Submitted by Dr. Shelby Entner
The largest organ in the human body is also the most effective in utilizing the healing benefits of Far Infrared Sauna Therapy (F.I.R.S.T.). Covering over 20 square feet (two square meters), the skin is composed of two main layers, the epidermis and the dermis. The epidermis layer is continually replaced as new cells are being pushed to the surface. The lower layer, the dermis, contains sweat glands, hair follicles, blood vessels and nerve endings. Blood vessels deliver oxygen and nutrients up to the outer level of the skin and also functions in temperature regulation. Our skin is our most visible organ and is considered an indicator of our general health. Many skin conditions have been shown to dramatically improve with the regular use of Far Infrared Sauna Therapy (F.I.R.S.T.)
A far infrared sauna exerts heat at a lower temperature than a regular sauna, ranging between 120 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Using a far infrared sauna can be beneficial in many common skin conditions, ranging from cosmetic improvements to supporting medical conditions. Infrared saunas are thought to be a means of pulling out impurities from the body and may be beneficial to the skin in several ways.
Patients with acne have often exhausted skin care products and oral medications in the search for improving the physical appearance of their skin. Blackheads, enlarged pores and chronic inflammation can be helped with improving circulation to the skin and by helping to remove waste from the body in a more effective way with sweating. By opening the pores and allowing the sebum to drain normally, far infrared saunas help to remove the impurities and to stop bacteria from replicating. Equally important is washing the skin after a session in the far infrared sauna to allow the sebum to remain free and the pores clear of accumulated waste from the sweat.
Eczema is a common condition, affecting over 10% of the population of North America. An inflammation of the epidermis, the term applies to a broad range of symptoms including dryness, redness, itching, crusting, cracking and bleeding. For many patients, eczema is a chronic condition that is simply treated with topical ointments when flared up. However, it is also a symptom of a deeper inflammatory reaction. Helping to support natural anti-inflammatory effects, Far Infrared Sauna Therapy (F.I.R.S.T.) has been shown to support patients with eczema by increasing circulation and elimination thru the skin, supporting a balance of natural oil production, improving overall well being and decreasing stress, a common trigger for eczema patients. Regular visits are necessary to see the optimal benefits of using a far infrared sauna for eczema.
The skin’s ability to function as a healthy barrier and organ is often challenged by our current lifestyles and exposures. Many health conditions show up in our skin and can be the first sign of a deeper health problem. Supporting the skin’s natural ability to detoxify and remove waste can not only help to alleviate issues such as acne and eczema, it can also help to lessen our chronic and degenerative illnesses.