Taking a hot shower can soothe muscle fatigue and relieve muscular tension. But a hot shower can also raise your body temperature.
And not everything about heat is good. There are reasons why you might want to prefer lukewarm and even cold showers instead of regularly soaking in hot water.
Here’s everything to know about how hot showers affect your body temperature.
Why Taking a Hot Shower Raises Your Body Temperature?
Heat is transferable, which means that an object with less heat will receive heat from a hotter object. The bigger the difference, the faster the heat transfer. In short, taking a hot shower can quickly raise your internal temperature because some of the heat from the hot water shower gets transferred to your body.
But how much heat is transferred will depend on a few factors. Sometimes, a hot shower can raise your temperature significantly to the point where you feel hot and even sweaty afterward. Other times, your temperature will rise by only a tiny amount. You might not even notice that there’s a difference unless you measure your temperature with a thermometer before and after your hot shower.
Why Do You Feel Feverish After a Hot Shower?
Feeling feverish or hot after a steamy shower is common when there’s high humidity in your bathroom. Humidity is higher on warm days unlike in the cold season when the air is dry. Or maybe your bathroom is particularly humid due to poor ventilation.
High humidity combined with the increased body temperature after a hot shower can leave you feeling slightly hot, sometimes sticky and sweaty too.
Feeling sweaty and icky post-shower is often enough to want to jump right back in the shower for round two. But there’s a simple tip that you can do to avoid feeling feverish after a hot shower – gradually lower the water temperature when you’re nearing the end of your shower.
If you’re taking a hot shower, consider lowering it from hot to warm, even if it’s just for the last 10 seconds of your shower. It only takes ten seconds or so for the body to adjust to a new temperature. You can also rinse your hair with cold water to remove any hot water from your scalp. These tips will help you stay fresh and eliminate that sweaty and sticky feeling after taking a hot shower.
Adequately Hot Showers: What Are the Benefits?
Hot showers are incredibly relaxing after a long, tiring day. But there are even more reasons why increasing water temperature in the shower can be beneficial for you.
- Relieve Muscle Tension
This is why hot showers are so relaxing because the higher water temperature is fantastic for relieving muscle tension. A powerful showerhead that can provide a steady stream of hot water that acts like a mini massager to soothe stiff muscles on your shoulders, neck, and back.
- Relieve Cold and Flu Symptoms
The steam from a hot shower acts as a natural decongestant, which helps relieve common cold and flu symptoms. The hot steam provides the moisturizing that your nasal passages need, opening your airways and loosening up phlegm, allowing you to breathe easier and feel better overall.
- Improve Blood Circulation
Warm water from the shower can improve your blood flow by naturally widening your blood vessels. This happens when the body is exposed to high temperatures, like when taking a hot or warm shower. It is especially helpful for people with chronic health issues.
- Lower Blood Pressure
Warm showers are great for people with hypertension as the higher water temperature can help lower blood pressure. However, you need to be mindful that a hot shower that’s a little too hot can also increase your heart rate, which is not good if you have a heart condition.
Potential Risks of Taking Hot Showers
In general, hot showers provide plenty of health and skin benefits. The consequences arise when you overdo it, like taking an excessively long or hot shower. In that case, you could experience these potential risks.
- Taking extended hot showers can strip your skin of its natural oils, leaving you with dry and irritated skin post-shower. If you have skin issues like eczema, the higher temperature of the shower water will only worsen the symptoms.
- While it can lower your blood pressure, hot showers that are a little too hot or when taken in very humid conditions can raise your blood pressure, making people with cardiovascular conditions feel worse.
Does Body Temperature Rise After a Hot Bath?
Soaking in the hot water of your bathtub can also raise your internal temperature even higher and more quickly than a hot shower.
While hot showers can warm up your body to a degree, a hot bath in which hot water covers your whole body can raise your core temperature by a significant amount.
Taking a hot shower can bring your body temperature up. This means that checking your temperature just after coming out of a hot, steamy shower could register a high temperature, although it’s not very accurate.
Ideally, you should wait for at least one hour or so after taking a hot shower before taking your temperature for an accurate reading.
It depends. Some people find it beneficial to take a warm shower when they have a fever. The steam could be relaxing and soothing. But an extremely hot shower taken when you have a fever might make you dizzy and unsteady, so it’s not recommended.
If you want to take a shower when you have a fever, it’s best to make sure the water is lukewarm instead of hot. And to be safe, you can sit on a shower bench or chair while showering instead of standing.
Be Mindful When Taking a Hot Shower
Like anything that is hot when it comes in contact with your skin, hot water from the shower can make your skin and hair hotter. In fact, taking hot showers can raise your core temperature, which comes with both pros and cons.
For instance, as much as hot showers can lower your blood pressure and improve your circulation, using water that’s too hot can raise your blood pressure. The bottom line is, taking hot showers can have its benefits, but you need to keep an eye on the temperature when taking them.