What is the effect of sand baths? To whom is heated sand indicated and contraindicated?
How nice it is on the beach to lie down directly on the hot sea sand! Children, playing, even bury each other on the shoulders or waist-deep, few people know that there is a simple and ancient way of treating heated sand. It is called “psammotherapy” – from the Greek layer psammo – sand and therapia – treatment. Herodotus, Galen, Avicenna wrote about psammotherapy. And in Russia, heated sand began to be used at the end of the 19th century for the treatment of kidney and joint diseases.
For medicinal purposes, sea, lake, river sand is used, which includes quartz, feldspar, mica and other rocks. Depending on the size of the grains of sand, the sand can be coarse-grained (more than 0.5 millimeters each), medium-grained (from 0.5 to 0.25 millimeters) and fine-grained (from 0.25 to 0.1 millimeters).
For treatment, medium-grained is most suitable. Its therapeutic effect is due to both temperature and mechanical effects. Sand perfectly retains heat, conducts it poorly and slowly gives off to the surface of the human body, causing a favorable response from the nervous, vascular and other body systems. Covering the body, sand gently massages the skin and underlying tissues. As a result, blood and lymph circulation are activated, sweating intensifies, which leads to loss of excess body weight. oxidative processes are stimulated, kidney function is facilitated. Sand baths have a soothing effect that is more pronounced. Being dry and porous, sand well absorbs profuse sweat, so the body does not overheat and the heat of sand is easily tolerated.
Psammotherapy is especially indicated for diseases of the musculoskeletal system (spine, joints, muscles, tendons), metabolic and traumatic nature, with stiff mobility of joints of non-tuberculosis origin, diseases of the peripheral nervous system (neuralgia, neuritis, polyneuritis, radiculitis), residual poliomyelitis , with inflammatory diseases of the female genital organs. Sand baths are taken during the period of remission, but in no case when the disease worsens!
In summer, on a sunny day, sand baths are taken right on the beach – the sand here heats well (up to 60 °) and is clean enough, as the sun kills microbes. Build a human-sized medallion out of sand, and lay there face up, with your head in the shadow formed by an umbrella or awning. The skin should be dry, so be sure to wipe the sweat. Place a folded towel under your head and a napkin dipped in cool water on your forehead, which is advisable to change as it heats up. And now ask that you be covered with a layer of hot sand with a thickness of 5 – 6 centimeters, and on the stomach this layer should not exceed 1 – 2 centimeters. Leave the heart area open.
The temperature of the common sand bath can be from 45 to 55 °. If the sand is wet and not sufficiently heated (even on a sunny day), psammotherapy should not be performed.
The duration of the procedure for adults is 25-30 minutes, for children – 10-15 minutes. Then it’s good to take a shower and relax in the shade for half an hour. Local baths are also taken on the beach. digging in the sand a sore arm, leg, or just a joint. The duration of the bath is up to 1 – 1.5 hours.
Sand baths of artificial heating are prepared as follows. The cleaned sand is heated in barrels, on roasters, baking sheets to 110 – 120 °, mixed with cold sand to a temperature of 55 – 60 °. It is poured into a wooden box, where, for example, a sick hand is lowered and covered with a layer of heated sand with a thickness of 5 – 6 centimeters, and covered with a blanket on top to reduce heat loss. If you have doubts about the cleanliness of the sand, sift it through a thick sieve, rinse in any container and then calcine at 120 ° C for 1.5 hours in the oven – in a roasting pan or on a baking sheet, stirring evenly.
Shared sand baths are taken every other day or two in a row, and on the third take a break. On the course – 12 – 15, less often 18 – 20 procedures, local sand baths can be taken every day for a month.
Treatment with heated sand is contraindicated for suffering decompensated heart diseases, severe atherosclerosis, infectious diseases, epilepsy and many other diseases. Therefore, before starting psammotherapy, it is necessary to consult a doctor.