Salt caves to battle respiratory problems

Good health

Considering the rising incidences of respiratory problems in Delhi/NCR due to pollution and winter smog, one Delhi hospital claims that its Salt Room Therapy (SRT) may help people with respiratory as well as some skin conditions.

“High pollution level has taken a toll on the respiratory health of people. Not just older people and the children, but youth and apparently healthy people are also falling prey to rising pollution in the NCR region. With the onset of winter, when respiratory problem aggravates due to smog, treatments like SRT, which is natural form of treatment, can provide symptomatic relief to the patients suffering from respiratory problems,” claims Dr Animesh Ray, consultant pulmonologist,Fortis Vasant Kunj.

Salt therapy goes back to the 18th Century, when in 1843, a Polish health official observed that the miners at the Wieliczka salt mine in Poland suffered from the same kinds of respiratory illnesses that were common in the general population. Soon the halotherapy salt rooms started gaining popularity in Eastern Europe. According to them, there are ‘salt claves’ where one feels like he is on a beach and is breathing salty air. The hospital claims that doing this has some health benefits.

SRT is for people suffering from asthma and other respiratory illnesses.
Dr Ray explains that, in medical terms, salt therapy or halotherapy is the inhalation of extremely small (micronised) dry salt particles within a chamber that mimics a salt cave environment. To the uninitiated, the link between salt rooms and asthma may sound far-fetched.

Explaining the basic science behind the concept Dr Varsha, consulting doctor at SRT India, says,“Salt therapy is simple. Salt helps in reducing inflammation that causes spasm of the bronchus.”

“The salty air absorbs oedema (excess of watery fluid collecting in the cavities or tissues of the body) from the mucosal lining of the airways, caused due to inflammation.”

“This helps normalise the passage of air through the bronchial tubes, leading to widening of the airway passages, restoring the normal transport of mucus and unclogging blockages in the bronchi thereby helping control the asthmatic attacks,” she says .

According to them salt therapy does not only offer momentary benefits, the effects of therapy last for several months.

They also claim that full sessions gives asthma sufferers relief for extended periods of time, that too without any side effects.

“Salt room therapy is a drug-free treatment for asthma, chronic bronchitis, sinusitis, allergic rhinitis, smoker’s and allergic cough and skin ailments like eczema and
psoriasis,” claims Anju Chandna, founder of SRT India.

“The overwhelming response to the therapy that we have got at our flagship centre in Noida has prompted us to launch more such centres across Delhi.”

It will offer them an effective drug free treatment option to fight the rising pollution all around us,” she claims.

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