Have you ever had a cough that just wouldn’t go away? I had this problem earlier this year. It started as a six-day flu, then became an persistent cough, which became bronchitis followed by early stage pneumonia. Two months and a round of antibiotics later, and I still couldn’t kick my lingering cough.
I did some research on alternative methods that could help my respiratory health bounce back, and I discovered salt therapy. This treatment is also known as halotherapy, derived from the Greek word halo, which translates to salt. I looked up a salt therapy spa in a town I was traveling to for work, and no kidding, my cough went away overnight after a 45 minute session. Wow!
There’s not a ton of research currently in the U.S. that supports the medical benefits of salt therapy. However, there’s a lot more research that has been done in Europe, and I’ve listed some links of studies at the bottom of this post. Even though salt therapy has been around for centuries, it started gaining popularity in the 1800s when Polish physician Feliks Boczkowski noticed that workers at a salt mine, unlike other miners, did not have respiratory or lung problems. Boczkowski’s research was a turning point for salt therapy being used for health purposes.
Salt has long been known for having antibacterial and antiviral properties. Inhaling salt particles can help remove pathogens (such as pollen and pollutants) and has anti-inflammatory and mucolytic effects. Salt therapy can benefit skin conditions and relieve stress as well.
Here are some conditions that are claimed to be improved with salt therapy:
- allergies and hay fever
- mycoplasma pneumoniae (type of bacteria lacking a cell wall and is resistant to antibiotics – check out this article for more info)
- cystic fibrosis
- sleep apnea
- ear infections
If you suffer from any of the ailments above, you may want to consider trying salt therapy. In my particular scenario, salt therapy eliminated my cough when antibiotics, over the counter medicine, rest, and healthy eating had little to no effect.
Salt therapy is a growing spa trend, and salt rooms can be found in most major cities in the U.S. Be sure to visit our directory regularly, as we are constantly updating and will hopefully have a location listed near you soon.
Visit the links below if you’d like to do a little more research: