Self Care Series #20
The Healing Ritual of Baths
Warm water, essential oils, candles, and a relaxing soundtrack make the perfect recipe for the modern-day bath, which provides the ultimate stress relief for many people.
In Asia and India, bathing and cleansing was a religious ritual, where the tradition was tied to the healing waters of rivers.
TCM practitioners caught onto the health benefits of baths long ago, as an alternative therapy that’s been passed down and perfected over centuries.
They found that, by adding concoctions of herbs to the water, you can treat both exterior and interior conditions, ranging from skin sores to inflammation and chronic pain.
Because our skin is our body’s largest organ, and because it’s porous, it absorbs whatever is in the water. Your senses will be engaged during a bath: from sight, smell, sound, touch, and even taste.
Here are the health benefits to taking a hot bath
Baths Elevate Mood
Hot baths has a moderate but persistent lift in mood for anyone suffering from depression. According to psychologist Neil Morris, who surveyed 80 people, bathing can diminish feelings of depression and pessimism because "Baths give you...a wonderful combination of isolation, quiet, and comfort." The feelings of closeness we receive from being submerged in warm liquid "gives us connotations of being in the womb, and it is very comforting,"
Quiets the Mind
The act of preparing a bath is meditative. Every preparation to this bath means laying the mental groundwork, making sure you have enough uninterrupted time set aside and thinking about what you want out of it. This may seem strange, but establishing the intent and purpose behind your bath before starting will help determine how to progress. So set your intent before you lower your toes into the warm, scrumptious water.
Boost Immune System naturally
Bath helps accelerates the secretion of sweat glands and accelerates the metabolism of toxins, thereby achieving the effect of detoxification.
The water temperature combined with its pressure on your chest increases your lung capacity and oxygen intake.
A herbal bath can improve blood circulation, lymph circulation, meridian, Chi and blood circulation. This helps to balance the endocrine system, increase immunity, prevent diseases, and hence achieving longevity.
Heal Better & Faster, Mentally and Physically
Soaking in hot water is also known to increase the production of endorphins in your body as well, which help to stimulate your immune system, alleviate pain, and help tissues heal faster if you’re injured.
One study found that when compared to non-oil-containing skin cleansers, bath oil was more effective in improving the skin barrier function for those with mild dry skin.
When you soak yourself in high quality bath oil, your skin can be more moisturized with fewer dry patches compared to nightly showers.
Fight insomnia & improve your sleep with herbs
Many herbs have therapeutic properties when their essentials oils are released in hot water. Based upon the basic theory of traditional Chinese medicine, active ingredients of Chinese herbs are absorbed through the skin acting on the meridians and acupoints to play a therapeutic role.
Lavender oil in particular has always been known for its healing powers. It’s relaxing, stress-reducing, uplifting, and eases headaches. Lavender also has also anti-anxiety effects and decreases premenstrual emotional symptoms. A warm lavender bath is one of the best way to fight insomnia naturally.
We hope you enjoyed this Sunday's read!