PHYSIOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF WATER AS A THERMOTERAPIC METHOD
Below we describe the physiological effects produced by water, having as a quality an elevated temperature, as is the case of the waters of the Balneario de Zújar. To achieve the thermo-therapeutic effects of water we need a temperature ranging from 36.5 to 40.5ºC.
-Analgesia: Heat raises the sensitivity threshold of nociceptors (pain receptors), decreases nerve conduction velocity and reduces muscle contraction. It acts as contrairritante, to modify the painful sensation.
The analgesic effect is also given by the release of endorphins that occurs after the hyperthermal bath. If the hot water bath is added to the agitation of the water in bubble mode the analgesic effect is greater. – Tissue Vasodilatation: If the application is sufficiently wide, the body temperature rises between 0.5 and 3ºC resulting in an increase of all organic functions due to overheating.
A temperature rise decreases the tone of the vascular musculature with the consequence of an increase in blood flow. Hyperemia, which is the increase of blood in an organ or tissue, as a result of the aforementioned tissue vasodilation, produces: analgesic and anti-inflammatory effect, increases cellular metabolism, increases reabsorption and elimination of metabolites, accelerates tissue repair processes .
-Seat: When the temperature of the water is close to our body temperature but slightly elevated and applied over a long period of time there is a body relaxation and a generalized sense of well-being. While applying very hot water in a short space of time produces the opposite effect, stirring.
– Antispasmodic and muscle relaxant effect: Long applications between 36 and 38 ° C exert a relaxing effect on muscle tone, combat contracture and muscle fatigue. This antispasmodic effect also acts reflexively on the smooth musculature of organs and internal viscera, so it is beneficial in cases such as abdominal cramps.
-Effect on the connective tissue: The heat causes an increase in the elasticity of the connective tissue. Very useful to decrease the articular and periarticular stiffness produced in rheumatic processes. Other benefits of water temperature can be found when performing physical exercise in water: -Relaxation. – Decreased pain and muscle spasm. -Increased circulation. – Maintenance or increase of joint mobility. – Muscular reeducation.
-Decreased joint and muscle load.
ALL THESE BENEFICIAL EFFECTS FOR OUR HEALTH, BETWEEN OTHERS, WE CAN FIND THEM IN ZUJAR’S SPA WATERS SINCE THE TEMPERATURE OF THEIR DIFFERENT INSTALLATIONS ROCK FROM 34ºC TO 41ºC.
Coral Domene. Nurse Spa of Zújar