A cold sauna is not really a sauna at all. It’s a cold room that offers temperatures as cold as -10 degrees F. Extreme cold can offer health benefits just like traditional saunas. This therapy has been also called the “Snow Room”.
The cold sauna was first developed by a Japanese physician in 1980 as a results-oriented, non-pharmaceutical, alternative therapy for rheumatoid arthritis. Today, doctors are also recommending cold therapy for pain relief and inflammation reduction for those with fibromyalgia, sleep disorders, depressive moods (often associated with pain), multiple sclerosis, sciatica and much more.
The cold sauna is a therapy where the goal is to cool the entire body (creating a systemic boost), to make it actually warm up faster afterwards. The intensity of the cold reduces treatment time; it’s only 3 minutes long.
With zero humidity inside the cold sauna, the body is not stripped of heat as it would be after an ice bath or from an ice pack placed locally. Plus, sans humidity, you do not perceive the cold to be as extreme as it is, and you inhale almost twice the amount of oxygen per breath. Other benefits are said to include:
- Reduction in pain medicine and hypersensitivity to pain
- Improved joint and muscle function, and blood circulation
- Improved nutrient and oxygen supply to muscle tissue
- Improved strength, joint mobility, mental acuity
- Reduce and relieve skin irritation and fatigue
- Improved quality of life
- Benefits effective for 6 months up to one year
Who should not have cold sauna?
- Pregnant women
- Anyone with cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure and asthma