Water Therapy is a form of alternative medicine. It is a natural therapy that involves the use of water internally (drinking) or externally (bathing). There are different types of water used in Water Therapy: fresh water, seawater, and spring water.
It started as early as 18th century when Richard Russell, an English doctor, developed the varieties of water-related treatments. It gained popularity in the 19th century when people started to shift to alternative medicine because of the occurrence of malingering and persistent illnesses.
According to some alternative medicine practitioners, the benefits of Water Therapy range from psychological, physical fitness and well-being, to the cure and prevention of illnesses. Each type has different sets of benefits, too.
The forms of Water Therapy are classified according to the methods and the type of water that is used. These forms include the Chinese or Indian Water Therapy, physical Water Therapy or water exercise, seawater therapy, and healing or spa Water Therapy.
The Chinese or Indian Water Therapy involves drinking four glasses, or roughly 640 ml, of water upon waking up. After drinking, it is advised not to drink or eat anything for 45 minutes. After the meal, it will take another two hours before the person undergoing Water Therapy could drink again. Chinese or Indian Water Therapy is known to cure headache, body ache, throat diseases, and other more serious illnesses like arthritis, tuberculosis, diabetes, and heart system disorders.
The physical Water Therapy includes more vigorous activities like swimming, swimming pool games, and water walking exercise. Physical Water Therapy relieves pain and muscle spasm, brings back walking patterns, increases joint range and muscle strength, enhances balance, and helps in recovery from surgery and sports injuries. The buoyancy of the water supports and lessens stresses on the joints and encourages free movement. Water also acts as resistance to help build muscle strength.
Seawater therapy involves bathing and swimming in concentrated seawater. Concentrated seawater has been found to be the mildest water to the human body. Its higher concentration of magnesium, sodium, nitrate-nitrogen, iodine, phosphate-phosphorus, and silicate-silicon is found to be beneficial for the body, even to a diseased organ. The iodine content of seawater also boosts thyroid activity. Seawater helps in weight loss and cellulite control.
Lastly, maybe the most expensive among all forms of Water Therapy is the spa therapy. The effects of this type of Water Therapy are mainly psychological since its purpose is primarily for relaxation and stress removal. The benefits of spa therapy include relaxation due to warmth and weightlessness, increased feeling of health and well-being, and improved self-confidence and mood.
Water Therapy is a natural one. Thus, there are no observed harmful side effects except more frequent bowel movement. However, the body can later adapt to the increased water intake.