well-being after salt therapy. Patients used dry salt inhalers for 30 minutes every day – the course lasted three months with salt therapy five days per week.
Another research conducted in 2014 concluded that halotherapy provided anti-allergic and anti-inflammatory properties. Participants of this clinical trial suffered from chronic bronchitis and bronchial asthma. However, there isn’t medical evidence that salt therapy can treat skin conditions in people or fight depression. These suggestions are based on the self-reporting of the patients.
What does salt therapy do?
When it comes to salt therapy used for relaxing purposes, it can be divided into active and passive. Active salt rooms involve a machine called a halogenerator that is needed to grind salt into tiny particles and then spread them in the room. On the other hand, passive salt rooms don’t provide special equipment for salt grinding.
These rooms contain a variety of salt, such as Himalayan salt, and look like a salt cave. Conducting salt therapy in such environments requires specific humidity and temperature. Interestingly, active salt rooms feature higher salt content.
Salt therapy for treating medical conditions can be both dry and wet. Halotherapy is typically associated with a dry salt therapy conducted in active salt rooms. The lungs and skin are exposed to the salty air that is filled with tiny salt particles. In contrast, wet salt therapies are related to drinking salted water, nasal lavage with salted water, having a bath with salty water and minerals, gargling salt water, and others.