Infrared Saunas: Heats the Skin and Not the Air
Infrared saunas are different from conventional saunas in that occupants are heated with the help of heaters that radiate infrared rays, rather than heated steam. In addition, the infrared sauna does not heat the air and consists of a wooden box that holds several infrared heaters though; it is also possible to have open air infrared saunas to heat the users.
Basically, the sauna box is able to produce an atmosphere very much like a sauna and it is the heaters that give off the actual heating effect. Infrared radiation can heat the skin directly without needing to heat the air and, in infrared saunas; the heater produces radiating energy that may be compared to the heat from the sun.
The technology was developed by Dr. Tadashi Ishikawa in 1965, who was a member of the Research and Development Department of Fuji Medical. Promoters of infrared saunas claim that this method is completely safe and, that heat produced in this manner can penetrate the skin to more than 1.5 inches into the body.
Just Like the Heat of the Sun
Infrared heat enjoys some distinct advantages over traditional steam heat saunas, though critics will insist that infrared saunas are unable to provide users with the same relaxation as well as invigoration that the steam equivalent provides. Whether or not you opt to go with the infrared technology is a matter of personal preference. Infrared heaters are able to warm the body much as natural sunlight does using wavelengths of both visible and invisible light spectrums. Also, the infrared sauna causes the body to perspire and obtain all the health benefits of regular saunas, while at the same time avoiding the harmful, exceedingly hot moist air that the traditional sauna produces.
While traditional saunas will spread as well as cultivate bacteria present in humid air conditions, the infrared sauna is much more sanitary and, heats up in a shorter time, since it heats the skin and not the air. Infrared heat will penetrate, reflect, refract as well as radiate and the human body is able to absorb infrared rays because of their deep penetration abilities.
In addition, when such infrared rays penetrate through the skin to subcutaneous tissues beneath, they transform light energy into heat energy and this thermal effect will make blood vessels as well as capillaries dilate thus improving blood circulation. It is in this way that the heat effectively rids the body of toxins as well as metabolic wastes, because of sweating.