Saunas are a great way to relax and an excellent complement to your overall healthcare routine. Is there a limit to how many times you should use the sauna?
You shouldn’t use an infrared sauna twice a day because of the risk of dehydration. Additionally, with the excessive heat and stress the sauna can cause your body, medical ailments – including undiagnosed ones – may be amplified. For best results, the ideal sauna session is 30-45 minutes with at least a day between sessions to allow for recovery.
Keep reading to learn why visiting an infrared sauna twice a day can do more harm than good.
Is it okay to use an infrared sauna twice a day?
Visiting the sauna can be an excellent way to start your morning or an ideal way to wind down after a long day at work, but what about doing both?
Using a sauna more than once a day is not recommended because overuse can cause dehydration, heart complications, and dangerous fluctuations in blood pressure. Limiting your sauna visits to once a day and allowing at least a day for recovery between visits will allow you to enjoy all the potential benefits of the sauna while minimizing the risks.
An infrared sauna can reach temperatures as high as 185°F, meaning your skin can reach 104°F within just minutes. You will begin to sweat profusely almost immediately, your pulse will jump, and your heart will work twice as hard as usual – although the blood will be directed toward your skin rather than to your internal organs.
That’s a lot to put your body through! Proper rest and recovery are necessary after an intense sauna session.
If you do choose to visit the sauna more than once a day, you should limit your overall time in the sauna just as you typically would a single session. Even if you’re a seasoned sauna user, it’s not advised to stay in for more than 45 minutes a day. In this case, consider breaking that into two 20 minute sessions.
Reasons you shouldn’t use infrared saunas twice a day
Too much of a good thing isn’t good, and, in the case of the infrared sauna, it may not be good for you.
You should limit your sauna sessions to once a day to reduce your risk of:
- Exacerbating existing medical conditions
Let’s look at each of these reasons to see how a second trip to the sauna can make you feel worse instead of better.
Dehydration is more than just feeling thirsty after your workout or sauna session – it is a potentially serious medical problem and should not be taken lightly.
Excessive sweating – such as that experienced in a sauna – is a leading cause of dehydration. Dehydration can lead to urinary and kidney problems, low blood volume, and even heatstroke.
Dehydration is already a concern when you’re visiting the sauna on a standard 30-45 minute per session 3-4 times a week schedule. Doubling the time in the sauna significantly increases the risk, especially as you’re not allowing your body the time to recover from the first session.
To combat the risk of dehydration, drinking water before and after your sauna session is a good practice. You should aim for the equivalent of 3-4 bottles of water to balance out the fluids lost. Ideally, you should also eat a snack to help replenish the lost electrolytes.
Those who have medical conditions such as coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, and poor immune systems, shouldn’t use saunas at all unless under the direction of their doctor.
The heat stress from saunas amplifies whatever condition you may have and can cause further ailments. Adding a second visit into the mix will only further increase the risks.
You may still be able to enjoy the sauna by assessing your health situation and seeking professional advice from a doctor.
Hot, humid rooms are a breeding ground for bacteria. A sauna’s health benefits are negated if it’s not properly maintained. Sharing an intimate space in a public area may lead to the transfer of some diseases.
Unsurprisingly, going to the sauna twice a day increases the likelihood of these problems, and it may be in your best interest to stay home, especially during cold and flu season.
While an infrared sauna uses dry heat and is not as likely to be a breeding ground for bacteria as other forms of saunas, there is still the question of sweat and general sanitation to contend with.
The ideal length of time for infrared sauna sessions
The condition of your overall health determines how long you can stay in the sauna.
Ideally, the best length of time for a sauna session is 30-45 minutes. Any more than that, you begin to run the risk of hurting your health. This is a sufficient amount of time because it allows the heart rate to increase, and you can still enjoy the benefits of each session.
However, if you’re in poor health or unaccustomed to the sauna’s heat, you may feel exhausted and light-headed after only a few minutes. It’s important to listen to your body and seek advice from a health practitioner if you are unsure about the time you should spend in the sauna.
Also, when you leave the sauna, you should take your time to return to your normal temperature. Jumping into cold water afterward, i.e., taking a cold bath, may have its benefits, but it is also known to shock the body with the sudden temperature change.
How many times a day can I use an infrared sauna?
Now that you know the reasons why you shouldn’t overuse saunas let’s go over how many times a day you can use an infrared sauna.
You should limit your daily sauna time to 30-45 minutes. While it is best to do this time all at once, some people choose to split it up. In that case, allow your body to recover before returning to the sauna, and don’t exceed your daily sauna time.
Some people will take breaks and use a sauna for only 10-15 minutes at a time. This is a good rule of thumb to follow and to keep your sessions short if you wish to use the sauna multiple times a day.
The extra time between sessions will give your body a chance to recuperate from the heat and open a window for you to socialize and rehydrate.
Can you do infrared sauna two days in a row?
Whether you are a first-time sauna user or a veteran, there are a few things to remember.
You should not use an infrared sauna two days in a row If your body has not adjusted to the heat exposure or if you haven’t properly rested after numerous sessions.
Just like going to the gym and getting sore, it’s best to have a rest day, so the body has time to recover.
For those who do not have much experience with saunas, the heat can be overwhelming, so it’s recommended to start with lower heat and a shorter duration. If you are healthy and go to the sauna regularly, you can gradually increase the temperature and time.
However, it’s best not to exceed 30-45 minute sessions a day, especially in high heat, because of the strain you put on your body. If you wish to use the sauna two days in a row, assess how you feel and keep it to 10-15 minutes per session.
The main takeaway is to be careful when it comes to using the sauna and to make sure you are in good health. Everyone wants to benefit from the sauna and enjoy a relaxing time, but the concerns arising from excessive use are worth noting and attention.
So always consult with your doctor if using a sauna is safe, especially if you have medical concerns.