Based on research, IR sauna benefits allergy-stricken individuals.

IR Sauna Benefits: Dealing With Allergies

Ever struggled with allergies at some point in your life? You’re not alone.

According to Allergy New Zealand, up to a third of the population in New Zealand will have an allergy at one point. 

Tasks like focusing, working, or even just relaxing can be a real chore as watery eyes and non-stop sneezing can prevent you from becoming productive in your day.

Thankfully, an IR sauna benefits those suffering from more chronic symptoms due to its soothing effects, and could even be a potential alternative to over-the-counter medicine such as antihistamines, decongestants, and nasal sprays.

In this article, join Sun Stream Saunas in exploring how infrared saunas can potentially provide a holistic effect for people with allergies by examining the scientific research around them.

How do you define allergies?

Allergy New Zealand explains that allergies are caused by your immune system responding to an otherwise harmless foreign substance (like smoke, dust, pet hair, food, or pollen) as a threat.

When you come into contact with an allergen (a substance that causes an allergic reaction), your immune system triggers a response and starts producing antibodies called Immunoglobulin E (IgE). 

IgE triggers your mast cells to release chemicals called ‘mediators’, including histamine which can cause allergy symptoms within a few minutes. Symptoms may vary depending on the allergen, but some common symptoms may include:

  • Sneezing
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Itchy or watery eyes
  • Itchy throat or ears
  • Rashes or hives
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath or wheezing (in cases of allergic asthma)
  • Swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat in severe allergic reactions (anaphylaxis)

IR Sauna Benefits for Allergies

While over-the-counter (OTC) medicines may relieve acute allergy symptoms, some individuals are concerned with the side effects of their usage. 

OTC allergy medicines in some individuals may cause some side effects such as anxiety, drowsiness, elevated heart rate, and nasal irritation.

IR saunas may be a potential alternative to this issue, as they can naturally open up nasal passages to limit propensity of blockages.

According to a study published in 2020, As sauna temperatures reach around 80-100°C and low humidity (10-20%), the hot and dry air keeps enough moisture to hydrate the mucus in our respiratory tract. This leads to keeping our respiratory system healthy and provide relief to stuffy noses.

Additionally, infrared saunas can help reduce allergy severity through immune regulation, control inflammation, promote tolerance to allergens, clear allergens from the body, and maintain balanced immune responses. 

According to a 2013 study on the effect of a single sauna session on white blood cell profile and cortisol levels, implementation of sessions were seen to boost heat shock proteins (HSP) and white blood cell (WBC) production while simultaneously lowering cortisol.

Both HSP and WBPC help fight off infections, leading to a stronger immune system overall.

Tips to Effectively Use Infrared Saunas For Allergies

If you’re considering utilising infrared saunas to relieve your allergies, here are a few things to consider to maximise your comfort and avoid any severe reactions:

  1. If you’re new to the concept of engaging the product to treat allergies, we recommend starting with five to ten-minute sessions to see how your body reacts and adjust your time from there.
  1. We also recommend hydrating yourself before, during, and after your sauna session with water. 

As IR sauna air is hot and dry, the mucous membranes in your respiratory tract can also become dry and irritated. Water helps to keep them moist,  making breathing easier and reducing irritation.

  1. Lastly, pay attention to the type of IR sauna you’re going to jump into. 

Most models use Western Red Cedar wood on the outside and plywood and/or particleboard on the inside. These types of wood can be highly toxic and can cause allergic reactions when heated.

Our SunStream Sauna models, however, are constructed with premium materials. They are built with 100 percent hypoallergenic Canadian Hemlock wood, USA-made ‘Titebond’ water-based glue, and low-sheen, healthy water-based lacquer to minimise any allergy flare-ups.

Key Takeaways

Both OTC medicine and infrared saunas help in treating allergic reactions. For those curious on its effects, though, there is the potential for its benefits to be gained with repeated, longer term use.

Of course, we recommend talking to your general practitioner first before using one as a precaution. They can provide personalised advice and evaluate if using an infrared sauna is safe for you.

If you would love to purchase a hypoallergenic IR sauna for your home but are unsure of what model is right for you, please don’t hesitate to contact us and let our team assist you.