The surface of the skin is covered with hundreds of vents called pores that are tiny little passages to allow waste matter escape from the body.
The skin also acts as a line of defense against invading bacteria. The skin breathes for us and has a wholesome effect on circulation and metabolism.
Treatment with hot water increases circulation and forces toxins from the body. Cold water reduces swelling and inflammation. By applying alternating hot and cold water to the body can stimulate the adrenal and endocrine glands, reduce congestion and aleviate inflammation.
There are Sitz baths (sitting in hot water with your feet in cold water then alternating.) Hot and cold compresses, hot and cold baths, saunas, showers and steambaths, Thalassatheraphy (treatment with sea water) and whirlpools.
Try soaking for 15 mins in a hot bath and then stand up and take a quick cold shower to close the pores of the skin and invigorate the body. The same principle can be applied to sitz baths and footbaths.
Hot baths are enervating
Warm baths are pleasant
Cold baths are stimulating
Here are a few ideas for herbal baths:
Full soak bath
1. Take a minimum of 1/2 cup of herbs simmer in 1 quart of water for 10-20 minutes
2. While the herbs are simmering take a quick shower to remove surface dirt.
3. Fill the tub with hot water. Strain the decaction and pour the herb liqid into the tub.
4. Soak for 20-30 minutes. You can take the residue of herbs and place then in a cloth and close up with a rubber band then rub your skin with it.
You can also put the herbs directly into the tub and soak.
If you don't like soaking in the tub
!. Place a large handful of herbs in a couple of cups of boiling water and simmer for 10- 20 minutes. Strain.
2. Shower off your body
3. Wrap the herbs in a cloth and rub the body vigorously.
4. Use the liquid to rinse.
This is very invigorating and an easy method to use when in a hurry.
Wrap a large handful of herbs in a cloth and tie securely. Place the bag right under the spout or head of the shower and let the hot water run through it.
Try Thyme, Lavender and Rosemary or Lemon Grass and Mint.