Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Splish Splash (You need to be taking a bath)

Before I tell you all I think I know, I do need to disclose just a few pieces of information. I am not a medical professional though I did take Anatomy and Physiology I in college. I DID, however, go to Beauty School which MIGHT give me a little bit of advantage in the beauty and skin care department.  I CAN boast of a tried and true history of successful and satisfying bathing. 

I received this picture a few weeks ago.

It is a picture of my parent’s almost completed master bath.

They have been remodeled their nearly 100-year-old farm house for nearly 100 years.

Pretty much.

This large master bath wasn’t at the top of the remodeling priority list.

I take that back. My Dad did install the toilet fairly early in the project.

He also purchased a large whirlpool tub.

And then promptly set it on top of the large box he had created for it.

That whirlpool tub has stored air mattresses, extra blankets, Christmas presents, the occasional jigsaw and stacks of National Geographic magazines.

Occasionally, one of us would hint (very loudly) about our fondness for a good tub soak. Or the need to feel the whirlpool jets across our weary bones.

Dad (who apparently doesn’t care for my weary bones) would simply nod his head.

Until now.

Now that I live over 8 hours away.

My mom told me that when it first was installed everybody had to have a turn in the whirlpool tub.

It was like Christmas came a little early (or late) to the farm on Raccoon Road.

The tub installation is significant primarily because of what Momma instilled into us at an early age.

If you are cold, put on more socks.

If you are hungry, go make yourself something to eat.

If you want to rest easy at night, be kind to those around you…no matter how much they hurt you.

If you are bored, better go find something to do because there is always a chore to be done.

If you are:
Or weary…
Go take a hot bath and fix yourself a cup of hot tea.

And if you are really sick, Momma will run the bath and fix you a cup of tea herself.

This “cure for all that ails ya” has stuck with me all my life.

When I was younger I didn’t fully appreciate the restorative benefits that a hot bath and a cup of tea would provide.

Our modern generation prefers the shower. Some houses or apartments are only built with showers. I’m not knocking the practicing of showering or bathing in general.

Personal hygiene is definitely encouraged in our home. Teenage boys can get ripe!

However, there are therapeutic benefits to a tub soak that can’t be disputed. A good soak in the tub might just be one of the cheapest natural medical treatments out there!
1.    Hot baths can be beneficial with those with arthritis. A bath helps promote the flow of endorphins.
2.    It can improve the heart’s circulation.
3.    It can increase endorphin levels. For those of us who suffer with seasonal depression and anxiety this is so beneficial!
4.    It can help improve your immune system. A hot bath increases circulation of the lymph system and accelerates the body’s natural healing process.
5.    When you are having trouble sleeping, a hot bath help with insomnia.
6.    It helps keep skin smooth and supple.
7.    If you are like me and suffer with arthritis, a hot bath can provide relief and soothe muscle and joint pain.

Now that I’ve given you just a few good reasons to languish in the tub, I want to impart a bit of “bath-taking” wisdom upon you.

Such as it is.

I make sure that I soak at least 10-20 minutes….even if I have to heat my water up a time or two. This allows for all the pores to open up and any benefit I might need to take effect.

Epsom salts and other bath “add-ins” have become my secret weapons. I can’t even begin to tell you how much including these minerals or essential oils has changed my life.

Dr. Axe has several great articles on “make it yourself” bath cocktail. Just go to his website and type “bath” in the search box. There is everything from Epsom salts to oatmeal. For years, I also added baking soda to my bath.

My current favorite bath “add-ins” are the Dr. Teal’s Epsom Salts. There are lots of varieties and I think I’ve tried about all of them.

Presently, I am loving this Energizing blend featuring Ginger and Clay.

It makes me happy.

Another favorite is the Peppermint Foot Soak. I don’t just use it for soaking feet. I like to add a lavender essential oil when I use this one, as well.

There are other household ingredients that you can add to a bath for healthy benefits, as well.

I just read that adding a couple of cups of vinegar to a warm bath can help a yeast infection. My mom used baking soda in our baths back in the day from time to time.  I, myself, always had some sort of rash going on…be it from a food allergy or dry skin. Adding baking soda to a bath helps soothe dry skin, eczema and hives.

From time to time I bring my music into the bathroom, but mostly I relish the quiet. Sometimes I grab a paperback book (I’m awfully careful with my Kindle) or I just sit and let my mind drift and wander.

The after bath routine is also an important one. Because frequent bathing can dry out one’s skin, I make sure I moisturize right after patting myself down with a clean towel. A natural oil like coconut oil is safe and effective.

 I want to try and post (from time to time) more of my favorite self-care ideas. We need to be taking better care of ourselves!

So tell me. Do you enjoy a good hot bath? 

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