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After just a few days in the sanctuary of a thalasso spa, you’re likely to feel healthier, happier, and more energetic.
“Thalassa” in Greek means “the sea,” so “thalassotherapy” is the therapeutic use of seawater or salt water—as well marine products such as algae, seaweed, and marine mud—to improve health and beauty.
Salt and salt water have been used therapeutically since ancient times. An Egyptian papyrus from 1600 B.C. recommends sea salt for healing infections. In 400 B.C. the ancient Greek physician Hippocrates described numerous seawater remedies, including baths, for colds, digestive problems, and skin care. And an Army doctor in the early Roman empire used “ocean water” to relieve constipation, to kerb bleeding after surgery, and to soften calloused skin.
Through the Middle Ages and into the Renaissance, salt and salt water were dispensed to patients by apothecaries to heal an abundance of ailments. Swiss physician Paracelsus in the 1500s noted the effectiveness of “salt brine” for healing, and for the Elizabethans, salt was “invested with the power of God.” Perhaps this is why Benedictine monks in the 1700s developed thalassotherapy for healing.
Thalassotherapy—or “thalasso”—as we know it was promoted in France in the 1800s when seaside towns in Brittany and elsewhere became popular for bathing. During that same era, German doctors introduced thalassotherapy for heart conditions and nerve diseases at the salt springs of Bad Nauheim. Meanwhile, British physician Dr. Richard Russell encouraged his patients to bathe in salt water, particularly at Brighton, which became a fashionable resort where visitors could “take the [thalassotherapy] cure.”
Thalassotherapy today is used to treat a multitude of health problems, including muscle aches, joint pains, and other ailments involving stiffness, swelling, and tenderness. Health conditions including fatigue, back pain, poor circulation, and arthritis respond remarkably well to thalasso treatments, as do skin disorders such as psoriasis, dermatitis, and eczema. More recently thalasso has also been used for stress relief and weight loss.
Thalassotherapy works because repeated bathing in warm seawater, marine mud, protein-rich algae, and various micronized seaweeds can restore the body’s natural chemical balance. In addition, the warmth of the water promotes healthy muscles and joints, and the salt is beneficial to the skin.
Thalassotherapy rejects both the harsh chemicals often associated with skin rejuvenation treatments, and the strenuous activity of many physical therapy programmes.
Salt is a mineral naturally found in seawater; it makes up three percent of our world’s oceans. Far from being an artificial substance, salt water is a natural part of the human body. In fact, approximately .5 percent of your body weight is a concentration that’s roughly equivalent to that of seawater.
In addition, salt water contains minerals essential to physical and mental health, including calcium, magnesium, and potassium. These can become depleted due to aspects of modern life such as stress, poor diet, and pollution. During immersion in seawater, however, trace amounts of these elements are absorbed through the skin, resulting in improved circulation.
Thalassotherapy is a gentle method of achieving vasodilation, or the widening of blood vessels to increase blood flow. As your blood moves more easily to your nerves, muscles, and organs, it carries oxygen to virtually every cell, balancing your metabolism, relaxing and revitalizing your entire body, and promoting good health and spiritual wellness.
In addition to being an effective cure for numerous ailments, thalassotherapy can help to prevent muscle aches after a strenuous workout, or skin problems after a sunburn or exposure to hot or dry weather conditions.
Regardless of whether you’re using it as a prevention or a cure, thalassotherapy will harness the healing powers of seawater to get you back on the path to optimum health and spiritual bliss.
The typical thalassotherapy programme includes a course of hydrotherapy sessions, gentle water aerobics, and massage. Each treatment will leave you feeling soothed and refreshed, with a new-found vitality.
Back pain is one of the most common medical complaints of the twenty-first century.
Researchers have found that 9 of 10 adults experience back pain at some point during their lives, and 5 of 10 working adults complain of back pain at least once each year.
Besides causing moderate to extreme physical discomfort, backache can have adverse effects on your mind and spirit. A specially designed thalassotherapy programme, however, can loosen constricted back muscles, healing both the body and the soul. The best treatment will combine hydrotherapy with a therapeutic marine mud wrap, to ease mental and spiritual stress, and to target the physical source of the discomfort.
The typical result is a remedying of back pain. As part of an effective thalassotherapy regime, you’ll also be taught about both pain management and how to avoid future backache.
Once healed by thalasso, you’ll be armed with prevention techniques to stop back pain before it starts and prevent it from recurring.
Thalassotherapy has been proven for hundreds of years as a way of relaxing aging muscles and stiff joints, of keeping limbs supple, of combating joint and muscle pain and tenderness, and of enhancing agility—regardless of your age.
In addition, the application of salt water is a time-honoured skincare treatment for closing pores, balancing oil production, and rejuvenating the skin. It is efficacious against many signs of aging, including sagging, dryness, redness, chapping, inflammation, soreness, etc.
As your body feels and looks better, your spirits will soar. Thalassotherapy’s effects of rejuvenation and wellness will enhance your mental stability and revive your spirit, giving you a positive, cheerful outlook and a natural sense of optimism and wellbeing.
Thalassotherapy has been proven effective in studies around the world.
Brazilian researchers found aerobic exercise in salt water not only relieves fibromyalgia, but it also brings emotional relief to patients.
A Dutch study found that fewer than three weeks of thalassotherapy delivers physical and quality-of-life benefits to fibromyalgia patients.
Scientists in the Germany found that bathing in a “Dead Sea” salt solution protects the skin, enhances skin hydration, and reduces inflammation in dry skin.
And in Italy, researchers are confirming thalassotherapy’s positive effects on both the musculoskeletal system (for osteoarthritis, in particular) and the skin.