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New Study Finds That Baths Are Good For Depression

 Taking a hot bath every day could actually treat depression better than exercise can, according to a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Freiburg.

Although spending time in the tub won’t necessarily make depression go away entirely, it could ease some of the symptoms. The study was conducted using a sample of 45 people, all of whom were struggling with depression.

The participants were split into two groups. The first was told to soak in 104-degree water daily for 30 minutes at a time, whereas the second was instructed to do aerobic exercise for 45 minutes twice per week.

After eight weeks of repetition, the researchers used a common depression scale to measure the degree of depression in the participants. They found that members of the first group scored an average of six points lower than they did before the experiment began.

In contrast, the group that had been engaging in exercise scored an average of only three points lower. This means that the bath was the more effective method for treating depression.

Researchers believe that bath time is effective at treating depression due to the impact it has on the body’s circadian rhythm, or the body’s internal clock. The so-called “body clock” is responsible for organ function, temperature regulation and many more.

Those battling depression often have a disrupted or delayed circadian rhythm (which is why insomnia is a common symptom of the condition). It appears that the elevated temperature that the body experiences through baths can have a positive impact on depression sufferers’ circadian rhythms.

It must be kept in mind that this was only a small study, so a lot more research is required in order to establish with certainty that baths could be a treatment for depressions. In the meantime, it’s still a wonderful experience to have a hot bath, so jump right in if you’re up for one!  

 

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Images by Deposit Photos

 

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