Alcohol and sauna do not belong together
A wheat beer or a Prosecco can’t hurt. That’s what many sauna fans think and spend their rest breaks at the bar. But that is rather careless. Alcohol in the sauna can be life-threatening. Again and again, the stimulant appears in connection with sauna deaths. Sure, it’s not all that likely that you’ll pop after a wheat beer in the sweat lodge. But it’s there. To help you assess the danger, we’ll explain exactly what happens in your body. Maybe you’ll give up beer and cocktails the next time you go to the sauna.
The heat in the sauna dilates your blood vessels. This is not bad in itself, it is even an intended effect. In this way, more blood flows through your body. This in turn causes your heart rate to drop. You probably also breathe faster and deeper to supply the organism with enough oxygen. The problem is that alcohol causes basically the same thing. It, too, dilates your blood vessels. They are then so permeable that the blood only flows leisurely through your body. In plain language, this means that your blood pressure drops.
Your weak circulation will also cause your heart rate to drop further. The result is a collapse, you will faint. In the worst case, dangerous heart rhythm disturbances will also occur. Your heart can even stop completely. In addition to this danger, there are two other fatal factors.
Dangers under the influence of alcohol
First, alcohol affects your central nervous system. Under the influence of alcohol, you are no longer able to correctly assess dangers. Of course, it depends on the amount. But even after just one beer, your ability to make decisions is massively impaired. So you may no longer notice that you are slowly getting circulatory problems. Because you won’t collapse immediately. The collapse announces itself slowly – with eye flickering, headache, dizziness and nausea.
If you were the master of your senses, you would leave the sweat lodge at the first symptoms. But you are not, when you are drunk. There is a great risk that you will not notice the signs or misinterpret them. If you then remain in the sauna, a fatal chain reaction sets in.
Water deficits are dangerous for the body
In addition, alcohol deprives your body of water. Sweating causes you to lose even more fluid. A dangerous combination. Because this dehydration also puts a massive strain on your circulation. It can happen that you keel over even faster.
You should also pay attention to the other sauna guests. Especially during sauna events, many of them have been drinking. As soon as you notice that one of them is behaving conspicuously, you should approach him. Ask him to leave the sweat lodge. If he does not comply with your request, inform the staff. The staff can take further action.
As soon as you notice someone fainting, you should immediately notify a lifeguard. He or she will administer first aid and notify the rescue service.
Do not panic
Surely, all this sounds very worrying now. But we don’t want to scare you before your next visit to the sauna. There have been very few documented cases of sauna deaths so far. But most of them are related to the consumption of alcohol. That’s why you should keep your hands off this stimulant when taking a sauna. However, there is nothing wrong with a beer after a relaxing day in the sauna.