Arthritis and hot tub hydrotherapy:
Over the years, hot tub hydrotherapy has evolved from "simply relaxing" to "physically therapeutic" for several medical conditions, among them arthritis.
Arthritis, which is an inflammation of the joints, causes pain and swelling as well as decreased range of motion. Researchers believe that time spent in a hot tub can help ease the aches and pains of arthritis while allowing the joints a higher degree of mobility.
According to the Arthritis Foundation, gentle stretching exercises should be done every day to help strengthen muscles and bones and increase flexibility. Further, the Foundation states that flexibility exercises can help protect joints by reducing the risk of joint injury; daily exercises can be done in water such as a hot tub, and are particularly useful for easing stiff arthritic joints in the morning.
Additionally, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine states that in the small number of controlled studies done on hydrotherapy for rheumatoid arthritis, many have reported benefit.
The buoyant warm water hydrotherapy of a Home and Garden hot tub makes it the ideal environment for relieving arthritis symptoms while improving overall range of motion.
When arthritis strikes, simple activities of daily living, like buttoning a shirt or starting the car, become difficult due to stiff joints and decreased mobility. Even minor arthritis pain can interfere with your daily routine.
Home and Garden Spas' hydrotherapy can help relieve arthritis symptoms:
- The heat from the warm water relaxes the entire body as it increases blood flow.
- The massaging action of the jets loosens muscle tension and soothes sore joints
- water's buoyancy makes you feel lighter, with up to 90% of your body weight lifted.
The New England Journal of Medicine reported on a study (08-16-1999) regarding the benefits of physical exercise and therapy from the use of hot tub spas. As reported, patients with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus were studied using a hot tub 30 minutes a day, 6 days per week. After only 10 days, patients required reduced doses of insulin, lost weight, showed distinct decreases in plasma glucose and glycosylated hemoglobin, and benefited from improved sleep and an increased general sense of well-being.
The study also reported of benefits for patients who are unable to exercise. These patients would specifically benefit from increased blood flow to skeletal muscles. Once again, if you have this condition or other medical issues, you must consult with your physician prior to starting any hydrotherapy program.