Steam Rules

Please ensure that you are familiar with the following conditions before entering the sauna and steam room facilities:

Be aware that:

  • A steam room operates at a temperature of 40-50°C at 80-100% humidity. Ensure this is comfortable for you.
  • The steam room controls should only be adjusted by an authorised person.
  • Jewellery, watches etc. should be removed before using the steam room.

The potential hazards are:

  • Adverse reaction to heat or rapid temperature change, resulting in giddiness, fainting or unconsciousness.
  • Scalding from direct contact with steam from the steam pipe.
  • Slipping injuries caused by wet flooring.

You should not use the steam room if you:

  • Have a serious illness, or have a heart condition, high or low blood pressure, or respiratory condition or any other medical condition which may affect your reaction to heat. Consult your doctor first.
  • Are taking medication for any of the above conditions or of which you are unsure as to the advisability of using steam rooms. Consult your doctor first.
  • Have a contagious disease, infectious skin condition, open sores or wounds.
  • Have an illness causing an inability to perspire.
  • Have had a heavy meal within one and a half hours.
  • Are under the influence of drink or drugs.
  • Have recently exercised. Time should be allowed to enable body temperature to return to normal levels.

How to use the steam room safely:

  • Undress and place belongings in a locker or other secure place.
  • Remove any metal in the form of watches and jewellery as they can become very hot in the steam room.
  • It is advisable to remove contact lenses for they can become uncomfortable.
  • Have a thorough warm shower to cleanse your skin and remove all traces of soap, perfumes etc.
  • Enter the steam room and sit down.
  • Relax for six to twelve minutes in the steam or less if it is not comfortable. This will raise the body temperature and the perspiration will clean the pores of the skin.
  • A steam bath is not an endurance test, when you feel uncomfortable leave the steam room and cool down either gradually or immediately by taking a cold shower or use the plunge pool if provided.
  • Return to the steam room for a further five to ten minutes.
  • The hot/cold cycle can be repeated as often as comfort allows.
    For most, two exposures are sufficient as the real benefits of relaxation and stress reduction only occur at the next stage.
    Too long a steam bath exposure may result in nausea, dizziness or fainting.
  • When you are ready to complete the steam session, leave the steam room, cool down and you may wish to take a final cold shower or plunge.
  • Sit or ideally lie down under a towel and relax for fifteen to twenty minutes, or until the body temperature has returned to near normal before taking a final warm shower and dressing.
  • During the steam session, drink plenty of fluids to replace those lost during perspiration but avoid alcohol.
  • If at any time in the steam room any feelings of illness are experienced, leave the steam room immediately and consult with staff or seek medical advice if necessary.

Are you in one of these groups?

Children: No one under the age of 16 years is allowed in the steam room.

The Elderly: May gain great benefit from the use of a steam room but should exercise caution due to the stresses on the heart and circulatory system.

Pregnant Women: The steam room should be avoided throughout pregnancy since the raising of the internal core body temperature could result in ill effects.

Diabetics: People with diabetes may need to check with their doctor before steam bathing.

Where a person with diabetes can use a steam room, they should note that:

  • Diabetics with damaged feet or peripheral neuropathy should exercise caution when in close proximity to the steam vent.
  • Taking a heat treatment directly after activity may cause dehydration. It is therefore best to wait at least 20 minutes and to drink plenty of water.
  • Therapies such as steam bath treatments directly affect insulin sensitivity. Thus, people with diabetes who inject insulin may find that it is absorbed more quickly than normal and this may lead to hypoglycaemia – not enough glucose in the blood.

If people with diabetes are aware of this risk and take precautions they may use steam rooms safely.