Over the years we have seen many salt therapy facilities, along with social and mainstream media, compare halotherapy to spending time at the beach. While many people have experienced a sense of well-being after spending time at the beach, and in particular, talk about the benefits of the salty air, there is a distinct difference between dry salt therapy (halotherapy) and the air at the beach.
First of all, the salt in the air by the beach is not dry, it is moist and wet. The salt that is in the air is due to the evaporation process from the ocean. Once a salt particle becomes even slightly saturated, it can no longer be absorbent. One of the main characteristics of halotherapy is using dry salt, which is super absorbent. Therefore, if a salt particle is already saturated, like those by the beach and ocean, you cannot receive the benefit of inhaling dry salt. The inhaled dry salt, which is a primary principle of halotherapy, acts like a super-absorbent sponge that attracts and pulls out the mucous, allergens and foreign substances that get trapped in our respiratory system. Given that salt is water-soluble, this is then transported and passed through our waste system.
There are benefits to inhaling saturated salt but it’s difficult to measure concentration levels at the beach as opposed to a salt room. In addition, negative ions occur in nature such as after a thunderstorm, waterfalls, and ocean waves that provide a sense of well-being. Lastly, many people receive benefits from being in the saltwater where the saline provides healing to the skin, as well as the meditative nature of the ocean sounds.
We can understand that salt room facilities reference being by the ocean as a metaphor for the healing benefits for halotherapy, but there is a distinct difference between wet/moist salt therapy and dry salt therapy.