Therapeutic Benefits of Hot Tubs

For thousands of years, people have used hot springs for relaxation and pain relief. In the 1940s, Candido Jacuzzi developed a submersible pump to provide hydrotherapy treatments for his son, who had rheumatoid arthritis. This development grew from a therapeutic treatment to the luxury item known as the hot tub. While it is rare for a doctor to prescribe a hot tub as a treatment, hot tubs do offer therapeutic benefits.

A young couple sitting in a hot tub together. Credit: altrendo images/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Relief of Muscle Pain and Tightness

The warmth of the water has the same impact as a hot pack on a sore muscle. Rather than radiant heat, the warm water engulfs the entire body and loosens any muscle tightness. Pressurized water from jets on the wall, seats and floor acts as a pinpoint massager, applying direct pressure to a tense or painful muscle. Performing mild exercise or stretching in a hot tub improves flexibility as limbs and muscles can move freely, without the pressure of body weight.

Stop Arthritis Pain

Water also makes the body buoyant, allowing free movement of joints without weight or pressure. The body weighs approximately 90 percent less when submerged in water, suggests Human Kinetics. By removing stress from the joints, the body can move freely, without the pain related to arthritis.

Increased Blood Flow

The American Heart Association reports that hot tubs cause the dilation of blood vessels, increasing the flow and pressure of blood throughout the body. This helps people with muscle or joint pain by delivering oxygen and enzymes to the site of an ache.

Restful Sleep

In its Healthy Sleep Tips, the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) says that "soaking in hot water before retiring to bed can ease the transition into deeper sleep." The NSF cautions, however, that you should not go to bed overly hot and recommends 60 to 90 minutes between getting out of a hot tub and going to bed.

references & resources
Load Comments

Copyright © 2019 Leaf Group Ltd. Use of this web site constitutes acceptance of the LIVESTRONG.COM Terms of Use , Privacy Policy and Copyright Policy . The material appearing on LIVESTRONG.COM is for educational use only. It should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. LIVESTRONG is a registered trademark of the LIVESTRONG Foundation. The LIVESTRONG Foundation and LIVESTRONG.COM do not endorse any of the products or services that are advertised on the web site. Moreover, we do not select every advertiser or advertisement that appears on the web site-many of the advertisements are served by third party advertising companies.