Cold Shower for Anxiety: Does It Help?

You may have heard of taking cold showers for muscle aches or to simply help you wake up quickly. Additionally, there’s discussion of their role in anxiety treatment when used as water therapy, or hydrotherapy.

Anxiety is a mental health condition that causes excessive fears and worries. While occasional anxiety and stress are normal parts of life, anxiety disorders can interfere with your daily activities, sometimes making it difficult to participate in work and social activities.

Chronic anxiety can be treated in a number of different ways by a mental health professional. Sometimes, complementary therapies may help, too. Cold showers are considered complementary, and their roots are thought to be traced to Ayurvedic medicine techniques.

Before you face a cold shower though, consider whether braving colder water will actually help your anxiety symptoms. Also, talk to your doctor about other ways you can manage anxiety for the long term.

Does it work?

While cold showers could, in theory, help minimize the symptoms of anxiety, more research is needed to prove that cold water is an effective anxiety treatment. Some studies have investigated hydrotherapy in treating other mental health conditions, which may suggest similar benefits for anxiety management.

One such 2008 study reviewed the role of hydrotherapy in the treatment of depression. Participants were noted to experience an improvement in their symptoms after several weeks of hydrotherapy. This consisted of 2- to 3-minute sessions of cold water showers at 68°F (20°C), one to two times per day.

Anxiety often leads to an increased heart rate. While some studies have noted that cold hydrotherapy could increase heart rate in people with depression, others have found that cold water immersion can lower your heart rate by up to 15 percent.

Overall, studies have proven that regular cold water showers can boost your immune system. Anxiety isn’t necessarily caused by lower immune function per se, but it is linked to increased inflammation that could lead to more frequent illnesses.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *