Over 50 million Americans suffer from autoimmune diseases like lupus, as reported by The American Autoimmune Related Disease Association (AARDA).
There is no cure for lupus, but there are treatments that can help manage the symptoms. One of which is the use of infrared saunas.
A lot of people have recently been using this therapy to boost their immune systems.
In this blog post, we will discuss lupus and infrared sauna therapy, and what you need to know before trying it out yourself!
- 1 What Happens To Your Body When You Have Lupus?
- 2 Does Infrared Sauna Therapy Work On Autoimmune Diseases Like Lupus?
- 3 How Infrared Saunas Help Lupus Patients
- 3.1 Promote Detoxification
- 3.2 Boost The Immune System
- 3.4 Offer Pain Relief
- 3.5 Improve Circulation
- 3.6 Improve Sleep Quality
- 3.7 Other Benefits Of Infrared Heat Therapy
- 4 Studies Proving Infrared Heat Works To Relieve Lupus
- 5 Recommended Frequency Of Infrared Sauna Sessions For Lupus Patients
- 6 Do Infrared Saunas Work Better Than Traditional Saunas For Autoimmune Diseases?
- 7 Far-Infrared Light Vs. Near-Infrared Light
- 8 Risks Associated With Infrared Heat Therapy For Lupus Patients
- 9 Lupus And Infrared Sauna: Tips You Need To Know Before Getting Started
- 9.1 Tip #1: Stay Hydrated
- 9.2 Tip #2: Avoid Too Much Heat
- 9.3 Tip #3: Follow The Safety Guidelines
- 9.4 Tip #4: Watch The Children
- 9.5 Tip #5: Avoid Too Many Oils And Lotions
- 10 Conclusion
What Happens To Your Body When You Have Lupus?
Lupus is an autoimmune disease that may affect several organs in the body. The most common areas it damages include the skin, joints, and internal organs such as your heart and kidneys.
When you have lupus, your immune system attacks healthy cells and tissues.
This can lead to inflammation, swelling, and pain. Symptoms of lupus vary from person to person but can include fever, fatigue, joint pain, skin lesions, and more.
Does Infrared Sauna Therapy Work On Autoimmune Diseases Like Lupus?
Infrared saunas use heat to produce infrared radiation. This radiation penetrates the skin and heats up the muscles and tissues underneath. The infrared heat causes the core body temperature to elevate, helping release toxins and help improve circulation.
Many lupus patients claim to find relief with regular infrared sauna sessions. However, further studies or scientific pieces of evidence are needed to prove the direct impact of infrared heat on lupus and other autoimmune illnesses.
How Infrared Saunas Help Lupus Patients
Infrared sauna use is generally thought to be helpful for a patient with autoimmune disease because it can help improve circulation, reduce inflammation, enhance the detoxification process, and more.
The infrared light waves penetrate the skin and cause your body temperature to rise, hence, helping your sweat more.
The sweat then carries toxins out of the body. This process can help improve symptoms like joint pain, fatigue, and skin lesions.
Boost The Immune System
The high temperatures in an infrared sauna can help kill bacteria and viruses, as well as increase the production of white blood cells. This can boost your immune system and help fight infection.
Reduce Stress & Fatigue
Lupus can take a toll on the body and make it hard to function at times because of how much energy you need just to survive each day without feeling sick or exhausted all the time, but infrared sauna therapy may be able to help.
Infrared light waves penetrate into skin tissue where they heat up blood vessels which increases circulation throughout your body.
This can help patients suffering from fatigue and stress due to lupus flare-ups because their bodies are able to get more oxygenated blood delivered quickly!
Offer Pain Relief
Infrared therapy is said to offer lupus patients relief from chronic pain, joint pain, muscle spasms, and inflammation. Infrared radiation heats up the muscles underneath your skin which causes them to relax and loosen.
This helps reduce stiffness in joints that are often associated with lupus as well as provides overall pain relief for lupus sufferers!
The heat from the infrared sauna will cause your blood vessels to dilate, which improves circulation. Better circulation means more oxygen and nutrients are delivered to the body’s cells, and toxins are removed faster.
Improve Sleep Quality
Infrared saunas have been shown in studies done on rheumatoid arthritis patients that infrared light therapy helps improve sleep quality.
This is done by reducing stress and improving circulation throughout your body which allows lupus sufferers who struggle with insomnia due to disease flares up or chronic pain caused by lupus-related issues like fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) to get better rest at night time as well!
Other Benefits Of Infrared Heat Therapy
• Increased energy
• Improved skin health
• Weight loss
• Reduced high blood pressure
Studies Proving Infrared Heat Works To Relieve Lupus
Not enough scientific evidence or studies have been found yet proving whether or not lupus benefit from regular sauna use. However, many lupus sufferers do find relief.
Some lupus patients also find that infrared saunas help them feel more energized and less fatigued. One study found that lupus patients who used infrared therapy for 15 minutes twice a week reported fewer symptoms of lupus than those who did not use the therapy.
Another small study showed promising results when lupus patients were given regular infrared heat treatments over time: they experienced decreased fatigue, improved moods and sleep quality, as well as better overall health!
Recommended Frequency Of Infrared Sauna Sessions For Lupus Patients
Many patients find that spending around 15 minutes in an infrared sauna three times a week is beneficial, but always listen to your body and adjust accordingly!
Do Infrared Saunas Work Better Than Traditional Saunas For Autoimmune Diseases?
Traditional saunas use dry heat to produce steam. This can be a more intense heat than what you would find in an infrared sauna, and some people find it too hot.
Infrared saunas are said to be gentler on the body, making them a good choice for people with autoimmune diseases like lupus.
Some people also find that infrared radiation penetrates deeper into the skin than traditional steam saunas, which can help release more toxins.
There are also some sauna users who find that regular infrared sauna therapy helps them manage their lupus better than traditional treatments alone. However, more research is needed to confirm these findings.
Far-Infrared Light Vs. Near-Infrared Light
It’s important to understand the difference between near-infrared light and far-infrared light.
Near-infrared light is a lower frequency than far-infrared light getting, so it doesn’t penetrate as deep into the skin. Far infrared light penetrates deeper and provides more benefits for lupus patients.
So, if you’re considering using infrared sauna therapy to help treat your lupus, make sure you choose a far-infrared sauna.
Risks Associated With Infrared Heat Therapy For Lupus Patients
Just as with any other type of medical treatment, there are some risks associated with infrared sauna therapy when used to treat lupus symptoms.
Some potential risks of a sauna session include:
• Increased body temperature (hyperthermia) could worsen lupus symptoms like joint pain or fatigue.
• Sunburn if you have photosensitivity lupus – a skin sensitivity to sunlight that can cause a red, itchy rash.
• Drying out of the skin if you use the sauna too often. Lupus patients may need to apply moisturizers more frequently if they’re using an infrared sauna regularly.
Lupus And Infrared Sauna: Tips You Need To Know Before Getting Started
If you are considering using an infrared sauna to treat your lupus, be sure you had the green light from a healthcare professional, especially if you’re using sauna along with other lupus treatments.
Your doctor will be able to tell you whether or not this treatment is right for your lupus symptoms and advise on any precautions you should take.
This way he or she can also monitor any changes or reactions in your body while using this type of treatment option with them during those meetings.
If your doctor approves, there are a few things that lupus patients should keep in mind when using an infrared sauna:
Tip #1: Stay Hydrated
Drink plenty of water before and after your session to stay hydrated. It is essential to replenish fluids that are lost in the process of sweating and detoxification. Failure to drink enough water may put you at risk for dehydration, sunburn, and heatstroke.
Tip #2: Avoid Too Much Heat
Avoid extreme heat if possible (such as hot tubs). Heat can worsen lupus symptoms like joint pain or fatigue. In fact, UV light can be harmful to the patient and can stimulate the inflammatory response of the disease. Try taking cool showers after your infrared session.
Tip #3: Follow The Safety Guidelines
Always follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer of your infrared sauna system carefully so that it’s installed correctly and used safely.
Always wear protective clothing like socks with non-slip soles while in the sauna room if lupus patients choose not to take them off while inside there during their sauna sessions.
Tip #4: Watch The Children
Never leave children unattended near an infrared sauna system because they could get burned or injured by falling into the heat source. If the child is a lupus patient, be sure to consult with the physician first.
Tip #5: Avoid Too Many Oils And Lotions
While essential oils may enhance your sauna experience, using excessive oils or lotions on your skin before using a sauna can make you more likely to slip and fall when stepping out of one. Be sure to apply just the right amount.
If lupus patients have medications that need to be applied topically, do so after exiting from their session time frame (i.e., 12 hours).
Saunas have been used as treatments for all sorts of issues over the years from detoxing, pain relief, and improved sleep quality just to name a few so if you suffer from lupus.
Some people have reported that infrared saunas can be helpful for lupus patients because they may help with fatigue and joint pain, though more studies should be conducted to support these claims.
Other studies show that heat therapy can also improve sleep quality, relieve stress, promote relaxation, increase endorphins (also known as happy hormones), release toxins from the skin surface which helps clear acne flare-ups as well!
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Can people with lupus use an infrared sauna? ›
If you have increased photosensitivity due to Lupus, or the medication you are taking, you should get a second opinion before starting infrared sauna therapy. An infrared sauna is considered safe for individuals with Lupus.What should you not do before an infrared sauna? ›
- DO NOT DRINK ALCOHOL BEFORE YOUR SESSION. ...
- DO NOT SIT TOO LONG IF YOU PLAN TO EXERCISE AFTER YOUR INFRARED SAUNA SESSION. ...
- DON'T LEAVE YOUR SAUNA UNTIL YOU FEEL TIRED. ...
- DON'T FORGET TO TAKE A COLD SHOWER AFTER YOUR SESSION.
Infrared saunas are great for people with autoimmune disease because they help reduce inflammation and promote detoxification. Infrared saunas are also great for people who are having a hard time exercising due to their illness.Who should not use a far infrared sauna? ›
Joint Injury - Recent (acute) joint injury should not be heated for the first 48 hours or until the swollen symptoms subside. Joints that are chronically hot and swollen may respond poorly to vigorous heating of any kind.Is Red light good for lupus? ›
You also shouldn't use this therapy if you have lupus. Photodynamic therapy for cancer treatment, however, may come with more potential risks and complications depending on the area of treatment. Swelling in the area of treatment, for example, can cause trouble breathing.Can lupus patients use red light therapy? ›
There is a potential risk of a lupus flare for the person with lupus who uses light therapy for seasonal affective disorder, or SAD. However, if the person demonstrates no photosensitivity, and the SAD is so severe that various therapies are not working, it could be considered.Should you shower right after infrared sauna? ›
However, we do recommend that you should shower after an infrared sauna too. Because you sweat during your session and toxins are released, having a shower after your sauna will help to cleanse the skin and close pores.What should I eat after an infrared sauna? ›
- Pretzels – little sodium replenishment and no oily fats.
- Cheese – dairy protein jives much better at night than meat protein.
- Fruit – natural vitamins and fiber via Granny Smith apples or any fresh fruit.
Relax, recover, refresh
Cooling off after the sauna is important because you can catch a cold if you sweat too much. Sauna-goers should leave enough time to cool down before warming up again. If you can, don't have a shower straight after the sauna. It's better for the body if you cool off in the fresh air first.
The amount of time spent in a sauna detox session may vary depending upon your tolerance and daily activity level. To get your body accustomed to infrared therapy, start with 10-15 minute sessions every other day. Gradually increase towards 40 minute daily sessions in the optimal temperature range.
Do saunas help with inflammation? ›
The concentrated heat in a sauna stimulates circulation with oxygen-rich blood flow which helps reduce inflammation and swelling to alleviate chronic pain. So for those with muscle and joint pain, sauna is a must.Are infrared saunas good for your lungs? ›
Saunas can improve respiratory function
Sauna bathing has been shown to enhance lung capacity and function, potentially resulting in improved breathing for people with respiratory conditions such as asthma and bronchitis, according to the paper.
People should drink about two to four glasses of water after using a sauna. Avoid sauna use if ill: People who are ill should also wait until they recover before using a sauna. Women who are pregnant or those with certain medical conditions, such as low blood pressure, should ask their doctor before sauna use.Who should avoid saunas? ›
Contraindications to sauna bathing include unstable angina pectoris, recent myocardial infarction, and severe aortic stenosis. Sauna bathing is safe, however, for most people with coronary heart disease with stable angina pectoris or old myocardial infarction.Is it OK to sit in an infrared sauna every day? ›
Most facilities that offer infrared sauna treatments recommend using the sauna three to four days per week. If you are healthy and tolerate the four days, you can use the sauna daily.Do LED lights affect lupus? ›
More importantly, LED bulbs do not produce large amounts of UV radiation, at least compared to incandescent and fluorescent bulbs. However, LED bulbs with cool and bright white light may produce shortwave rays. Generally, LED bulbs are better for people with lupus.What is the difference between red light therapy and infrared? ›
Infrared penetrates deeply while red light works on the surface of the skin. Red Light LED produces its effects by stimulating collagen production because 700nm wavelength of Red light therapy is optimal for Collagen I production. While penetrating the skin, Red light LED: Reduces wrinkles.Does infrared light help with inflammation? ›
Photobiomodulation (PBM) also known as low-level level laser therapy is the use of red and near-infrared light to stimulate healing, relieve pain, and reduce inflammation.How long does it take for red light therapy to work on wrinkles? ›
It may not be instant but after each day, you and other people will notice the difference in your skin. In clinical studies, it takes at least 4-6 weeks to see visible results. Be patient. Your body is doing its work to reverse the hands of time.Can red light therapy trigger shingles? ›
Shingles pain? Try laser light therapy - YouTube
Does red light help autoimmune disease? ›
First, light therapy helps to improve immune cells, which is crucial for those with autoimmune disorders. When undergoing red light therapy, cells respond to the wavelengths. Pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α is released from the cells, and leukocytes (white blood cells) can enter the body's tissue to promote healing.Does red light therapy help with autoimmune disease? ›
First, light therapy helps to improve immune cells, which is crucial for those with autoimmune disorders. When undergoing red light therapy, cells respond to the wavelengths. Pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF-α is released from the cells, and leukocytes (white blood cells) can enter the body's tissue to promote healing.Can infrared sauna cause rash? ›
Clean skin ensures that you are not letting any toxins in while you are sweating toxins out. Bare skin is recommended for sauna use, as some ingredients in lotions/creams can react with the heat, causing a rash or burn.What is infrared sauna used for? ›
Many studies have looked at using infrared saunas in the treatment of long-lasting health problems and found some proof that saunas may help. Conditions studied include high blood pressure, heart failure, dementia and Alzheimer's disease, headache, type 2 diabetes, and arthritis.