Exploring Alternative Treatment Options for Allergies: My First Spa Day
I've felt pretty congested and itchier for the last couple of weeks. Recently, I had a spa day with some friends planned, which is not something I often do. So, I decided this would be a good opportunity to try something new that may or may not relieve my allergy symptoms.
While I can't say just how effective these alternative treatments are for allergies after just one use and not doing them consistently; I definitely enjoyed the entire experience. I would be open to trying these spa treatments or something different again.
Ionic detox foot bath
The spa facility I went to with my friends offered ionic detox foot baths as a spa treatment option. We decided to try this as part of our treatment package for the day.
This begins with putting your feet into a plastic-lined basin full of warm water. The water has an ionizing machine inside of it. This sends out low volt electric currents, which are supposed to act like a magnet to pull out toxins from the body. A chart on the table next to where I was seated correlated with what part of the body was being "detoxified."
For example, the water in my basin was orange for most of the session and later turned a rusty brown. Orange indicates toxins being pulled from the joints, according to the chart. This made sense to me because my knees and back had been bothering me a bit lately. According to this chart, the brown color of the water indicated detoxifying of the liver, pollutants, and cellular debris. I couldn't make as quick of a connection to that as I did with my knees. However, I'm sensitive to various environmental allergens, and pollutants could be included there.
After our feet were soaked for about 20 minutes, the water was drained, and our feet were rinsed and patted dry. Then, it was time for a massage!
Jade roller massage
During this next part of the day, I was especially excited. I haven't had a massage in many years, and I knew this would feel incredible.
I laid down on a bed of jade rollers for this particular massage. The rollers went up and down the backside of my body, from the top of my head to my ankles. The moving rollers also got warmer as the massage continued. I can't rave enough about how good this felt and how much I want one of these massage beds for myself. It really felt like it rubbed out every knot in my body.
I felt like melted butter by the time my half hour was complete. I didn't notice my nasal congestion or itchy skin at all during the massage. This was unusual for me. Typically, my nose gets clogged almost instantly when I lay down, and heat irritates my skin. Either I was so relaxed I didn't notice, or there is something about massages that helps to alleviate allergy symptoms. Either way, I wasn't complaining!
Our spa day ended with 30 minutes in a salt cave. Also known as halotherapy, you sit in a pink Himalayan salt cave during this session, breathing in the salty air. I was breathing through my nose as best as I could. Unfortunately, my nose got really congested during the first 5 to 10 minutes.
After blowing my nose a few times and really struggling to breathe deep, my nasal passages eventually opened up, and I could breathe better than I had all day. Most of the time, I meditated while relaxing music played through the headset I was given.
Don't underestimate your stress levels
Overall, these treatments had a calming and relaxing effect on me, which I know affects my overall health. I've written about halotherapy before and know some research supports the potential benefits for allergies and skin conditions.
As for the other 2 sessions, I felt the foot bath and massage mostly just relaxed me. I can't say whether it did anything for my allergies. But at least, even for a short time, my symptoms weren't at the forefront of my mind anymore, and my stress was alleviated.
Either way, I highly recommend anyone who struggles with any sort of allergy symptoms to go for a spa day if it's available to you. Mindset and stress levels greatly affect our physical well-being and allergy symptoms. This experience was a good reminder about how important it is to take a break and relax.
Do you carry an epinephrine auto-injector (EpiPen) with you?