Written by :- Dr. Rukmani Nair
Steam Bath for Health
Steam can be given generally or specifically to the whole body or to some particular parts of the body. Thus there are verities of steam arrangements such as, steam cabins, facial sauna, steam inhalers and local steam applications.
The steam cabin is made specially for giving steam to the whole body. Steam is generated out side by using a water boiler pot or tank having air tied covering and this boiler is connected to the cabin with a tube through which steam is supplied inside the cabin. There are also some arrangements in which steam is generated inside the cabin itself without using rubber tube. Steam is generated with the help of electricity or gas or kerosene or fuel. The patient is asked to drink 1 to 2 glasses of water first and then, he or she sits quite naked inside the cabin keeping the head free outside the cabin. The temperature of the moist inside steam cabin is 1080 F. The temperature of the bath is controlled by regulating process or by allowing the steam to escape form inside the cabin. The patient’s head is protected from heat by pouring cold water or by keeping a small wet towel on the head. No vapour is allowed to escape around the neck and a towel is used around the neck to protect it. This is a precautionary measure to avoid the possibilities of fainting and giddiness. In summer a short cold body bath or had wash with cold chest pack is used before entering inside the cabin. In winter, hot foot bath can be given along with steam bath to the persons who usually suffer from cold feet. The person is allowed to sit inside until he gets good perspiration with drops of water falls from the body. But the duration of the bath should not exceed 30 minutes. In summer one can hardly sit for taking steam for 10 to 15 minutes. This bath is always given in the presence of a trained or experienced person. Immediately after steam bath the person is allowed to take a cold shower bath or short duration, giving food friction to take a cold shower bath or short duration, giving good friction to the body. A warm bath is also allowed to take after steam bath. At home steam cabins are not readily available. In such cases, a small water pot or tank which has got a side opening to come out steam can be used for heating water and it is kept above a burner. The side opening of the boiler connected with a small rubber tube and is kept around the person and the above hollow portion is covered with a cloth. The person’s head can be outside or inside covering according to one’s own comfortness. After getting proper steam the person can follow the above mentioned bath for getting better reaction.
Such steam arrangements are good to use and also given openly without covering to the wanted areas of the body such as knees, back, legs, hands and neck etc.
Steam bath is useful for obesity, skin disease like psoriasis, eczema and pimples, poly-arthritis, rheumatoid – arthritis , osteo-arthritis, cervical and lumbar sponbdylitis, paralysis, chronic toxaemia, gout, neuralgias, sciatica, asthma, bronchitis, migraine, diabetes etc.
- Relieves stress
- Relaxes the muscles
- Helps flush toxins
- Helps cleanse the skin Promotes deep sleep
- Helps burn calories
- Ease Your Breathing
Weak persons, anaemic persons, nervous persons, during menstruation, diarrhea, hypertension and acute cardiac and renal diseases.