Russian Bathhouse or Finnish Sauna?

The term “bathhouse” in Latin means “getting rid of sadness, pain, and ailment”. In ancient Greece, the bathhouses were used not just to bath, but also held meetings and friendly conversations. Since ancient times, the bathhouse considered one of the means that has a healing effect. Nowadays, the bath is also popular. It has both preventive and therapeutic value.

When you enter the steam-room, you first catch a breath from a strong steam, but then the temperature becomes comfortable and there is a desire to lie higher. For beginners, it is difficult to withstand this inferno at first, but gradually you get used to it. Bath procedures work very well on the entire body, including nervous system, muscles, and skin. The skin is renewing in the bath; the dead cells are peeling off.

Sweat and sebaceous glands begin work harder in the steam-room, vascular dilation occurs, blood circulation is accelerated, the skin becomes more elastic. Bathhouse replaces many cosmetic procedures for women. Steam contributes to smoothing wrinkles, the skin takes on a radiant appearance.

Excessive sweating in the bathhouse contributes to toxins removal, excreting; the skin becomes clean and regenerated. The activity of the heart and lungs is enhanced, the overall endurance of the body increases. With fatigue, the ability of muscles to relax is reduced, and lactic acid accumulates in them. Bath recovers strength of the tired muscles, as the high temperature reduces the amount of lactic acid in the muscles. Therefore, performance recovers very quickly. Bath procedures normalize metabolism, treat rheumatism of the joints and chronic radiculitis, as well as colds.

It has long been proven that Russian bathhouses have a beneficial effect on humans. However, it is very important not to overdo. It is recommended to bath 1–2 times a week, even for those who go to the bath all the time. Older people should exercise particular caution; they can stay in the steam-room for no more than 10 minutes.

Tips for novice bath attendants.

Before visiting the steam-room you need to take a warm shower, but you do not need to wet your head. Dry hair will better protect your head from hot steam. It is recommended to wear special bath cap, wetting it periodically with cold water. It is not recommended to wash with soap before a steam-room, as soap washes away sebum, which protects the body from burning sensation. It is very good to use a birch broom in the bath. Lagging the body with a broom is a specific massage, and the steam-room is filling with a pleasant aroma.

Do I need cold shower after steam-room?

Cold water is a good tempering method. However, you need to observe the principle of gradualness, as with other tempering methods. Beginners are not recommended to immediately pour over the cold water after steam-room. First, you need to use water at room temperature, then more cool. Then you can lower the water temperature.

Those who want to lose weight do not have to take a cold shower after steam-room and drink cold water, because cold water stops sweating, which continue for some time after the steam-room. Usually, after bath you want to eat and drink. You need to overcome this desire. You need to drink with little sips. Try to avoid food too high in calories on the day of procedure. You can go to the bathhouse only two hours after meals. Do not go to the bathhouse fasted.

Not everyone can go to the steam-room. This procedure is contraindicated in some chronic diseases, if you have a fever, even a slight one. Bathhouse is contraindicated for pregnant women and babies.

Nowadays, Finnish sauna is also very popular, and it is also called “dry air”. Sauna has a high temperature and low humidity. In the Russian bathhouse, the air in the steam-room warms up to 45-60 degrees, and the humidity is almost 100 percent. In the Finnish sauna, the temperature is much higher – from 70 to 100-110 degrees, and the humidity is no more than 20 percent. Therefore, in a sauna, you can withstand even centigrade temperature more easily and the risk of overheating the body is much less.

The source of heat in the bathhouse or sauna is a stove-heater; the water is poured on the heated stones. Low humidity in sauna is achieved through a high temperature before pouring water. As you know, steam less saturates the air in the steam-room at high temperatures. Humidity, of course, depends on the total amount of water poured into the heater. The material is also important, of which the bathhouse is built. It is much harder to warm up the bathhouse made of stone compared to wood. If you take into account all these factors, then in a typical rural Russian bathhouse you can make something like a Finnish sauna.

When using the bathhouse you need to control your well-being. If after visiting the bathhouse you feel unwell, then you need to consult a doctor who will advise you in what quantities you can use the bath procedures. If you are all right after visiting the bath, then it provided you only with great benefits.