Saturday, December 17, 2011


Hydrotherapy means treatment with the use of water in any of its three states; solid (ice); liquid (running water); and gaseous (steam). The most useful state is the liquid state. Water has therapeutic value when its temperature differs from the body temperature, thus changing the physiological stability of the body.
Normally, the body temperature is more or less 98F. Under normal atmospheric temperature and pressure, the healthy human body maintains uniform physiological functions. To preserve uniform
functions, the body must continually make adjustments to its environment. When the weather is hot, there is an appreciable difference between the temperature of the environment and the body. The body adjusts to it by perspiring. Thus by means of evaporation, heat is released from the body. Experiments showed that when a great amount of heat is lost from the body, there are various effects in body functions. When body temperature is increased there are also effects as well.

 In hydrotherapy, the environment of the body is changed by means of water at various temperatures. The body’s response are directly proportional to eh extent of the environmental changes. For example, if a person is placed in a water tub bath at 102F, his pulse rate will increase thereby increasing blood circulation and body temperature. But when ice is applied, there is a sudden constriction of blood vessels resulting in a decreased circulation and slowing body functions are observed.

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