Can I go to the sauna with neurodermatitis?
Going to the sauna with neurodermatitis. Neurodermatitis is characterized by sensitive, very itchy and very dry skin as well as a recurring skin rash. The chronic disease progresses in episodes of varying severity, which begin as acute inflammations of specific skin regions. The reddened, swollen and weeping eczema crusts over after some time and eventually heals. A neurodermatitis flare-up can be triggered by different provocation factors (triggers).
- Various foods such as wheat, cow’s milk products, poultry, pork, fish, and eggs. Carrots, tomatoes, and soy can also trigger a flare. Avoid citrus fruits, nuts, alcohol, and coffee and black tea.
- Garments made of synthetic fibers are not beneficial for atopic dermatitis. Also woolen clothing such as scarves, hats, sweaters, or tights that are made of wool should not be worn.
- Wrong skin care – Neurodermatitis sufferers need a lot of care. The skin should be regularly supplied with fat and moisture.
- Heat or strong sunlight influence the skin dryness and can trigger relapses.
- Skin infections caused by viruses, bacteria, or fungi.
- Strong temperature fluctuations or low humidity, as well as cold winter weather or dry heating air can lead to the worsening of neurodermatitis.
- Stress – positive or negative stress also affects the immune system.
- Unhealthy sweating can also increase itching.
- Hormonal factors include menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause.
- Active or passive smoking can trigger or even exacerbate atopic dermatitis flare-ups.
If you want to prevent a neurodermatitis flare-up, you should avoid these triggering factors as much as possible. But stop. Sauna fans are surely shocked that sweat appears on this list. But don’t panic, it has nothing to do with healthy sweating – at least as long as it doesn’t become too much. What is meant is the sweat that gets trapped between the watch and the wrist during sports, for example. The problem in these cases is less the body fluid itself. The devil is much more in clothes and accessories.
Sauna – effect on the skin
The heat stimulus opens the pores, improves blood circulation and promotes purification of the upper layer of the skin (epidermis). The horny layer swells, so that dead skin cells come off more easily and are removed during the shower. Regular sauna sessions also improve the body’s moisture and lipid balance.
As a result, the skin remains more supple and retains moisture much better than people who shy away from sauna visits. In addition, the protective acid mantle of the epidermis is restored. An intact barrier makes it much harder for pathogens and harmful substances to penetrate the skin. For this reason, people with dry and flaky skin benefit especially from the heat in the sauna cabin.
Neurodermatitis and sauna
At first glance, the gentle cleansing of the skin while sweating seems to be a real blessing for neurodermatitis patients. For the organism, however, sauna sessions mean not only relaxation but also stress. The alternating heat and cold stimuli are an optimal vascular training for healthy people. For neurodermatitis sufferers, however, this can provoke an attack of the disease.
Alternative to the Finnish sauna
For those affected, it is important to know the individual triggers. If strong temperature fluctuations, heat, dry air or sweat trigger the neurodermatitis symptoms, not all types of sauna cabins are recommended. A low-temperature sauna (biosauna, steam bath, sanarium) can be a useful alternative to the Finnish sauna. Neurodermatitis sufferers should enjoy all infusions with caution. Fragrances contained in the infusions reach the skin via the water vapor. There, together with the heat stimulus, they can provoke a strong skin reaction. To avoid the risk of a new flare-up, those affected should avoid the infusion experience altogether.
Skin care after the sauna
In the case of neurodermatitis, the moisture and fat losses of the skin are not compensated as well as in healthy people. Therefore, proper skin care after the sauna session is particularly important. Since the acute inflammations often intensify due to the heat, taking a sauna during a neurodermatitis flare-up is taboo. In addition, the sore skin areas burn and itch unpleasantly due to the sweating. To be on the safe side, neurodermatitis sufferers should discuss any objections with their family doctor before visiting the sauna.
Conclusion of the editors, part 1.
Neurodermatitis sufferers can benefit from the health-promoting effect of the sauna. However, this is not true in every case. It is important to know the individual triggers of acute disease episodes and to take them into account when taking a sauna. Regular sauna sessions in the right cabin as well as consistent skin care not only improve the skin’s appearance in the case of neurodermatitis. In addition, they increase the physical and mental well-being.
Natural home remedies against neurodermatitis
- Healing clay disinfects and has a calming effect on inflamed skin.
- Dead sea ointment moisturizes the skin.
- Grandma’s home remedy, St. John’s wort is excellent against neurodermatitis.
- A sea salt bath also relaxes the skin, but this should be mixed regularly as an additive in the bath water.
- The plant aloe vera has turned out to be a wonder weapon against neurodermatitis. It is anti-inflammatory and also moisturizes the skin.
- Sunlight activates skin cells and initiates the skin renewal process.
- Healthy diet strengthens the body against infections and can prevent a recurrence.
- One of the best home remedies for atopic dermatitis is tea tree oil. This oil relieves itching and fights infection-causing bacteria.
How else can neurodermatitis be relieved?
We have seen that neurodermatitis patients can certainly benefit from the health-promoting effects of the sauna. However, the gentle heat is not effective against all annoying symptoms. That’s why many sufferers want even more help – and it’s available. In the following article, we will show you that you do not always have to resort to expensive creams. There are remedies that work quite incidentally during a relaxing day at the spa. You can even use them relatively easily at home. We are talking about salt and brine. Both are found in nature. Of course, neither one nor the other can perform miracles. However, they can certainly alleviate the symptoms significantly.
Soothe neurodermatitis with brine and salt
With salt, Mother Nature has created a multi-talent. Take a look at the homepage of your favorite spa. Here you will find possible applications of the healing water. Mostly joint problems, allergies, asthma as well as skin diseases like psoriasis, neurodermatitis, acne and other eczema are listed here. This is not a marketing ploy by the operator, who wants to promote the water as a cure. The effect has already been proven in many studies. The effect on neurodermatitis patients has been particularly well researched. Many sufferers have already plunged into the salty waters and noticed a significant alleviation of symptoms. Even when nothing else seemed to help.
Sometimes, however, the symptoms are too severe. Then splashing around in the community pool won’t help. You don’t have to do without it, but you should take advantage of additional therapy offers. In most cases, you have the option of booking so-called tub baths. Here you can bathe in pleasantly warm water in a private atmosphere. This contains brine in a very high concentration and therefore works quite effectively.
What is brine photo therapy?
Even more effective is the so-called brine photo therapy. Here, patients go to the tanning bed directly after the bath. The UV light can have an even stronger effect due to the salt crust. Together, light and salt are an unbeatable team against the complaints of neurodermatitis sufferers. In order for the eczema to really disappear permanently, you should use this therapy regularly over two to three weeks. By the way, the brine photo therapy is covered by health insurance if it is prescribed by a doctor.
However, the salty water is not only used externally. Just think of the large spas such as Bad Kissingen and Karlsbad. Here there are so-called Wandelhallen. The spa guests walk through these halls with cups in their hands – and drink the salty water. It’s not delicious, by the way, but it helps. You don’t have to go that far. Just ask at the spa near you. Often these small establishments also offer so-called drinking cures. You will have to do without the majestic halls. You can still enjoy the healing effect.
Healing effect for the troubled skin
But why does salt have such a positive effect? Let’s first take a look at what neurodermatitis actually is. It is a disease of the immune system. This in turn is demonstrably strengthened by the use of a brine bath. In addition, there is a disinfecting effect. However, this can also be disruptive. Namely, if the eczema has caused open wounds. Then it burns. In addition, the brine bath moisturizes the skin. By the way, this effect even lasts for a while. The brine penetrates the skin and converts into ions, which in turn have a positive effect on moisturizing.
But the brine bath has a second, often underestimated effect: it is quite relaxing. For several hours, you can simply shake off the stress of everyday life. This tranquility alone can alleviate symptoms. Scientists have found out namely that it is mainly the stress that makes eczema sprout in adults.
In this respect, regular baths in the spa also have a very good preventive effect. If you suffer from skin diseases, you should make the bath day a fixed part of your weekly program. In this way, you may prevent relapses for a long period of time. Some patients also report that symptoms are less severe when you bathe regularly.
Good for the respiratory tract
Brine is not only good for the skin, however. It also exerts its healing effects on the respiratory tract – and can alleviate conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, and sinusitis. Anyone who has respiratory problems already benefits from a bath in the brine pool. This is because the vapors rise up here and directly affect the respiratory tract.
That already brings a lot. Even better is to nebulize the brine. You usually have two options for this in the spa. First, there are saunas in which brine-containing water evaporates on the hot stones. Here, you additionally benefit from the relatively humid air, which is able to cleanse respiratory tracts. But sometimes a visit to the sauna is not possible. Especially asthmatics shy away from it. Then so-called brine grottos can help. Here, brine-containing water is nebulized with special devices without any heat.
A third option is to stay in a natural or artificial salt tunnel. These are rooms that are simply lined with salt. The crystals are so fine that they disperse into the air all by themselves. You don’t need to do anything but inhale deeply. The salty air will do the rest. As a rule, you should spend about half an hour in such a salt tunnel.
Use at home
However, many neurodermatitis patients shy away from going to the public bath. The shame of showing the body covered with eczema to the public is too great. In such cases, salt baths at home can help. Nothing else is used here than grandma’s good old bath salts. You can still buy them in any drugstore. Simply prepare a bath according to the package instructions and enjoy it for at least half an hour. How often you get into the bath is up to you. About twice a week is optimal. However, if you like, and it do you good, you can also enjoy a bath more frequently.
In addition, you can buy an ultrasonic nebulizer. These devices can now also be found in drugstores or in well-stocked online stores. You fill this nebulizer with water containing brine. The particles settle on the skin and help to relieve the symptoms. In addition, this application also has a healing effect for the respiratory tract.
Who should not use brine baths?
As good as brine baths are for damaged skin, in some cases they also do harm. This applies in the first place if the skin is injured over a large area. In such cases, spending time in the salty water would be torture for the patient, as the open wounds would burn.
Patients with acute rheumatic attacks should also wait before entering the brine bath. Special care should be taken if you suffer from a chronic cardiovascular disease. Then the doctor must assess whether a bath is possible or not.
It is true that the brine is said to have a healing effect on kidney ailments. However, patients suffering from chronic kidney disease should definitely talk to their doctor. Under certain circumstances, bathing in the salty, warm water may have a harmful effect in this case.
Editorial conclusion, part 2.
Try to keep an eye on the triggers of the disease. Strong emotions such as stress or grief play a central role in the occurrence of neurodermatitis. Dry skin is very sensitive to all contacts such as clothing fabrics, cosmetics or strong fragrances. Certain foods that contain preservatives or flavors, nuts, cow’s milk and also wheat flour can trigger an itching flare-up. Neurodermatitis patients react very differently to such triggers. For some patients, a cold, or stress at work can trigger a flare-up. With others against it not.
Important note: The information in no way replaces professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors. The contents of Saunazeit Magazine cannot and must not be used to make independent diagnoses or start treatments.