If you have never experienced a Himalayan salt lamp, or visited a salt cave, you may be at a loss as to what all the hype is about … and you are not alone!
How can a simple, warm-toned lamp have such an impact on both physical and mental wellness? Read on to find out …
What you need to know … the lowdown
Genuine Himalayan salt lamps are solid blocks of real Himalayan salt that have been sourced from deep underground mines in Khewra, Pakistan. The pink or orange hued blocks are believed to be composed of dried remnants of the original, primal sea dating back to Earth’s creation, and they are hollowed out in the centre to make way for a light bulb that emits both light and heat.
It should be noted that, in humid climates or between heating and cooling, genuine salt lamps tend to weep, so it is a good idea to protect surfaces beneath them with a saucer.
When you introduce Himalayan salt lamps into your home or work environment, it is important to use them for a least a week before assessing any changes. Don’t give up if the improvements are not noticeable immediately.
A simple, scientific explanation
Healthy molecules in our air consist of an equal balance of positively, negatively and neutrally charged particles. However, there are a number of reasons why this balance can be disturbed, and when a negatively charged particle becomes dislodged, the molecule becomes positively charged – making it bad for our health.
Himalayan salt lamps address this imbalance by drawing in positive ions from their environment, and emitting negative ions to counteract the imbalance.
At the same time, Himalayan salt lamps draw in dust, mould, mildew and other pollutants from the air, by attracting and absorbing water molecules, which contain the contaminants. As the warmth of the lamp increases, the same molecules evaporate back into the air, leaving the undesirable particles trapped within the salt.
How they support health
Himalayan salt lamps are extremely effective in:
- Cleaning and deodourising air – One of the most popular reasons people purchase these lamps if for air purification. As explained above, the ability to remove dust, mould, mildew and other contaminants make these lamps particularly effective in reducing symptoms for people who experience asthma, allergies and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. The success of Himalayan salt in reducing these symptoms is so effective that it is even used in asthma inhalers.
- Reducing impact of electronics in the home - In today’s world, many of our homes are filled with positively charged ions and high levels of electromagnetic radiation as a result of the numerous electronics we own and operate. As we now know, high levels of positive ions are not good for our overall health – they sap energy and contribute to the reduced performance of our body’s natural filtering processes. Furthermore, electromagnetic radiation is a known contributor to increased stress levels, chronic fatigue and decreased immune responses, among other things. Through the emission of negative ions, Himalayan salt lamps work to neutralise electromagnetic radiation by cancelling out the percentage of positive ions within the home.
By placing a salt lamp close to the electronics you use most, you can reduce the potential danger to you and your family.
- Reducing coughing - High levels of positive ions contribute to the reduced performance of the microscopic hairs in our trachea in filtering air entering our lungs. However, through the expelling of negative ions, Himalayan salt lamps assist your body to efficiently filter the air we breathe, and keep our lungs clear.
- Improving sleep and moods - Over-exposure to positive ions can also have a significant impact on the quality of our sleep, as they reduce the blood and oxygen supply to the brain, causing irregular sleep patterns. By using a Himalayan pink salt lamp in our bedroom to generate more negative ions, we can improve both the air quality and our sleep. This improved blood and oxygen supply to the brain and organs will also contribute to feeling happier and more alert. Negative ions also have a powerful effect on serotonin levels upon entering the bloodstream, making them a powerful antidote for depression, stress and anxiety.
It’s best to sleep in a dark room so try using the lamp during the remainder of the day, and turn it off just before your sleep.
- Increased energy levels – There are many activities we enjoy in life that we find energising, due to the fact that they increase our exposure to negative ions. Experiences including a country picnic, a day at the beach or even an early morning shower remove us from polluted and negatively charged air and leave us feeling refreshed. Himalayan salt lamps in the home provide us with an opportunity to gain the same “fresh” feeling via the exposure to negative ions.
- Reduced Seasonal Affective Disorder - The soft, natural light emitted by Himalayan pink salt lamps is similar to the warm glow of the sun, making these beauties a source in the relief of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Set your lamp on a timer to extend your exposure to this comforting and nourishing warmth.
- Finally, as a fun fact … Himalayan salt lamps can reduce static electricity! While this won’t boost your health, it can reduce nasty zaps, flyaway hair, and clingy clothing by neutralising the airborne particles that cause them.
Positioning your lamp
When purchasing a Himalayan salt lamp, ensure you buy the quantity of salt for the room area. As a general rule, 450g of Himalayan salt will cleanse the air in approximately a 1.2m x 1.2m area.
If you can’t find a large enough lamp for your room, remember that you can use multiple lamps spread through the space for the same effect.