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Healing with Water

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Water, the most precious commodity in the world, is essential to survival. We have to be concerned about the purity and preservation of our water supplies. And not just for drinking. Water therapy is a large component of natural healing that is not often used in this country.

Water, the most precious commodity in the world, is essential to survival. We have to be concerned about the purity and preservation of our water supplies. And not just for drinking. Water therapy is a large component of natural healing that is not often used in this country.

First, we need to ingest approximately two to three litres of liquid a day depending on what we do. Without replacing lost liquid (even during one night's sleep we lose about one litre!) we age faster, get brittle bones, constipation, kidney and skin problems, joint aches and pains, circulation and liver problems. Lack of liquid leads to a total breakdown and premature death.

The body uses water to transport nutritious substances, remove metabolic waste, regulate temperature and keep tissues firm and elastic. Children and senior people are often not thirsty. Too bad, folks drink anyway. You need water to grow into a healthy person and to remain so in your old age.

Water in all its forms (liquid, steam, ice, hot or cold) is also the medium to be used on the outside of the body for certain healing reactions. It's called hydrotherapy, the art of healing with water. It's used for prevention of disease and alongside conventional treatment. It improves immune responses, speeds up healing, stabilizes circulation and eliminates or diminishes minor aches and pains without drug therapy. And it has no side effects!

Hydrotherapy can safely be done at home. When you shower, bathe or use steam to relieve a stuffy nose you are using hydrotherapy.

Problems such as poor immunity or circulation, irregular blood pressure (high or low), angina and heart attacks (before or after), nervous breakdowns, digestion and liver, stomach, kidney insufficiency, rheumatic or arthritic pains, impotence and all over poor health respond to water therapy.

Because many everyday complaints have to do with poor circulation, it's important to hydrate your body. Whenever using warm water for washing hands, feet, face and hair, showering or bathing, always rinse for about 15 to 20 seconds with cold water. Warm water removes natural body oils and moisture from the surface. This has a skin aging effect and widens veins and arteries within. The cold water provides a bit of a "shock" so that the fine blood vessels in the skin tighten up. During longer warm water immersions like a shower or bath, the deeper veins and arteries react likewise.

This exercise provides training for the blood vessels and the circulation becomes stronger. With better circulation the blood pressure changes as well. During warm water immersion the pressure sinks because the blood vessels are wider and retain more blood. The cold water tightens the "pipes" and the pressure goes up. The heart gets stronger, blood pressure stabilizes, circulation increases. The blood carries oxygen and nutrients and picks up waste on the way back to the lungs. Thus detoxification will improve.

Simple Water Treatments

  • Headache - Try an alternate foot bath. Take two containers high enough to reach somewhere below your knees (large paint pails, plastic garbage cans). Place in your bathtub; fill one with cold and the other with warm water and draw a stool close to the bathtub. Immerse feet in warm water for five minutes, then into the cold water for 20 seconds. Place both feet back into the warm water for five minutes, then finish with 20 seconds cold water. Dry your feet and pull on long warm socks. Lie in your bed for 30 minutes (no reading) or go for a walk. To combat a light headache use the cold arm bath. Fill any sink with cold water. Place first the right, then the left arm into it. Remain until the water "bites" or up to 40 seconds. It's important that your hands are warm before this treatment. No cold treatment on a cold body, ever!
  • Back pain - Place a plastic stool to sit on under your shower. Turn on the warm water with a setting that is more like a stream than a spray and let it run over your full back, gradually increasing the temperature. A total of three to four minutes will thoroughly warm and relax the muscles. Dry the back, slip on something warm and go back to bed for 30 to 40 minutes and rest.
    Another way to deal with back pain is the ice treatment. Let someone help you by softly moving an ice cube over the painful area. Ice has a pain-reducing effect.
  • Problems falling asleep - For cold feet, have a warm footbath just before going to bed. Use "wet socks" for hot feet. Soak one pair of long tube socks in cold water and pull on. Put another slightly longer dry pair on top when you wake up take them off. Another method is cold lower body washing. Just before going to bed use a folded kitchen towel and wash the lower body. Without drying, put on pyjamas and go to bed. Often any one of these methods works well the first time.
  • Fever - A rise in temperature is the body's natural method of dealing with flu bugs or viruses. If the fever gets dangerously high, use cold calf wrappers. Wrap a roughly woven kitchen towel dipped in very cold water around each calf and cover with a thick bath towel. Remove after 20 minutes and replace. This can be done three or four times and then repeated after a few hours if necessary.
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