While steam rooms are generally associated with being able to provide excellent health benefits, making your steam room session last too long could be dangerous for your health.
The best results are usually achieved when people use a steam room every other day for a short session, but just how long should you stay in a steam room?
HOW LONG SHOULD YOU STAY IN A STEAM ROOM?
While some people are known to spend up to 45 minutes in a steam room every day, experts recommend that you only use a steam room for between 15 to 20 minutes.
If you spend too much time in a steam room, you could become severely dehydrated, which could lead to heatstroke, heat exhaustion, and in some serious cases, even death.
BENEFITS OF STEAM ROOMS
A short steam room session every other day can provide you with health benefits such as:
IMPROVES POST-WORKOUT RECOVERY
One of the most common reasons people make use of a steam room is to help them recover from a workout. Many people experience Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness or DOMS the day after a workout.
However, using a steam room right after your workout can significantly reduce the muscle soreness and fatigue you might feel the day after you work out.
This is owing to the fact that the moist heat in steam rooms loosens your muscles up. A shorter steam room session is generally better after a workout, as you will likely already be slightly dehydrated.
HELPS WITH SKIN HEALTH
The moist heat from a steam room is an excellent drawing agent for blackheads, as the extreme heat in a steam room causes your pores to open up and the oil and dirt within them to soften.
Steam rooms also cause you to sweat profusely, so your pores become unblocked, and you pass all of the oil and dirt that was clogging your pores, effectively eliminating many of the blackheads you might have had.
If you are prone to acne breakouts as a result of blocked or clogged pores, then a steam room could prevent this from happening. However, this only accounts for the top layer of your skin. Steam rooms will not be able to help cystic acne.
Any broken skin you might have will also be healed easier, even if this is from acne, so steam rooms can significantly improve your skin health. Staying in a steam room for too long could actually damage your skin health, though, so it is best to limit your time.
IMPROVEMENT IN CIRCULATION
The heat in a steam room causes your small blood vessels called capillaries to dilate through a process called vasodilation.
When vasodilation occurs, your blood circulation and blood flow are improved significantly, as your veins are now able to pump blood more easily.
Heat therapy is also known to lower blood pressure, as it encourages your body to produce the hormone aldosterone, which is in charge of blood pressure regulation in the body.
Steam room sessions are known to reduce stress and make you relax, but you should not allow this to encourage you to stay in the heated room for longer than 15 to 20 minutes.
A steam sauna session can greatly reduce the amount of cortisol in your body, which is the hormone your body releases when you are stressed.
This can make you feel much more relaxed, as the steam room also loosens your muscles and can cause you to release endorphins, which are hormones that make you feel good.
LOOSENS NASAL CONGESTION
Wet heat and the condensation that comes from it are extremely efficient at clearing a blocked nasal passage.
The moist heat stimulates your mucous membrane and loosens any phlegm that might be sitting in the back of your throat or nasal passage.
If you have a fever along with blocked sinuses, you should not use a steam room for too long, as this can only put your body under more stress and cause issues with your physical health.
If you plan on using a steam room to help clear your sinus when you are sick, you should only stay in the room long enough to loosen the phlegm in your nasal passage.
STRENGTHENS IMMUNE SYSTEM
The wet heat from a steam sauna or a steam room encourages your body to produce leukocytes, which are the cells that your body makes use of to fight infection, bacteria, and other foreign bodies.
Once again, using steam rooms when you are sick is not recommended, and short sessions every other day will yield the best results.
After a while of doing this, you should notice that your immune system will have been strengthened, and you will likely become sick less often.
HELPS TO BURN CALORIES
A steam sauna session will not encourage any weight loss on the part of your body, but if you use a steam room after a workout, it can help you to burn more calories by increasing your heart rate.
Steam rooms will not burn any fat, and any weight loss you experience will be water weight that you will soon regain once your body has rehydrated.
EASES STIFF JOINTS
Using moist or dry heat on a stiff joint can help it to feel significantly more loose and flexible. Incorporating a short steam sauna session before you work out could help prevent you from getting injured.
Staying in the steam room for too long before your workout could be detrimental, as it could dehydrate you and cause you to feel fatigued.
A shorter session will loosen your joints and allow you to work out without any issues.
HOW OFTEN SHOULD YOU USE A STEAM ROOM?
The best results are yielded from steam therapy when it is used every other day in short sessions. Using a steam room every day could reduce the benefits that you could receive from the treatment.
Your body may build a tolerance, and steam room therapy may be less effective at ridding you of stress. Using a steam room every day could also cause you to have a higher chance of receiving adverse effects from the treatment.
That being said, having a short steam sauna session every day will not harm your health in any way, so long as you drink plenty of water beforehand and are not feeling sick in any way.
Most experts recommend that you should only stay in a steam room for 15 to 20 minutes at most.
However, depending on your tolerance to heat and how hydrated you are, it will likely not be unhealthy for you to spend more time in a steam room without experiencing any adverse effects.
Before using a steam room, you should always ensure you stay hydrated and have consulted with a doctor beforehand to check if it will be safe for you to use a steam room.
Older people and pregnant women are generally always discouraged from using steam rooms, as they can have adverse effects on their health.
If you’re interested in some of the benefits of using a steam room, why not book today to try it out for yourself?