Actual Problems of Application of Salt rooms and Halotherapy in European Balneology and Spa Resorts*
Artificial salt caves are being developed since the end of 80s. The first salt room equipped with salt aerosol generator was built in 1990 in the All-Union Institute of Pulmonology in St.Petersburg. The method was called "halotherapy". Halotherapy was being developed as a medical method in which the air environment of dry salt aerosol is reproduced by special equipment.
Salt rooms began appearing outside of Russia and the Baltic countries 10-12 years ago. As opposed to Russia, another path of development can be observed in other countries. The first salt rooms were constructed by builders and were immediately available for commercial use without any professional supervision. People were attracted to the external imitation of salt caves of various designs. Despite the lack of the most important thing, dry salt aerosol, the owners of such rooms often claimed categorically that it was possible to cure asthma, allergies etc. in their rooms.
At present, there are many different types of salt therapies, realized with equipment of questionable quality produced by "yesterday found" companies; and many are called halotherapy. The fashionable trend and the lack of reliable information about halotherapy have led to the commercial spread of techniques, often based on pseudo-scientific information. Of the hundreds of salt rooms built in Europe, only a few are equipped right to provide the full, effective, and safe use of the method of controlled halotherapy. This situation hinders the advancement of halotherapy, and arouses distrust in the medical community.
Thanks to the possibility of a differentiated approach, controlled halotherapy has the potential to be used in the health resort and SPA industries. This method can become an effective means of respiratory hygiene. There is great potential for the use of halotherapy in children's prevention and rehabilitation.
* Material of the lecture of Alina V. Chervinskaya, MD, PhD presented in the the 38th World Congress of ISMH, Granada - Spain, Lanjaron, 20-23 June 2012. Chervinskaya A. Salt rooms and halotherapy in europcan health resorts and spas: fashionable trend or real therapy? // Balnea. Medical hydrology and balneology: environmental aspects. -2012.- Num. 6.- P. 235- 236.