Saturday, October 27, 2012

From pinned to practice: detox/de-stress bath

With everything that's been going on lately, I haven't had much energy or desire to try a lot of new things from Pinterest, so my "Pinned to Practice" posts have sort of fallen by the wayside.  However, last night I tried out something that I had recently pinned, and it was really great - it was a "recipe" for a detox/de-stress bath.

You add Epsom salts, baking soda and lavender essential oil to your bath water and soak for 20 minutes and it's supposed to reduce stress, draw out toxins and balance your pH levels.  The pin, unfortunately, doesn't lead to an actual site, so I googled the description (someone thoughtfully provided all the info in the description, so you don't really need the website) and found it was taken from this site with other "detoxing" tips.  The author recommends doing this "detox" soak once a week.

I tried it out last night, and I found it really helped me (at least the de-stress part - not sure exactly how to measure the detox aspect!).  I'm not much of a bath person, so I'll admit, I was a little antsy to just sit in the tub for 20 minutes (and my tub is nothing like that in the picture - our tub is in the kids' bathroom, so it's decidedly less tranquil-looking and quite a bit smaller).  However, it was kind of nice to just take that time and relax.  I was also pleasantly surprised that I enjoyed, or at least wasn't bothered by, the scent of the lavender.  I'm not a "scent" person.  Most scents give me a headache, but this one was okay.  And when I went to bed later that night, I fell asleep almost instantly (granted, I am still taking a little bit of melatonin, down to 1/4 of a pill or about 1 mg, but I don't think that's what did it).  I woke up quite a few times at night (not unusual for me), but overall, it was a good sleep, which is awesome.  I think I will try to make this a weekly habit, as they recommend.

I did a little "research" (aka googling) about the different ingredients and their benefits, and here's what I came up with (please note: this is not medical advice):

Epsom salt -
Epsom salt, named for a bitter saline spring at Epsom in Surrey, England, is not actually salt but a naturally occurring pure mineral compound of magnesium and sulfate.  Epsom salt has beneficial properties that can soothe the body, mind and soul...Some of the countless health benefits include relaxing the nervous system, curing skin problems, soothing back pain and aching limbs, easing muscle strain, healing cuts, treating cold and congestion, and drawing toxins from the body. 
Stress drains the body of magnesium and increases levels of adrenaline. When dissolved in warm water, Epsom salt is absorbed through the skin and replenishes the level of magnesium in the body. The magnesium helps to produce serotonin, a mood-elevating chemical within the brain that creates a feeling of calm and relaxation...Magnesium ions also relax and reduce irritability by lowering the effects of adrenaline. They lower blood pressure, create a relaxed feeling, improve sleep and concentration, and help muscles and nerves to function properly.
Baking soda - (from this website) -
Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, provides a naturally alkaline substance with a reputation for helping to remove toxins...In addition to its reputation for drawing out toxins, adding baking soda to your bathwater leaves your skin feeling soft and smooth.
Lavender essential oil - (from this website) -
Lavender essential oil has a calming scent which makes it an excellent tonic for the nerves. Therefore, it helps in treating migraines, headaches, anxiety, depression, nervous tension and emotional stress. The refreshing aroma removes nervous exhaustion and restlessness and increases mental activity.  Lavender essential oil induces sleep and hence it is often recommended for insomnia.

Sounds good to me!


LaughingLady said...

Glad to hear it seems to work even without the amazing tub and magnificent view!! ;)

Sistergirl said...

Sounds like a wonderful relaxing journey.