5 Health Benefits of Baths
For as long as we can remember, baths have been used as a means of relaxation, rejuvenation and aiding overall well being - offering many benefits for both the body and mind. For that reason, we recognise the positive impacts this can have towards a more accomplished and comfortable way of being. For many people who are elderly or have mobility issues, having a bath over a shower is recommended to be the most hassle free experience. Allow us to expand on the 5 health benefits of baths and the advantages it can bring. After all, bathing should be accessible to everyone and at Oak Tree Mobility, our approach towards supporting your health and hygiene is always at the forefront!
“A hot bath in the evening has been shown to be an important and effective way of winding down in the evening, helping you to get deep and restorative sleep.” - Dr Nerina Ramlakhan, Sleep Expert.
1. Relaxation and Stress Relief
One of the primary reasons why people take baths is to relax and reduce stress. Warm water has a significant and soothing effect on the body, which helps relieve any tension in the muscles and stimulates a sense of calmness. If you want to unwind and let go of the stresses of the day, bathing can provide the right support in creating a tranquil environment you didn’t know you needed.
2. Muscle and Joint Relief
Bathing in warm water can provide relief for muscle aches, soreness and joint stiffness. Heat from water helps increase your blood circulation, easing discomfort and aiding you towards healing. It also helps relax your muscles, making it beneficial for those with conditions such as arthritis or fibromyalgia.
3. Improved Sleep
A warm bath before bed is always a good indication for a better sleep. The rise in body temperature during a bath, followed by the subsequent drop in temperature after can help regulate the sleep-wake cycle. The relaxation which is induced by a bath can calm the mind and therefore make it easier to fall asleep and improve your overall sleep quality.
4. Cleansing and Hygiene
Baths are one of the most effective ways to cleanse the body, removing dirt and oils for various skin conditions. This is important for preventing any skin infections, irritation and other dermatological issues, which can be common in individuals with limited mobility who may spend extended periods of time in one position or have difficulty with regular cleaning routines.
5. Respiratory Health
Baths with steam or added inhalants like eucalyptus oil can have a positive impact on respiratory health. The warm, moist air can help individuals with respiratory conditions such as asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Dry air can irritate the airways and trigger some symptoms, but the moisture from baths can help reduce the dryness and encourage easier breathing.
The 5 health benefits of baths explored above are important for any individual. So why should it be restricted for some? Below, we explore ‘How can you keep baths accessible to the elderly and disabled people?’ and we’ll also touch on the hardships that can be faced for individuals.
How can you keep baths accessible to the elderly and disabled people?
Maintaining accessibility to baths is of utmost importance for different individuals with different limitations, as it directly impacts their independence and quality of life. So how can you keep baths accessible to the elderly and disabled people? There are a few solutions and installation requirements that can ensure this runs smoothly.
Slip resistant mats ensure that any individual can avoid any slips, trips or falls in the bath/shower. The mats stay firm on the ground, naturally repelling water and therefore enhancing safety for an individual in their own home.
Grab rails help towards smoothly entering and exiting the bathtub with less hassle. Reducing the risk of falls and taking the pressure of your knees, joints and back can avoid any painful accidents and give you the confidence to bathe with freedom.
A transfer bench, also known as a shower transfer bench or bath transfer bench, is a piece of equipment that allows the user to enter/exit the bathtub with less hassle. The user usually sits on the bench, which straddles the side of the tub, and gradually slides from the outside to the inside of the tub.
Bath lifts are probably the most efficient and freeing pieces of equipment for an individual. If you are looking for an easier way to bathe, the Oak Tree bath lift could change your life, featuring state-of-the-art yet simple-to-use technology to gently lower you into and out of your very own bath.
The installation of the above products are important to take into account. If you’re wondering how can you keep baths accessible to the elderly and disabled people… these solutions play a major role. Those with mobility limitations can harmlessly enjoy the benefits of bathing - and most importantly, with the dignity and freedom that is entitled to them.
What are the mental health benefits of a bath?
Baths can provide a personal sanctuary where you can take time for yourself, away from distractions. It offers an opportunity for self-care and self-reflection. Taking regular baths as an individual with mobility issues has its challenges, however it can be an empowering activity that can encourage your sense of independence and self worth. So what are the mental health benefits of a bath? See the list below
- Stress reduction
- Improved sleep
- Mood enhancement
- Emotional release
- Sensory stimulation
When should I take a hot bath?
The timing of when you should take a hot bath depends on personal preference, however studies suggest that taking a hot bath in the evening or a couple of hours before bedtime are the most favourable. This is because the rise in body temperature followed by a drop afterwards can help induce drowsiness and improve your sleep quality. Other suggestions of when to take a hot bath are:
After Physical Activity
The warm water soothes the sore muscles and reduces inflammation, therefore enhancing relaxation.
During Cold Weather
When the weather is cold, taking a hot bath can be a great way to warm up and feel cosy. It can help boost circulation, relieve stress and improve your mood.
When Feeling Sick
If you have a cold or flu, taking a hot bath can ease symptoms, such as congestion, coughing and body aches. It can also help boost your immune system and boost relaxation.
After a Stressful Day
If you’re having a stressful day, taking a hot bath can be a useful way to relax and reduce tension in your body and your mind. This therefore makes you feel more balanced and provides you with a sense of calm.
When you’re next thinking ‘When should I take a hot bath?’ referring to the above list can help in making your decision. The health and relaxation benefits have been proven to be worth it!
With the valuable insights on the 5 health benefits of baths, it will hopefully ignite a sense of curiosity for many to eventually purchase their very own and to enjoy bathing with pure confidence and comfort! At Oak Tree Mobility, we give you the opportunity to reimburse your confidence and allow you to feel your best self again. Our bath lift is an excellent solution designed to provide comfortable bathing experiences, along with the added advantages of quicker and safer transfers for the ultimate experience.