What is Epsom salt?
Epsom salt is a commonly occurring compound that looks like table salt.
Unlike your traditional table salt, Epsom salt is a compound of Magnesium and sulfate also known as magnesium sulfate.
Epsom salt is known for its health and beauty uses.
It holds a lot of value due to its ability to heal and manage a lot of body conditions.
Epsom salt was discovered in the early 1800s and used across Europe for its medicinal and cosmetic purposes.
Although it looks like table salt, it is completely different in chemical structure.
Magnesium sulfate is a mineral that is needed by the human body.
We consume the mineral through farm grown plants and drink it within the water.
Unfortunately, in the past three decades, the levels of Magnesium sulfate have been decreasing across the world.
This attributed to over development of agricultural land and leaching of soils.
The deficiency of magnesium sulfate among the modern generation attributed to the overuse of prescription medication and consumption of fast foods and processed foods.
Epson salt has anti-inflammatory properties and exfoliation properties.
This is the reason why its used for the treatment of muscle aches and rejuvenation of dry skins.
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Himalayan Salt vs. Epsom Salt
Epson salt is more often than not mistaken for Himalayan salt.
This could be because the Himalayan salt also holds some health benefits.
Epson salt is not a salt but a mineral found in water while the Himalayan salt is an actual salt.
Epson salt merely is magnesium which is bonded to sulfur and oxygen.
It draws its name from a small town called Epsom in Surrey, England where it was discovered.
The Himalayan salt, on the other hand, has Magnesium, sulfur and 82 different minerals and elements.
Although the Himalayan salt is also known for having some health benefits, most of them are just related to it being salt.
Some of the properties of salts include being anti-microbial, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial.
Epsom Salt Baths
Have you hurt yourself while working out or do you have any joint pains?
The Epson baths may be what you need. Epson salt has been used for ages to ease pains of all sorts. A soak in the bathtub under Epson salt water may be all you need to get rid of your pain
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Where To Buy Epsom Salt
Epson salt is found in most drug stores – usually stored with aspirin and laxatives.
It may also be bought from groceries and natural food stores.
The salt is not expensive; a large box can be acquired for a couple of dollars.
Epsom salt is not the same as dead sea salt. It is different from the fancy bathtub crystals too.
The crystals are made from the different chemical composition.
When buying the Epsom salt, make sure it is labeled as Epsom salt and nothing else.
How to use Epsom Salt
When mixed with water, the salt breaks down to Magnesium and sulfate.
When you soak your body in the Epsom salt water, these compounds are absorbed by your skin into your body.
Besides, you also get the relaxing benefits of the warm bathtub water in the process.
Epsom baths are used to treat various conditions such as Arthritis pains, ingrown toenails, insomnia, fibromyalgia, psoriasis, sore muscles, sunburns and tired/ swollen feet among others.
While there are plenty of myths about such remedies, most of them do not have actual scientific backing.
The Epsom bath is one of the few proven methods that are being used by many individuals to control body pain.
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Epsom Salt Soak
The water should be relatively warm and not hot.
This means that you should be able to touch the water comfortably.
Add the recommended amounts of salt while the tub is still running to help in dissolving.
The Epsom salt usually has recommendations on usage on the packaging material.
For a standard bathtub, it is often 1 to 2 cups.
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If you are using the salt for medication purposes, it is advisable to stick to the amounts recommended by your doctor.
Avoid using Epsom salt in bathtubs or pools with jets unless the manufacturer recommends it.
Once the salt is fairly dissolved in the water, immerse your entire body in the water or the part of the body that hurts.
Relax for about 12 minutes then get out of the water.
The time you spend in the water and how often you take a bath may vary depending on your health condition.
If you are using Epsom salt to treat a known medical condition such as Arthritis, it is best to stick to your doctor’s advice.
On the contrary, if you want to ease of some muscle pain after a workout or a long day, a 12-minute bath is okay.
Epsom Salt Cleanse
Epsom salt cleanse is the process of detoxifying the body by the use of Epsom salt.
When done correctly, Epsom salt can detoxify the body, treat constipation and solve digestion health issues among other things.
It should be noted that the Epsom salt cleanse comes with some side effects.
There are plenty of detox substances available on the market today.
The process of body cleansing is a standard health improvement procedures.
The process leads to overall clear skin, improved digestion and weight loss.
Unlike the other available detox products that are loaded with synthetic chemicals, Epsom salt is a pure naturally occurring element.
Epsom Salt Laxative
It is a magnesium sulfate heptahydrate. The substance is approved by the FDA and also used as an ingredient in homemade bath salts.
The use of Epsom as a salt laxative is common and can be done at home safely without any worries.
In fact Epsom salt cleanse is now among the most popular forms of body detox among health-conscious individuals.
The procedure is sometimes referred to as Epsom salt colon cleanse. It involves the drinking of Epsom salt solution which is prepared by dissolving the salt in water.
The solution made by Epsom salt is hypertonic, hence it attracts water from the other parts of the body thus easing bowel movement.
The Epsom salt cleanse can be used to clean the liver as well as the gallbladder.
The amounts of stones visible in the bowel keep on reducing with time.
The use of Epsom salt for cleansing helps in the removal of cholesterol and excess bile which are responsible for the formation of stones.
While the liver cleansing process can be done at home, you should only do it after consulting your doctor.
The process should be done under specific instructions especially for those under different medication.
Excess consumption of Epsom salt may result in life-threatening conditions.
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There is no a strict recipe for the consumption of Epsom salt. However, you should avoid taking the salt in excessive amounts.
The usual way of consumption includes using 1 to 2 teaspoons of Epsom salt in a cup of lukewarm water.
Add the salt to the water and stir continuously until the salt is completely dissolved.
Epsom Salt Effectiveness
If you have ever used the Epsom salt for any purpose, then you can tell the effectiveness.
It is one of the most effective body cleansing products.
In many medical facilities, doctors prescribe the use of Epsom salt before they can perform a colonoscopy.
The Epsom cleanse is beneficial in speeding up digestion, clearing the colon, treating constipation, removing gallstones, and getting rid of other body toxins.
Epsom Salt Side Effects
While the medical benefits of Epsom salt are plenty, it also comes with a wide array of side effects.
Taking excessive amounts of the salt may be very dangerous for your body.
High concentrations of the salt may lead to life-threatening situations.
The Epsom salt goes through the digestive system drawing water from the other parts of the body.
In case the concentration of the salt is too high, it may draw more water than expected hence leading to dehydration.
The use of the Epsom cleanse can also lead to stomach gas and stomach cramps.
Most of the commonly used detox cleansers contain harmful chemicals, but that is not the case with Epsom.
Always remember the adverse side effects at the back of your mind while doing the process.
You should see a doctor if you feel that your body is reacting in a way that is not normal.
This may include great pain from stomach cramps, fainting slow heart rate.
Epsom Salt Uses
Relax Your Body
When you are feeling tired and fatigue, the Epsom bath may be what you need.
The magnesium and sulfate dissolved in the water during the Epsom bath are effective in bringing relaxation.
They are absorbed by the skin hence leading to relaxation.
Medical studies suggest that magnesium ions that break away from the salt promote the production of serotonin which helps reduce the effects of adrenaline.
The Magnesium also plays a critical role in the production of energy cells in the body hence helping you feel invigorated.
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Epsom Salt for Relieve Pain and Cramping
The Epsom salt as absorbed through the skin during Epsom baths can help in relieving tension, pain, and inflammation in joints.
You can also benefit from the Epsom bath when you are feeling tired.
It is equally used to treat tired feet, headaches, to soothe stomach cramps among other pains.
The warm soak has the therapeutic benefits of relaxing muscles and reducing pain in all parts of the body.
Epsom Salt for Muscle and Nerve Function
Apart from its function in relieving muscle pain and cramping, the magnesium sulfate has other health benefits such as controlling enzymatic functions.
It helps in regulating fluid retention in body cells.
It also helps to facilitate the body use of calcium ions to transmit chemical signals within the nervous system.
This is essential in boosting the overall performance of the nerves.
Epsom Salt For Arterial Health
Epsom salt has been used successfully in improving blood circulation and as a result, reduce cardiovascular diseases.
The magnesium sulfate is an active anti-inflammation substance and hence protects the elasticity of arteries.
The healthier your arteries, the better the blood circulation.
Proper blood circulation means fewer health risks regarding blood clots, plaque buildup, and damaged veins.
It is recommended to soak yourself in an Epsom bath three to four times a week to relieve blood pressure and improve your overall cardiovascular health.
Epsom Salt for Blood Sugar Regulation
Both the Magnesium and sulfate compounds of Epsom salt are essential in regulating the body’s production of insulin.
Regular use of Epsom either through the bath or orally can go a long way in balancing your blood sugar.
This will in the long run help lower your risk of diabetes and help you improve your overall body energy.
Epsom Salt Constipation
The most common use of Epsom salt is as a laxative.
Simply dissolve one teaspoon of Epsom salt in lukewarm water and drink.
This should only be done once in a day.
If you do not get relieved or the symptoms get severe, you need to see a doctor.
Using too much Epsom salt may cause detrimental health effects on your body.
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Epsom Salt for Splinters
To remove stubborn splinters merely mix some lukewarm water with Epsom salt and use the solution to soak the affected part of your body.
After 5 minutes, the Magnesium sulfate will reduce inflammation around the wound and hence soften the splinter for easier removal.
Epsom Salt for Bruises
The anti-inflammation properties of Epsom can be useful in soothing bruises and sprains.
Use 2 cups of the salt to prepare your bath with warm water and soak the affected area.
After some few minutes, you will feel relieved.
Epsom Salt for Feet
Many people use the Epsom salt in treating feet pains and joint pains.
However, most people do not know the healing power of Epsom when it comes to correcting ingrown toenails.
The Epsom salt can treat fungal infections on the toes due to its antifungal properties.
You can treat your feet by merely adding a half a cup of Epsom salt to warm water and soak your feet for about 30 minutes.
This will help reduce burning and itching and heal the fungi infections faster.
Ease Discomfort of Gout
Magnesium sulfate sinks through the skin at a high-speed rate.
To deal with effects of discomfort gout, merely dissolve three teaspoons of Epsom salt in warm water and soak the part affected by gout.
This will help alleviate pain in the swollen and aching joints.
Cosmetic Uses Of Epsom
Exfoliate Dead Skin
By merely rubbing a handful of Epsom salt over damp skin, you can remove a substantial amount of dead skin.
This treatment can be applied on hands and legs to help rejuvenate the glow of the skin.
Magnesium sulfate baths are also useful in softening your skin and removal of dead cells.
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Natural Face Cleanser
To cleanse your face with Epsom salt, use it as an overnight treatment.
Mix a teaspoon of the salt with your regular cleanser for natural treatment.
You can also create your cleanser by merely chopping small pieces of tomatoes.
Mix the pieces with one real egg, a teaspoon of aloe vera gel, half a teaspoon of Vitamin B5 and a teaspoon of Epsom salt.
You can add some drops of oil.
Apply the mixture on your face and let it stay for about 15 minutes then rinse with warm water.
Remove Styling Product Build-up
To successfully remove the buildup of hair sprays and other styling products from your hair, just mix a cup of Epsom salt and lemon juice in a gallon of water.
Cover it for about 24 hours before using it. Pour it over your hair and leave it on for about 20 minutes.
Finally, wash and condition the hair.
Add Volume to Hair
We all love the voluminous hair. To increase the volume of your hair, mix an all natural sulfate free conditioner with Epsom salt in equal measures.
Warm the mixture to about 37 degrees celsius then work it through your hair.
Leave it in your hair for about 20 minutes before cleansing. You can do this regularly in a span of two weeks to get the best results.
Usage and Precaution
Here are some essential guidelines to guide you on what to do and not to do when using the salt.
Never use more dosage of the salt than recommended on the package or as prescribed by the doctor.
Even if the symptoms don’t go away, simply stick to the recommendations.
Do not use the salt as a laxative without a prescription. Especially in cases of constipation, bowel obstruction, severe stomach pains, vomiting toxic megacolon or any other purpose that you may wish to use the salt that has lasted for more than a week.
If you experience rectal bleeding or miss bowel movement after using the salt, you should consult a doctor immediately.
These may be signs of dangerous conditions.
Do not use the salt when you are pregnant or planning to get pregnant without informing your doctor.
Tell your doctor about your usage of the salt if you are a breastfeeding mother.
It is not certain whether the salt can harm the baby through the milk.
How should I take Epsom Salt?
To take the salt orally, dissolve 1 to 2 teaspoons into lukewarm water and mix.
Drink all the mixture right away. You can flavor it up by adding some drops of lemon juice.
To use the Epsom salt as a bath, dissolve 2 to 3 cups of the salt in a bathtub and soak the affected body part or the entire body.
The bath water should be warm but not hot.
The same is done in a bucket for small injuries.
What should I avoid while taking Epsom Salt?
Oral consumption of Epsom salt may make it difficult for your body to absorb other drugs.
Avoid taking antibiotics within 2 to 3 hours before or after taking Epsom salt orally.
What drugs will affect Epsom Salt?
Many drugs can affect Epsom salt.
It is usually advisable to avoid Epsom salt when you are under medication of any kind.
Over the counter prescriptions, doctors prescriptions, as well as herbal medicine should never be taken with Epsom salt unless directed by a doctor.
You should reveal your use of Epsom salt to your doctor and all the healthcare professionals in your life.
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Epsom salt is a naturally occurring synthesis of Magnesium and sulfate.
This compound is very vital for the human health and comes with an array of benefits.
The salt is for both beauty and health purposes.
The salt has anti-inflammation properties which make it suitable as a pain reliever.
Using the Epsom salt for health purposes can be done through the oral or external applications.
The use of oral Epsom salt may come with some side effects.
You should only use the salt in recommended amounts and follow the directions thoroughly.
If you encounter any side effects, you should reach out to a doctor as soon as possible.
Avoid using Epsom salt if you are sick or under any medication.
You should also notify your doctor when you are going to use Epsom salt for lactating mothers and pregnant women.