Whether you prefer to jump in after you wake up to get your day started or you just can’t seem to sleep well without taking a shower to rid yourself of the days dirt and debris, we can probably all agree that hot showers are one of our guilty pleasures. Sure, they’re relaxing, therapeutic or energizing depending on what you want to get out of it, but turning that hot water dial too far can do more harm than good. See below to find out why you may want to think twice about taking long, hot showers:
Why Are Hot Showers Bad?
- They Cause Dry Skin: similar to the effects of heating your home, hot showers can severely dry out your skin. Hot water mixed with soap strips your skin of its natural oils and hydration mechanisms and can leave you feeling itchy and dry.
- They Can Worsen Skin Conditions: if you suffer from skin conditions like eczema or other types of rashes, hot water can cause them to spread or make your symptoms worse.
- They Can Increase Blood Pressure: believe it or not, hot water can cause an increase in blood pressure — especially in those who have problems with high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease.
Are There Any Benefits To Hot Showers?
- They Can Relieve Respiratory Symptoms: the steam associated with hot showers can help open up airways, loosen phlegm and clear out your nasal passages. You may have heard a doctor or nurse tell you to take a warm shower if you have a cold.
- They Can Relax Your Muscles: hot water tends to relieve body tension and can help with muscle fatigue after a strenuous workout.
- They Can Help Reduce Blemishes/Acne: hot water opens up pores which can aid in cleaning out dirt and oils that cause blemishes and pimples.
The conclusion? There are some pros as well as some cons to taking hot showers. If you have perfectly healthy, hydrated skin you can probably get away with taking warmer showers. But if you tend to suffer from the conditions mentioned above, you may want to leave that lever on the cooler side.
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