Flu symptoms after visiting the sauna: causes and development

After a relaxing sauna session, most people expect to feel refreshed and relaxed. It is all the more surprising when instead a sore throat, cough, cold, aching limbs or even fever sets in. But what is behind it?
Amplification of already existing symptoms
© nyul/123rf.com

Intensification of already existing symptoms

First, it is important to understand that the sauna visit itself is not the cause of the cold symptoms. In many cases, a cold or flu was already going on, but the sauna intensified the symptoms. The abrupt temperature change in the body can invigorate existing cold viruses and accelerate their multiplication. Prof. Martin Scherer, Director of the Polyclinic for General Medicine at the University Medical Centre Hamburg-Eppendorf, emphasises that the adaptability of the organism is strongly challenged in this case.

How does the sauna influence the immune system?

Sauna bathing has a variety of effects on our body. It promotes blood circulation, relaxes the muscles and can strengthen the immune system. However, for people who already have a cold, the change in temperature can weaken the immune system in the short term and viruses can spread more quickly.

Preventive measures

To avoid unpleasant surprises after a sauna session, you should listen to your body. If you feel tired or unwell, it may be better to avoid the sauna until you feel fit again. A balanced diet, regular exercise and sufficient sleep are also important to strengthen the immune system.


Taking a sauna can offer many health benefits, but you should still pay attention to your body’s signals and skip a sauna session if necessary, especially if you feel signs of an incipient cold.

Product recommendation: Sauna infusion “Eucalyptus, Sage and Mint

Enjoy your sauna session with a refreshing and invigorating infusion. A sauna infusion with eucalyptus, sage, and mint not only provides a pleasant fragrance, but can also clear the airways and relieve cold symptoms. Ideal for anyone who wants to make the most of their sauna session.

BERGBAD BIO-Saunaaufguss Eukalyptus Salbei & Minze 100ml...