How to conquer the fear of the sauna

Some love the soothing warmth of the sauna, others get a sinking feeling at the thought of the high temperatures. However, these and similar thoughts are unfounded.
Sauna fear - how to overcome the phobia

Sauna fear – how to overcome the phobia

Didn’t this title make you cringe a little bit? Sure, you as a fan are not afraid to sit naked on the wooden benches. But there are many people who shy away from this step. Maybe you are one of them, maybe one of your acquaintances. But this fear does not have to be. Sure, not everyone will become a passionate sauna-goer. That’s not what we’re trying to achieve. Still, the hours in the heat have so many benefits that no one should give it up out of fear.

Here’s how to conquer your fear of the sauna. There are those people who not only sweat with heat in the sauna. They nervously look at the clock, hoping that soon they will be allowed outside. But just getting up, pushing the door open with a loud noise? No, that wouldn’t be their thing. After all, all eyes in the room would then be on that one person.

How embarrassing. Still, there has to be a way out. The situation is almost unbearable. So the people concerned let their gaze circle around the room and hope that someone will stand up. When the time finally comes, they grab their towel, throw it around their hips as inconspicuously as possible and head outside. Done, the horror is over.

Never at a loss for an excuse

Some people, however, don’t even let it get that far and avoid going to the sweat lodge. Surely you’ve heard one of the typical excuses. “I’m not feeling well today.” “I have to work late today.” You get to hear all this just when you want to go to the sauna with your acquaintance.

Why is that?

You’ve probably already unmasked the coward a long time ago. After all, his excuses always come when it comes to sweating together. But what is the reason? After all, regular sauna bathing is one of the most beautiful hobbies. Do these people have complexes about their figure? Perhaps they are also unsettled by scars, orange peel skin or stretch marks. Many people simply do not feel comfortable in their bodies. This goes so far that they don’t want to show it to anyone. Especially not in the sauna, where everyone is naked.

But some also worry about who will be sweating with them. The trigger for such concerns are experiences from the past. Perhaps he or she has experienced being stared at unpleasantly on the wooden benches. Or he or she has been splashed with someone else’s sweat. An idea that even die-hard sauna fans might find repulsive.

But you won’t find all this out without talking. So if someone avoids going to the sauna with you, talk to him or her about it. If he or she doesn’t want to sauna for the reasons mentioned above, the solution may be pretty simple. Invite the fearful person to a private sauna party. Here the setting is protected, everyone knows each other. So it’s easier to drop the covers. Plus, no one needs to fear the stares of other guests here. Perhaps this one sauna party is the beginning of a great sauna love affair.

For some it is just too tight

But there are also those for whom such a private setting is nothing. After all, the saunas in this case are quite small. For people who suffer from claustrophobia, this is absolutely nothing. For them, the actually beautiful hours on the wooden benches would be sheer horror. It’s cramped, the walls are close, and then it’s also hot. A situation that is worse than in the elevator, in the ski lift or in a crowded bus, because here you are also naked.

Such fears, by the way, do not have to have anything to do with the actual situation. It can also be that the life situation makes people anxious. Maybe he is under a lot of stress at work, is unhappy in his relationship, or is dealing with an unresolved conflict.

This is where you are likely to reach your limits with your friendly advice. It doesn’t help to talk the person down. Especially if he used to be a passionate sauna-goer, the problem lies deeper. Offer him a sympathetic ear. But you should leave the actual work to an experienced therapist. But don’t badger anyone. Offer your help, but do not be disappointed if it is not accepted.

Sometimes a little slap helps

Most of the time, however, the reasons for the fear of the sauna are not so deep. For many people, it’s simply a new situation that they don’t necessarily want to face. And it’s not that incomprehensible, after all, everyone is naked in the sauna, and it’s hot to boot. Take your friends by the hand, often even small things help.

Which sauna is suitable for me?

For example, you should not go to the hot Finnish sauna first. The dry heat overwhelms many newcomers. Visit the Sanarium® instead. Here it is also warm, the heat is healthy, but still beginners will feel comfortable here. The steam room can also be a good “gateway drug.” As in the Sanarium®, it doesn’t get particularly warm here. Plus, the steam clouds your vision, and it’s not as hard to be naked around strangers.

If your partner or friend feels uncomfortable in confined spaces, choose a sauna with a glass wall or large windows. They create the impression of space. This also keeps the other guests at a distance mentally.

Safety concerns

Sometimes, however, sauna anxiety has nothing to do with confinement, heat, or nudity. Some people are simply concerned about safety. After all, there are many crime shows on television that show people being killed in the sauna. Just lock the door and after a few hours the victim is dead. A creepy thought that many just can’t get rid of. This is especially the case when it comes to a party in a private sauna.

But these concerns are completely out of place, you should explain that to your friend. That you don’t want to kill him, hopefully he knows. But you couldn’t do that easily either. After all, most modern home saunas turn off all by themselves after a while. Show him this mechanism – and give him carefree hours in the cozy warmth.

Eight tips against sauna anxiety

We have already given you some advice against the fear of the sauna, which will help in certain cases. But there are also eight general tips that help against the fear of the sweat lodge.

  1. Listen to music: in the silence, you are all alone with your thoughts, and they can circle around the fear. Music breaks that silence.
  2. Sit at the exit: this way you always feel that you could leave the sauna if the worst happens.
  3. Gather Know: The more you know about the healthy pleasure, the more enjoyable it will be for you.
  4. Trust in the power of scents: scents like lavender have a relaxing and anxiety-relieving effect. Put them to good use during an infusion.
  5. Pay attention to timing: Don’t put yourself under pressure and choose a quiet day for your first sauna visit.
  6. Take friends with you: You’ll feel much safer if you’re not alone.
  7. Talk to friends: Talking out your fears will help you overcome them more easily.
  8. Arrange checks: If you’re sweating alone, ask a friend to check in after a while to make sure everything is still good. This will help you get through the first few rounds on the wooden bench.


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