Modern people choose to go to saunas and steam rooms to relax, relieve stress and tension, or even to help alleviate muscle and back pain. If you’re not initiated into this world yet, you will be faced with making a choice between the two, a choice that proves to be very difficult if you’re not well informed on what they have to offer. To make things easier for you, we have taken our time to do the proper research and explain in detail what each of them has to offer, what health benefits accompany using them, and how they are differentiated. Therefore, if you want to learn more, continue to read this article.

Particularities of Saunas

They have gained a bigger following in the last years due to the fact that they offer a great dry heat, the environment being friendlier when compared to the environment in a steam room. The dry heat that the traditional models provide comes from a heater that heats up a stack of rocks. As this happens, they start to radiate the heat into the room. Usually, you can pour water over these rocks if you want to boost the humidity a bit. But what has made them gain such a staggering success is the fact that the dry heat can be provided with the help of infrared light as well. The modern units that feature this operation are known as infrared saunas, and they are generally preferred due to the fact that they are very efficient and healthy. They work by heating the bodies that they encounter, not the air, the fact that they’re focusing on directly heating up your body making infrared models a lot more effective and bringing better results when it comes to weight loss and the improvement of your overall health.

Particularities of Steam Rooms

They are characterized by the high humidity that is in them, the steam being perfect for those who can handle such an environment and who want a good sweating session fast. In them, a steam generator resides that boils the water, transforming it into steam and releasing it into the air. The construction of these units ensures that they are airtight, so there won’t be a chance for the steam to get out, this being the reason why the humidity in them builds up to 100 percent. While it’s true that they are ideal to use for numerous reasons, being great for detoxification, weight loss, and improving blood circulation, they shouldn’t be used by those who can’t stand high humidity.

Maintenance Work that both Types Require

If you intend to build or purchase any of the two options, know that a certain level of maintenance work accompanies them both. Steam units must be washed at least once per week with a ceramic tile cleaner, and it’s recommended to sit on a towel when you use them to not get into contact with various bacteria. When it comes to maintenance work, saunas should be vacuumed once per week. Also, the natural wood that goes into their construction should be washed with an acidic solution once in a while to get out any stains that appear.

Health Benefits that Come With Using them

You are probably already aware of the fact that using them regularly comes with a multitude of health benefits, but you most likely don’t know exactly how they help. To learn what health benefits actually accompany using them, check out the following lines.
  • Stress Relief

The hot environment in these units causes your body to release endorphins, which are the “feel good” chemicals that reside in your body and that reduce the feeling of stress. This is the reason why after a 20-30 minute session in them you will experience a total change in mood, feeling happy and rejuvenated.
  • Weight Loss

Another health benefit that accompanies using them is a boost in weight loss. Due to the fact that they both cause you to sweat excessively, there is a certain amount of calories that gets burned during each session. But don’t rely entirely on them to lose weight because the results won’t be impressive. What’s best for you to do is to accompany using them with exercising in order to see great results.
  • Detoxification

There is a high and dangerous amount of toxins that resides in our bodies, toxins that gather due to the contaminated air, food, and water that we enter into contact with. Fortunately, a 20-30 minute session in the hot environment of these units provides a great detoxification, helping you sweat out the toxins.
  • Relief of Muscle Tension

After you work out, or when you’re at work in case you are solicited to do physical activities, you might be confronted with tense and stiff muscles that make you feel uncomfortable. The hot environment that you’ll be in helps relieve the muscle tension effectively due to the fact that your muscles will be relaxed.
  • Improved Blood Flow

When you are exposed to the heat created in these environments, the capillaries will dilate and the blood will flow more freely and easily throughout your entire body. The fact that they promote a better blood flow comes with a whole series of health benefits because oxygen will be transported to your organs faster.
  • Skin Cleansing

Of course, sitting in their hot environment and sweating is going to help when it comes to the cleansing of your skin as well. As a matter of fact, sitting through 20-30 minute sessions in this heat can actually serve as a great acne treatment, this being the reason why teenagers should tend them too.

What are the Differences Between Saunas and Steam Rooms

Now that you know what they both stand for and what health benefits accompany them, it’s time to take a closer look at what major differences are between them. Everything that you need to know is in the comparison chart below, so take a close look at it in order to better understand how they are differentiated in order to decide what type suits you best.
Steam Room
Operating Temperature
Generally between 158 degrees Fahrenheit and 212 degrees Fahrenheit
Generally between 115 degrees Fahrenheit and 120 degrees Fahrenheit
Humidity levels
Humidity levels depend solely on the amount of water that you pour on the rocks
Generally close to 100 percent
Recommended Use
It’s recommended to be used by those who prefer dry heat sessions
It’s recommended to be used by those who can endure humid and hot environments
How the Heat is Generated
Heat generator inside the unit
Steam generator boils water into steam
Risks Associated with Use
Dehydration and excessive thirst if it isn’t used properly
Excessive thirst, vertigo, and dizziness if not used properly

Which One to Choose?

In the end, the choice depends solely on your preferences and your endurance to either high temperatures or hot steam. If you prefer the classic detoxification and relaxation method, you will prefer using the latter. If you want to enjoy the benefits of infrared light, a sauna will be more appropriate for you. Keep in mind that a steam room requires you to provide the necessary conditions for installing it whereas the sauna can be conveniently placed in your house with minimal modifications and adaptions. All in all, you must analyze the two types in detail and see which one will be more convenient and practical for you.