Saunas are more than just a relaxing leisure activity. They have been part of the culture of many countries, especially in cold regions. They are believed to have existed for more than 2,000 years. Traditional saunas are known for their simple ways of controlling humidity and temperature by heating the air around them enough to induce perspiration. It is also said to cleanse the body as well as provide health benefits. In fact, different studies have been conducted to prove its efficiency in treating different chronic illnesses. We cannot deny the allure of having a sauna in our homes, and as saunas become more affordable over time, new options that advertise more health benefits than traditional saunas can provide have begun to appear on the market. And this is how infrared saunas are gaining popularity among the general public.
Everything to know about infrared saunas
Infrared saunas have two different types: the near-infrared sauna and the far-infrared sauna.
A near infrared sauna is a combination of both heat and light therapy. It allows the heat to penetrate up to 9 inches under the skin as it uses infrared light that is closer to the visible spectrum, thus emitting low levels of EMFs while a far-infrared sauna uses the opposite technique. The near-infrared sauna is also known for promoting dermal healing and modest pain relief. Studies also show that near infrared saunas help repair damaged joints and aid wounds faster. This is the reason why a near-infrared sauna is a more popular choice in the market.
Far-infrared saunas make use of heating devices that primarily generate light in the far-infrared spectrum that allows it to penetrate the skin up to 5 mm deep, thus emitting higher levels of EMFs. The overall improvement of cardiovascular health is one of the most significant advantages of far-infrared saunas. This includes a reduction in arrhythmias and induced better circulation, especially for those people who have high BP. Another advantage is that it provides brief relief from the pain and stiffness produced by arthritis.
Infrared saunas are an excellent choice for those who have a high sensitivity to heat, because infrared saunas only aim to heat the person rather than the space. Infrared saunas could keep temperatures between 120 and 150 degrees Fahrenheit, making them more comfortable while still inducing sweat.
Both types of infrared saunas have distinct functions and benefits. They both have the ability to detoxify our bodies, but they vary in “for what treatments” they are used. Near-infrared saunas could help you burn calories and boost your metabolism, as well as decrease your cortisol levels, which is indeed a big help if you want to lose weight.
The benefits are quite appealing and a lot of people will surely opt for and like infrared saunas. However, in things and services, there are always pros and cons. The drawbacks to using infrared saunas, specifically the far infrared treatment are as follows.
One is that they can emit dangerous levels of electromagnetic fields (EMFs). According to research, excessive amounts of EMF exposure may damage your cognitive performance and may cause pathology comparable to Alzheimer’s disease. It may also raise your body temperature, which could result in dehydration and dizziness. It could also cause burns on the skin, or worse, impair you visually. While infrared saunas are defined only by their use of far-infrared radiation, all saunas emit this radiation as a result of the energy input required to produce the heat they need, and frequently it comes in greater quantities. The good news is that some far infrared saunas now include a few tiny LED lights to give near infrared light, which is less powerful than the heat lamp bulbs used in an incandescent bulb sauna.
Infrared saunas are able to mimic the elements of standard saunas to this day, and in comparison to traditional saunas, the use of infrared therapy has gained popularity due to its effective method of heating up a person’s body to induce perspiration without the use of vigorous workouts or humidity that traditional saunas use, whilst being acclaimed as a low-cost alternative to traditional saunas that may provide all of the same benefits and more for a fraction of the cost.
Cost and installation of Infrared Sauna
There are a lot of spas that offer infrared sauna treatments that vary in price, and you may often ask yourself if it’s worth it. Moreover, people are now opting to install one for their own convenience rather than visit spas from time to time. And knowing the right type of sauna that fits your preferences might save you thousands of dollars.
The installation of a near-infrared sauna does not require any professional installation compared to a far-infrared sauna, but in terms of cost, far-infrared saunas are less expensive than near-infrared saunas. This is due in part to the fact that it is a single device to purchase and install, whereas the near-infrared sauna requires you to purchase both the enclosure you need to trap the heat and the lamp that will emit and act as the source of heat. Near-infrared saunas will require the replacement of a bulb that comes with the lamp, and you will need to constantly change the bulbs over time, making it more expensive to maintain. The cost of choosing an infrared sauna still varies, from its brand, warranty, labor costs, etc. In conclusion, a far-infrared sauna is preferable in cost to the near-infrared saunas. Because if we do the math here, the maintenance expenses for the near-infrared saunas will be higher in the long run.
Precautions of Using Infrared Sauna
There are still precautions that you need to consider in whatever sauna you decide to choose. Using a sauna means you will sweat a lot, so make sure you stay hydrated and have yourself checked if you have conditions that should restrict you from using either the standard or infrared unit. Research is still being done every day to know if infrared saunas pose a threat to our health, but when used correctly they have proven to be safe. Even if a recent study suggests that infrared saunas are safe to use, we should still use them with caution.