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Are Hot Tubs Good or Bad for You?

That steamy scorching tub is looking your identify after a protracted day. And these muscle aches you’ve acquired? They certain may use the stress aid. But are scorching tubs protected for everybody? And are you certain you’re not immersing your self in a bath of scorching germs? Integrative medication doctor Irina Todorov, MD, explains find out how to use scorching tubs along with your well being in thoughts.

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Are scorching tubs protected?

Immersing your self in scorching water feels good as a result of it relaxes muscle rigidity and relieves joint ache.

“Soaking in a hot tub may even boost your mental health,” says Dr. Todorov.

But that doesn’t imply everybody ought to take a dip.

“Hot tubbing can have risks, depending on your health,” cautions Dr. Todorov. “Even if you don’t have health issues, you can get sick from a dirty hot tub. And the water needs to be a safe temperature so you don’t get burned or overheated.”

Who ought to keep away from scorching tubs?

Ask your healthcare supplier earlier than utilizing a scorching tub in the event you take care of any of the next:

Heart illness

Hot tubs really feel good as a result of they increase your physique temperature barely. But you probably have cardiovascular disease, this rise in temperature may stress your coronary heart.

“As your body heats up, your blood pressure drops,” explains Dr. Todorov. “Your heart responds by beating faster, like what you might experience with exercise. If your provider has told you to avoid strenuous activity, skip the hot tub, too.”


Pregnancy can do a quantity in your again, however don’t search for aid in a scorching tub.

“Using a hot tub during pregnancy may harm a developing fetus,” warns Dr. Todorov. “Avoid hot tubs or saunas when you’re pregnant, especially during the first trimester.”

If you determine to soak in your second or third trimester, think about using your property bathtub as an alternative.

“With your own tub, you can make sure it’s not too hot,” she provides. “And you won’t be exposed to chemicals that can irritate sensitive skin during pregnancy.”


Having a seizure in a scorching tub can result in drowning in the event you don’t have somebody close by who will help.

“If you have epilepsy or a seizure disorder, only use a hot tub with a trusted partner,” Dr. Todorov advises. “Your partner should know what to do if you have a seizure and be able to pull you out of the hot tub.”

If an individual has a seizure in a scorching tub:

  • Get them out of the water.
  • Gently lay them on the bottom and roll them onto their aspect.
  • Put one thing gentle and flat beneath their head, like a folded towel or a life jacket.
  • Call 911.

Alcohol and different substances

Drinking alcohol or smoking marijuana or utilizing different mind-altering substances can lower your consciousness, which isn’t protected while you’re scorching tubbing.

“If you’re intoxicated, you might not realize that you’re overheating,” notes Dr. Todorov. “These substances may also make you more likely to fall asleep in the hot tub. Only use a hot tub if you’re fully awake and aware so you can get out when you need to.”

Medications that trigger drowsiness

Falling asleep in a scorching tub sounds stress-free, but it surely’s harmful.

“People assume only children drown in hot tubs, but this isn’t the case,” Dr. Todorov states. “Adults drown in hot tubs, too, and it often happens when they fall asleep in the water. Taking medications that make you tired greatly increases this risk. If your medication says ‘may cause drowsiness’ on the label, don’t get in the hot tub after taking it.”

Hot tubs and germs

Hot tubs and swimming swimming pools can even make you sick in the event that they’re not clear and handled with the best germ-killing chemical compounds. But even a clear, handled scorching tub could be a germ scorching spot.

“Properly balanced chlorine kills a lot of germs, but it can’t kill everything,” says Dr. Todorov.

Germs that may lurk in scorching tubs embody:

  • Cryptosporidium: This parasite causes cryptosporidiosis (crypto), an an infection that may trigger extreme diarrhea. You can get crypto in the event you swallow even a tiny quantity of contaminated scorching tub water.
  • Giardia: This parasite can unfold through contaminated scorching tubs and swimming areas. It could cause giardiasis an infection, which results in vomiting, diarrhea and abdomen cramps.
  • Legionella: This micro organism causes Legionnaires’ disease, a probably severe lung an infection. The micro organism can stay in a scorching tub’s steam. When you breathe the steam, you may get sick — even in the event you by no means swallow the water.
  • Norovirus: This virus causes “stomach flu,” and might unfold in scorching tubs from an contaminated particular person’s fecal matter. It solely takes a microscopic quantity of the virus to get sick in the event you swallow contaminated water. Plus, folks usually have small quantities of fecal matter on their our bodies with out ever figuring out it.
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa: This micro organism causes “hot tub folliculitis,” which leaves your pores and skin itchy and pink, generally with small pus-filled blisters.

Prevent scorching tub diseases

You don’t need to let germs maintain you away from scorching tubbing. You can decrease your threat of getting sick — and making others sick — in the event you:

  • Check your pores and skin: Stay out of scorching tubs you probably have an open reduce or sore. Bandages received’t maintain germs from getting in or out of pores and skin wounds.
  • Follow cleansing and upkeep pointers: If you personal a scorching tub, comply with the producer’s instructions for protecting it clear. Owning a scorching tub entails commonly checking the pH, chemical steadiness and cleanliness.
  • Look it over: Avoid scorching tubs that don’t look clear or have indicators of mould, slime or a movie on the edges.
  • Sit upright: Keep your face above the floor and keep away from swallowing any water.
  • Skip in the event you’ve been sick: Don’t use a scorching tub or go swimming in the event you’ve been vomiting or had diarrhea prior to now 5 days.
  • Wash up: Take a bathe and totally wash your palms earlier than and after scorching tubbing.

How lengthy are you able to sit in a scorching tub?

Cap your scorching tub time at quarter-hour — or shorter in the event you begin to really feel woozy or dehydrated. If you soak for longer than this, you threat overheating or experiencing a harmful drop in your blood stress. And in the event you’re soothing a muscle harm, scorching tubbing too lengthy can enhance irritation and make the harm worse.

Be picky about your scorching tub  

If you’re in good well being and never pregnant, you don’t need to abstain from scorching tubbing. You can maximize your security in the event you maintain the temperature under 104 levels Fahrenheit (40 levels Celsius) and take heed to your physique. Get out in the event you really feel nauseated or dizzy or get a headache.

“Hot tubbing feels great, which is why so many people enjoy it,” says Dr. Todorov. “Taking a few precautions and checking for cleanliness will help you safely enjoy a nice soak.”

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