Showering is an essential part of our daily routine, and one that – for the most part – we tend to enjoy. Whether you use your shower to kickstart your morning and get yourself feeling ready for the day ahead, or to unwind and soothe yourself come the evening, a good soak brings feelings of refreshment and relaxation. But did you know that your daily shower can do more for your wellbeing than simply making you feel better? Multiple studies now show that your morning or evening wash could have bona-fide health benefits. Hot and cold showers are thought to affect us slightly differently and each come with their own positives, so let’s investigate.
Health benefits of hot showers
- They can reduce cold symptoms. A bunged up, blocked nose might just be the worst part of being run down. Fortunately, a toasty warm shower could come to your rescue, as the steam vapours help moisturise and decongest your nasal passages when inhaled. The vapour will also help loosen any mucus that could be causing you to cough.
- They’re good for your muscles. Long, tough workout? There’s little better for your recovery than a hot shower, which will relieve tension in stiff muscles. The higher the water pressure the better, as it’ll have a massaging affect, so opt for digital or power showers where you can.
- They could relieve stress. There may just be some science behind that clear-head feeling your steamy soak gives you. One study found that a hot shower can spike your oxytocin levels, which helps to wind down the fight-flight response that’s behind daily stress.
- They can relieve aches and pains. The warmth of a hot shower stimulates circulation, loosening joints and tissues. While it may not be long lasting, this effect could provide temporary relief for conditions like arthritis and muscle injuries.
- They help cleanse your pores. Blocked pores are the leading cause of unsightly spots, particularly on the face. When we have a hot shower, these are opened up, giving you chance to wipe away any blockages when you cleanse. To really see the benefit, use a flannel soaked in cold water after your shower to reclose the pores.
Health benefits of cold showers
- They could reduce physical fatigue. If you’ve ever tried it, you’ll probably already vouch for this one! Either way, research has now backed up this long-believed benefit; with one study showing a sudden, three-minute cold wash was effective at reducing fatigue and increasing alertness.
- They can improve hair and skin. While they may feel lovely, hot showers are not particularly natural and so can have the effect of drying our hair and skin out, by washing away many essential oils. An occasional cold shower could help reverse this, putting you well on your way to glowing locks and a radiant smile.
- They may boost your immune system. Research by Professor Vijay Kakkar (founder of the Thrombosis Research Institute) found that a cold shower can stimulate the production of cells used to fight infections. This is thought to be because the cold causes the lymph nodes to contract, giving them a ‘shock’, and kickstarting the cell production.
- They speed up muscle recovery. You’ve probably seen your favourite sports stars diving into an ice bath after a game or match. That’s because there’s lots of evidence that cooling the muscles immediately after intensive exercise is beneficial, reducing lactic acid that’s built up and improving circulation where it’s needed. Some studies recommend switching between hot and cold to see even better results from this, which will be easy to do if you have a mixer shower.
Looking for that perfect shower for your skin type? Our Mira Switch Four Spray Shower Head features four spray modes, including a softer pressure for sensitive skin.
Whether or not you’re willing to brave a cold shower to make the most of these wellbeing-boosting benefits, your shower time should be something to look forward to. At Mira Showers, our range of showers will ensure you do just that, with a selection of electric showers to choose from. If you love bringing all the latest innovations into your home, why not take a look at our digital showers?