Over the years, you’ve likely heard stories about the therapeutic properties of Epsom salt. This popular home remedy has been hailed for centuries as a natural treatment for a number of ailments—anything from inflammation to insomnia to fibromyalgia.

Today, Epsom salt is used by many walk-in bath users who believe in its health benefits, which include relieving muscle soreness and reducing stress.

Learn below about the benefits of Epsom salt baths and discover why some KOHLER® Walk-In Bath users recommend adding it to their bathing routine.

What is Epsom Salt?

Contrary to what its name suggests, Epsom salt (or magnesium sulfate) is not in fact true salt. It’s actually a naturally occurring chemical compound of magnesium and sulfate.

Epsom salt was named for the English town of Epsom in Surrey where the bitter saline spring was discovered in the early 17th century. Since then, it has been used for many medicinal, beauty, household, and gardening-related purposes.

Most grocery and drug stores carry this product so it’s often touted as an inexpensive, easy to use and safe remedy when used appropriately.

How Does Epsom Salt Work?

The idea behind Epsom salt baths is that the Epsom salt will dissolve in the water and release magnesium and sulfate ions, which are then expected to be absorbed through your skin to deliver the claimed health benefits connected to the minerals. The research on this theory is not fully conclusive, although one study suggests absorption is possible.

What are the Benefits of Epsom Salt?

Water running from nickel faucet of walk-in bathWhen combined with the therapeutic properties of a walk-in bath, Epsom salt may serve as a natural alternative treatment for several conditions and enhance your bathing experience.

A majority of users and some healthcare professionals claim Epsom salt boasts numerous health benefits, which are derived from the magnesium. Benefits include:

Increase Magnesium Intake

According to a University of Birmingham study, bathing in Epsom salts is a safe and easy way to increase sulfate and magnesium levels in the body. Ensuring you have adequate magnesium levels is important because research indicates magnesium plays a role in the normal functioning of the brain, heart and skeletal muscle.

Ease Stress

A common claim is that Epsom salt relieves stress. Magnesium has been shown to reduce anxiety and depression, both important factors in stress management. In fact, one study suggests that sufficient magnesium increases serotonin levels (happiness or relaxation hormone) in the brain, helping to combat treatment-resistant depression.

Induce Sleep

Many people attest to Epsom salt improving their sleep. This may be because poor quality of sleep has been linked to lower levels of magnesium. Research suggests that magnesium may help your body make melatonin, a hormone that encourages sleep.

Reduce Pain and Speed Recovery

Some professional athletes have credited Epsom salt in their recovery regime. For example, Ben Greenfield, one of the nation’s top fitness, triathlon and nutrition experts, recommends that his athletes soak in Epsom salt post-workout to replenish electrolytes, release muscle tension, minimize swelling and speed recovery.

Can I Use Epsom Salt in My Walk-In Bath?

Filled walk-in bath featuring Cintilante Blue bath wallsYes. Epsom salt is safe to use in the KOHLER Walk-In Bath! Just make sure you use it in moderation and rinse your bath thoroughly once you’re finished soaking.

Many of our customers enjoy using Epsom salt in their walk-in bath. For active adults like Vivian, adding a combination of essential oils, Epsom salts and bath bombs to each soak helps to soothe their muscles and relax their mind after a day of work and exercise.

Meanwhile, those with chronic ailments like Barbie can soften their skin and ease their symptoms by soaking in warm water and Epsom salt with a combination of hydrotherapy whirlpool jets and BubbleMassage air jets to achieve a deep tissue massage.

How to Use

Set the water at a warm, comfortable temperature. While the water is running, add the Epsom salt so the minerals will dissolve quicker. Pour in the amount recommended on the package or by your doctor—WebMD suggests 1 to 2 cups. The medical site suggests you should submerge the affected body part in the water for at least 12 minutes to reap the full benefits. Talk to your doctor about how long and how often you should soak in Epsom salt.

Elevate Your Bathing Experience

Adding Epsom salt to your bathing routine may open you to a wide range of health benefits. By taking an Epsom salt bath, KOHLER Walk-In Bath users can experience all the therapeutic benefits their bath has to offer for a truly relaxing soak.