You may have heard that it’s not recommended to use a hot tub if you’re somebody who experiences high blood pressure. This is something that has been regularly discussed in the hot tub and spa industry over recent years.
So what is the relationship between hot tubs and high blood pressure? In this Platinum Spas article, we discuss whether hot tubs help people with high blood pressure, the precautionary steps to take if you do suffer with high blood pressure and more. Read on to find out!
Can I Use a Hot Tub With High Blood Pressure?
Yes, as long as you don’t have extremely high blood pressure, you can soak in a hot tub for periods of up to 10 minutes at a time. Ensure you consult with your doctor beforehand, though, as well as taking extra precautions such as moving from high to low temperatures slowly, not drinking any alcohol and enjoying your hot tub with another person.
What is High Blood Pressure?
High blood pressure, otherwise referred to as “hypertension”, is when the body’s blood vessels have an unusually high pressure level. It can be a serious matter if it’s not dealt with or treated properly.
Can Hot Tubs Help with High Blood Pressure?
According to some studies, it’s possible that taking frequent soaks in hot tubs can help prevent heart attacks and strokes. Dr. Adolph Hutter, professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, says that “The high temperatures in a warm tub or sauna cause your blood vessels to dilate, which lowers blood pressure”.
However, the general guidance here is that if you’re somebody who has experienced heart problems or high blood pressure, you should take a precautionary approach to taking soaks. Read on to learn some of the precautionary steps you can take when using a hot tub with high blood pressure in the future.
Precautions When Using a Hot Tub With High Blood Pressure
Although it’s perfectly safe to enjoy a short soak in a hot tub with high blood pressure, there are a range of precautions you can take, including:
- Speaking with your doctor
- Using a hot tub for a shorter period of time
- Enjoying your hot tub with a friend or family member
- Not using a hot tub if you experience extremely high blood pressure
- Not consuming any alcohol before or during time in a hot tub
- Avoid moving between really hot and cold environments quickly
Speak With Your Doctor
The first and most important precaution when using a hot tub with high blood pressure is speaking with your doctor beforehand. If you’ve been advised to avoid moderate exercise by a doctor in the past, it’s most definitely worth speaking with them prior to your hot tub use.
This is because the effects of sitting in a hot tub could have a similar effect to performing moderate exercise. It’s important not to put too much stress on your body, if you are in this category. Having a conversation with your doctor will help you clarify how high your blood pressure is, and whether you sit in the ‘Extremely High Blood Pressure’ category.
Use Your Hot Tub for a Shorter Period of Time
Hot tubs and high blood pressure don’t go well together if you choose to have an extremely long soak in a hot tub that is producing high temperatures. Because of this, we recommend sticking to a total time of anywhere between 10–15 minutes in your hot tub.
In addition to this, choose a temperature that isn’t too high. Setting your hot tub to 40 degrees might not be the best or most comfortable way to enjoy your spa if you have high blood pressure.
Although we’ve stated a time of between 10 and 15 minutes, it’s also important to be mindful of how you are feeling throughout the experience. If you start to feel light-headed, we recommend getting out of your hot tub as a precaution.
Enjoy Your Hot Tub with a Friend or Family Member
Another precaution to take when combining hot tubs and high blood pressure is to enjoy the experience with someone else. Whether that person is a friend or family member, this is a great piece of advice as they can be on hand to help out if you start to feel light-headed, reducing the risk of your hot tub use.
Don’t Use a Hot Tub if You Have Extremely High Blood Pressure
If you’re unfortunately in the ‘Extremely High Blood Pressure’ category, we recommend avoiding hot tub use, as you’ll be putting yourself at too much risk by doing so.
Don’t Consume Alcohol Before or During Time in Your Hot Tub
Another precaution to take when using a hot tub while having high blood pressure is to avoid consuming alcohol before or during your time in your hot tub. The reason for this is that alcohol can make you feel dizzy or drowsy, and this could make you lose track of your session duration.
If you lose track of your session duration, you’re most likely going to spend more than 15 minutes in your hot tub, which is not advisable for people with high blood pressure.
In addition to this, if you drink alcohol before or during your hot tub session, the combination of the high temperatures and alcohol could increase the risk of you fainting as you exit your hot tub into cooler temperatures.
Avoid Moving Between Very Hot and Cold Environments Quickly
Our final recommendation for dealing with hot tubs and high blood pressure, is to avoid moving between very hot and cold environments in a short space of time. The reason for this is that your blood pressure will move in different directions very quickly, which is bad for the body, and even more so if you experience high blood pressure.
Other Ways to Manage High Blood Pressure
If you are suffering from high blood pressure, there are ways to manage this and improve the situation. This mainly involves making significant lifestyle changes.
The following lifestyle changes help manage high blood pressure:
- Losing weight if you are overweight
- Performing more exercise
- Eating a healthier diet
- Reducing the amount of salt in your diet
- Reducing alcohol intake
- Quitting smoking
- Having a better standard of sleep
- Reducing levels of stress
If lifestyle changes are hard to come by, there are different medications you can take to help manage your high blood pressure. This is something that can be prescribed to you upon the recommendation of your doctor.
The relationship between hot tubs and high blood pressure is one that should be dealt with sensibly, taking a precautionary approach, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t enjoy a hot tub at all if you have high blood pressure. By efficiently adopting our recommended precautionary steps, you can enjoy your hot tub with friends and family all year around!
We hope that you learned something new today in this Platinum Spas article. If you have any further questions around this topic, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Frequently Asked Questions
It’s recommended that pregnant women and people with particularly bad heart disease, including angina, should avoid using a hot tub, as well as people who experience extremely high blood pressure.
Soaking in a hot tub often increases the heart rate of an individual and lowers their blood pressure. This is why it’s good practice to consult with your doctor prior to soaking if you have experienced heart problems.