Suffering from a cold? These bath supplements help.
Your nose is tingling, your feet are cold, your throat is scratchy and your whole body is shivering – a cold is coming! Natural ingredients have been used to treat cold symptoms for thousands of years. One method to make use of these natural ingredients is bathing. The mixture of essential oils and medical plants promises a circulation-promoting and soothing effect which should help to get rid of stress, runny noses, and irritating throats. But, which bath supplements help against colds?
A soothing and relaxing effect
A bath is a miracle weapon against cold symptoms. The bath supplements, including essential oils, dissolve completely into warm water which gets then absorbed through the mucous membranes in our body. This causes the body to sweat and fight bacteria and viruses. Therefore, a cold bath has the following effects on the body:
- Blood circulation in the muscles and skin is improved
- The muscles relax
- Mucus that has already accumulated can be easily coughed up
- Body aches that occur with a flu-like infection subside
- The high heat causes the body temperature to rise slightly, causing an artificial fever and ultimately a soothing effect afterward
When is a bath useful and when is it not?
A bath with the right supplement is especially recommended if a cold is imminent. As already described at the beginning, this can be noticed with a runny nose, shivering, a scratchy throat, a tingling nose, and cold feet. If you already suffer from a cold or the flu you should not take a bath. This also applies if you already have a high fever. In such a situation, a bath has a very stressful effect on the body and can cause dizziness. The same applies to vein problems and asthma.
Should the bath be taken as a full or three-quarter bath?
This question depends on the size of the bathtub. If the tub is large enough for a full bath, it is recommended to use the tub at full capacity. Most bathtubs, however, are just enough for three-quarters of a bath. The arms, knees, and shoulders remain out of the water. Since a three-quarter bath puts less strain on the circulatory system, it is more suitable for people with heart and circulatory problems.
What temperature and duration should the bath have?
The temperature for a bath should be between 32 and 39°C. In general, the bath water can be as hot as you prefer, as long as it feels comfortable. However, lukewarm water should be avoided as the desired effect will not be achieved. People with a circulatory or heart problem should start with a lower temperature and gradually add hot water. The duration of the bath should be around 10 to 20 minutes. During this time the body can warm up sufficiently. However, as soon as the bath begins to feel uncomfortable or exhausting, it's time to get out of the water.
Bath supplements for the cold and flu season – which ingredients help?
For an effective bath, the use of the right bath supplement is necessary. The following natural ingredients are particularly effective and helpful. When choosing a bath supplement against a cold, you should make sure that one or more of the following herbs are included:
Stinging nettles are considered an excellent bath supplement for this kind of bath! They are rich in flavonoids and have a diuretic effect. Used in a bath, these make the body sweat and provide a pleasant warmth.
The most well-known ingredient in bath products specialized in fighting a cold is thyme. Its effect is particularly evident when it comes to persistent colds and coughs. Colds including a lot of coughing and running noses can be soothed easily with a bath including thyme. The thymol contained in thyme also has a very relaxing effect on the bronchi.
A particularly good choice is a bath with eucalyptus! This medical plant helps loosen mucus and thus makes coughing easier. Furthermore, eucalyptus oil can also be absorbed through the mucous membranes. This means it has an antispasmodic and stress-reducing effect. Eucalyptus is also very effective at preventing bacteria from growing and spreading.
Camphor has a very positive effect on the respiratory tract. It is a real miracle weapon, especially for very persistent secretions. It also offers support for weak circulation and blood pressure.
Pine is particularly rich in essential oils. It has a very characteristic scent and thus provides a pleasant spiciness during the bath.
What should be done immediately after a cold bath?
After a soothing bath, the blood vessels are dilated. This lowers blood pressure and possibly also weakens your circulation. Therefore, you should get out of the bath slowly. A secure footing and holding onto a handle are therefore highly recommended. The warm water can cause dry, itchy, or tight skin. This is why you should apply a moisturizing body lotion after the bath. Then you cuddle up on your couch or bed and make sure you have it as warm as possible so that the body can regenerate.
Can pregnant women also use bath supplements against colds?
Pregnant women who are about to catch a cold have to watch out for bath supplements containing essential oils. Essential oils should be strictly avoided during pregnancy. Using them, the circulatory system will be put under too much strain which can furthermore cause contractions.
However, bathing itself is not generally forbidden during a healthy pregnancy. Although it shouldn't be a bath containing essential oils, a bubble bath with a warm cup of tea can be enjoyed without hesitations.
Can you use a bath supplement containing essential oils if you have varicose veins?
Yes, you can. It should be noted, however, that the vessels are dilated by the high temperature of the water. This promotes the development of varicose veins, which is why your legs should be rinsed with cold water immediately after a bath. Make sure to cuddle up under a warm blanket after you are dry to help your body regenerate.