Sauna with a cold?

Sauna with a cold?

Almost 30 million Germans go to the sauna regularly. In a survey by the German Sauna Association, 74 per cent of those questioned stated that they wanted to strengthen themselves physically. The health-promoting effect of sauna sessions can be proven: Studies have shown that regular sauna sessions strengthen the immune system . But should you also go to the sauna with a cold, or is it harmful to take a sauna if you have a cold?

Sauna when you have a cold?

Headaches, sore throats and body aches are the first signs of a cold. At this time, one should be careful with sauna visits. If the cold is very advanced, avoiding the sauna is better,  especially if your body temperature is high or you have a fever. Because when you have a cold, sweating is considered healthy. But in this situation, the stress from the sauna can be too high for the cardiovascular system.

In this case, you should fight the symptoms of the cold with the usual methods: Wrap up warmly, drink a lot, and get fresh air. Vitamins are essential when you have a cold. If a fever accompanies the cold, antipyretics will help the body recover quickly.

It would help if you did not revisit the sauna until the cold has subsided.

Prevent colds in the sauna.

On the other hand, one should not underestimate the preventive effect of sweating cures when preventing a cold from developing in the first place. Studies have shown that regular sauna sessions strengthen the immune system and make it easier to fight off viruses.

Sweating cures train the body’s heat regulation system. The interplay of heat and cold stimulates the blood vessels in the skin, and the mucous membranes of the airways, and the body learns to adapt better to different temperatures. Heat loss in a cold environment is prevented, and cold viruses can be warded off better. The high temperatures also increase blood flow to the nose and throat. This means that more immune cells can gather there to intercept pathogens.

Regular sauna use also increases the interferon level in the blood. This protein has an immunostimulating and antiviral effect.

Strengthen the immune system in time.

Especially in the cold season, the pathogens lurk where many people meet: in the office, on the bus or in the supermarket. It’s easy for them here: Overheated, poorly ventilated rooms in combination with cold, wet weather are an additional burden on the organism.

It is critical to whip your immune system into shape in good time. In addition to regular sauna sessions, exercise, a balanced diet rich in vitamins and plenty of fluids have a preventative and strengthening effect.


Five tips for going to the sauna

Sauna-goers should observe certain rules :

  1. A sauna session should last at most 12 to 15 minutes.
  2. Two to three repetitions in about two hours are sufficient.
  3. It would help to visit the sauna about once or twice a week.
  4. A brief cold stimulus should follow the heat. To ensure that the body does not cool off due to the cold stimulus but only cools down, short refreshment phases, for example, with a flood shower, are better than a more extended stay in the water.
  5. Taking a sauna with a full stomach can overload the circulatory system.

Above all, it is important not to regard the sauna as a compulsory program but to feel good about it, to take enough time and to enjoy it. However, going to the sauna is taboo if the cold virus strikes despite prevention.

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