HYDROTHERAPY: How to Treat Diseases with water
Nature has remedies in abundance for our health and healing. Water, fresh air, sunlight, in fact, the NEW STAR for a comprehensive list, and the healing herbs are remedies from Heaven. Now you will be introduced to water treatment. Water treatment is one of God’s natural remedial gift to man, and it is very effective.
The word hydrotherapy can be divided into two parts: hydro-water + therapy -treatment, The Dictionary explains it as the “External use of water in the medical treatment of certain diseases.”’ Hydrotherapy utilizes water in any of its three forms—solid, liquid, or vapor—in the treatment of disease or injury.
Water is a very valuable therapeutic agent because of these remarkable properties
THE THERAPEUTIC AGENTS AND PROPERTIES OF WATER
- water is nearly always available, abundant, and cheap
- It has great power for absorbing and releasing heat
- Solvent properties, water being the one universal solvent
- It is easy to apply, as no allergies are associated with its handling
- Non—irritating (even internally)
- Proper density for buoyancy
- Water gives up heat rapidly, yet it does not cool too rapidly
- Proper viscosity (fluidity)
- Exists in three states at useful temperatures
Water Treatment and its effects on the body:
The body is very sensitive to changes in temperature (environmental and body temperature). Hydrotherapy may be used to:
- Move blood from one area of the body to another (eg. Hot Foot Bath)
- Relieve congestion
- Increase circulation (generally and to specific areas) Raise the body temperature
- Promote relaxation and rest
- Help release heat from the body in case of fever
- help remove toxins from the body (through sweating)
- Stimulate the immune system (white blood cells multiply and become more active)
- Reduce pain
- Enhance the supply of oxygen and nutrients to the tissues to promote rapid healing of cells and tissues
- There are many more beneficial results from hydrotherapy which will be elucidated at the various specific therapies
PHYSIOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF HOT AND COLD WATER IN TREATMENTS
The use of Hot water:
- Increases blood flow
- Increases the inflammatory response
- Increases hemorrhage
- Decreases muscle pain and spasm
- Decreases stiffness in arthritis
The use of cold water:
- Decreases blood flow
- Decreases the inflammatory response
- Decreases hemorrhage
- Decreases muscle pain and spasm
- Increases stiffness in arthritis
Big Plastic Bowels
Small Plastic Bowels
Who should know how’ to give water treatments?
There are many ways in which water can be applied to relieve pain and check the disease. Everyone should become intelligent in its use in administering simple home treatments.
Water is not only an absolute necessity but so vital to the good of man. All of us know that water is good for drinking and washing.
To drink a lot of water is very good for our health. Water helps to clean the blood and can prevent many diseases like high blood pressure and painful kidney stones. More about the use of water for our health is treated in WATER under the NEW START.
Water treatments help the entire body to heal infections, injuries, and many other diseases. Water treatments are also safe and easy to use.
Types of water Treatments include:
Contrast bath or Hot and Cold treatment. Is a local bath which covers the feet and ankles. This is one of the best water treatments (hot and cold bath). This treatment may be used for one part of the body, like an arm or a leg, or the whole body, which is put into hot and then, cold water.
The contrast shower; this is another highly effective treatment—. This treatment acts as a healthy stimulant and energizer, promoting good circulation and all-around physical health. It involves bathing the whole body, unlike contrast bath or Hot and Cold bath that require the submersion of only a part or parts of the body in water.
Even patients who have been plagued with recurring colds for months have found this remedy effective. By taking a daily hot shower and ending with a quick cold shower, many were able to remain free from common cold.
Why use water in the two different states- hot and cold? Here is what happens to the body when hot and cold water is applied to the skin.
Hot water pulls the blood to the skin, as the pipes carrying blood (blood vessels) get larger with heat.
Then cold water takes the blood away, as the blood pipes get narrower from the cold. When we do this treatment a few times it makes more blood go to that part of the body.
The hot and cold bath can help treat many problems, including: Infections, on the hands and feet, swelling of the feet and ankles etc.
The contrast bath has helped many people regain their health without having to use harmful or expensive medications. This treatment can be given, as needed, several times a day.
The use of water in its different state is to induce or influence the body mechanism to increase activity or concentrate resources on a given location of the body to effect healing
- Heating Compress
- Cold Mitten Friction
- Ice Massage
- Steam Inhalation
- Hot Tub Bath (Hot Half Bath)
- Russian Steam Bath etc
“In health and in sickness, pure water is one of heavens choicest blessings. Its proper use promotes health; it is the beverage which God provided to quench the thirst of animals and man. When water is drunk freely, it helps to supply the necessities of the system and assists nature to resist disease. The external application of water is one of the easiest and most satisfactory ways of regulating the circulation of the blood. A cold or cool bath is an excellent tonic. Warm bath opens the pores and thus aid in the elimination of impurities. Both warm and neutral baths soothe the nerves and equalize the circulation.
Does daily use of water promote good health?
Bathing helps the bowels, the stomach, and the liver, giving health and energy to each, and it promotes digestion.”
God blesses the efforts in the USE of the simple methods of treatment which He has provided
“When in faith” as written by Ellen White “the human agent does all he can to combat disease, using the simple methods of treatment that God has provided, his efforts will be blessed by God.”
History Of Hydrotherapy
Hydrotherapy has a very old and rich history; it’s not a new phenomenon. However, much findings and modern touch have been given to it for better efficiency. We will note what is needful and encouraging and note to provide an extensive history on this age-long way of disease prevention and treatment. For more details…
The use of water in the treatment of disease dates into the distant past. Records of the writings of Hippocrates (460- 377 BC) indicate its early use. it was used extensively in the Roman baths, and also by the Chinese several centuries before Christ, and by the Japanese for the past 900 years. The Spartans of ancient Greece even made the cold bath mandatory by law. During the early middle ages, the use of hydrotherapy throughout much of the European continent decreased dramatically due to negative sentiment towards the baths from the religious leaders in power at the time. However, during this time, Arabic physicians enthusiastically recommended hydrotherapy in the treatment of disease. Towards the late Middle Ages and into the Renaissance, interest in hydrotherapy again began to rise, with baths again being opened across Europe and a rising awareness regarding the importance of hygiene. A small French book was written on the use and benefits of cold in the treatment of disease in 1675. Another book was written by John Wesley in 1747, on use of water in the treatment of many diseases.
There were many peasants, scientist, and physicians who made a great contribution to the use and mastery of Hydrotherapy within the ages of its use.
In 1918 the great influenza pandemic killed an estimated 50 million people. Dr. Abbot believed that those who received hydrotherapy and judicious nursing were the ones who survived the ordeal:
About 1920 Simon Baruch (another pioneer hydro-therapist) wrote: For all the remedial agents in use since the dawn of medicine, water is the only one that has survived all the vicissitudes of doctrinal changes because its rise or fall was always contemporaneous with the rise and fall of intelligence among medical men.”
After a rich history and validation of Hydrotherapy: Today, only a few lifestyle centers still practice hydrotherapy extensively (hydrotherapy as extensively as they did in the past). Hospitals utilize a few hydrotherapy practices today. You are privileged to be among the few who will learn and be reminded the art and science of water treatment= Hydrotherapy.
Simple rules to observe in the administration of Hydrotherapy:
- Keep the treatment room warm and free from drafts.
- Give the person water to drink during the treatment (if treatment is prolonged or causes sweating).
- Cold towels and washcloths should not be dripping wet. Water dripping over ears and down the body can be uncomfortable and also may lead to chilling.
- Do not apply fomentation(s) where there is the danger of hemorrhage or suspected malignancy.
- If a treatment is not skillfully given, the person’s condition can be worsened.
- Clean equipment with bleach or another disinfectant after each treatment.
- The person should be rested before a treatment. If he has just had exercise, let him rest long enough to reach his resting heart rate for at least ten minutes before his treatment.
- Avoid giving hydrotherapy immediately before or after the person has eaten a meal. For best results, start the treatment no sooner than one hour before a meal or wait two hours after a meal.
- Insist that the person rest after the treatment (if the treatment is vigorous, extended, or causes sweating) from 15 minutes
POSSIBLE PROBLEMS DURING TREATMENT:
- The person cannot warm up enough or sweat: Give warm water to drink, apply’ more covers, apply a warm fomentation to the back, or place the feet in a hot foot bath (as long as the person does not have contraindications listed under “hot foot bath”. Link
- Be careful not to spread infections. Wash your hands before and after treatments. Wear gloves and/or a mask if you or the person receiving the treatment is contagious.
- Hyperventilation may occur on rare occasions when the person is losing too much carbon dioxide by breathing too rapidly or too deeply. He may feel light-headed, experience numbness and tingling in his extremities, feel short of breath, and experience other symptoms associated with hyperventilation. Explain to the person the cause of the symptoms, as this often relieves the anxiety, and the hyperventilation goes away on its own. You may have the person breathe slowly and deeply with you, or breathe into a paper bag until the tingling disappears.
Dizziness, faintness, or weakness can be caused by a sudden drop in blood pressure or blood sugar. If the person just stood up suddenly, have them sit down immediately, and wait a few moments before SLOWLY standing again, then wait a few moments before walking anywhere.
The person giving the treatment should always stay nearby to watch for dizziness and help if needed. A cold mitten friction (described in another article) can also be helpful to prevent dizziness or faintness after a vigorous sweating treatment—if done before the person stands up. If the person is diabetic or fasting, you may give a cup of orange juice and crackers to replenish glucose for energy. If there is still no improvement, contact your healthcare provider.
Encouragement “Natural means, used in accordance with God’s will, bring about supernatural results. We ask for a miracle, and the Lord directs the mind to some simple remedy through the world… we are then to cooperate with God, observing the laws of health. Having done all that we possibly can, we are to keep asking in faith for health and strength. We are to eat that (only) food which will preserve the health of the body.”
Ministry of Healing. p. 237.
9 Testimonies, p. 164.
Training Material of Light: Lay Institute for Global Health Training (LIGHT)
Wildwood Lifestyle Center research reports
Loma Linda/ Health and Healing Seminar Series,