For centuries, the use of hot springs and mineral waters for natural healing, also called balneotherapy, has been recommended for treating arthritis, skin conditions, fibromyalgia and simple aches and pains.

The word spa originated in the town of Spa in Belgium, whose medicinal spring waters became popular during the Middle Ages. Later, the term was applied to spring waters anywhere, and more recently, to any city or site with baths or hot tubs. Today, destination spas offer a range of water therapies. The idea that water can be therapeutic, also known as balneotherapy, is embraced by many natural health practitioners.

Water Therapy Benefits

Mitigates Muscle Aches:
Water therapy relieves muscle pain from playing sports or doing routine work and is an easy way to alleviate neck and back aches.

Eases Joint Pain:
Your buoyancy in water lessens pressure on your joints, and the warmth of a hot tub or other balneotherapy treatment can ease your range of motion. There is some scientific evidence that spa treatments like mud baths and hot tub soaks helps with arthritis pain.

Lessens Stress:
Many ailments can be linked with stress, so the relaxation spa therapy provides can be an effective way to de-stress and take care of your body and mind.

Helps You Sleep:
Warm water helps you relax, which in turn can help you sleep better. Since lack of sleep, often caused by stress, can cause irritability, depression, anxiety, and inability to function as well as you normally might, it’s worth considering sitting in a hot tub, going to a spa, or even just taking a warm bath before bedtime.

Benefits Your Skin:
Spa therapy often includes the use of a steam room. Steam eases aches and soothes the skin. A steam facial opens your pores and rejuvenates your skin.

Helps You Breathe Easier:
Humid air soothes sinuses and can ease allergy, cold and flu symptoms, so steam treatments and hot tubs can be beneficial if you’re under the weather, but if you’re really ill, it’s probably best to stick to at-home treatments.

Research indicates that balneotherapy can also have beneficial impacts on fibromyalgia and varicose veins, so if you suffer from these conditions, it’s probably worth a conversation with your health care provider.