At a minimum concentration of 3% and a maximum therapeutic concentration of 5%, ozone is created by an ozone generator and pumped into the sauna or tent chamber. The sauna or tent is designed to encapsulate the body while leaving the head open in ambient air. This prevents individuals from breathing ozone at a high concentration, which should be avoided.
Ozone degrades rapidly, and the tent or sauna serves both to allow the concentration in the sauna to build up quickly to a therapeutic level, while at the same time preventing the ozone from building up in the ambient breathing air. With sauna units, the flow rate of the ozone is not very important, as it is easy to saturate the small space of a sauna chamber with therapeutic levels of ozone.
As long as suitable ventilation is provided in the room, then there is no safety concern. Suitable ventilation means proper air flow circulation. Ambient air in the room should both circulate in the room, and also exit the room/building. Any central air system in a building is suitable, provided that there is also sufficient air flow in the treatment room. Sufficient air flow may be added by using a large circulation fan.
Alternately, an ozone destructor made of carbon may be used, and attached to an ozone steam sauna at the opposite high end of the sauna. One simply cuts (if a venting port is not provided for) the same size hole as the ozone input line, attaching an FDA/USP grade silicon hose to the hole, and then attaching an ozone destructor. Suitable ventilation, however, should always be used. We do not view the ozone destructor as necessary, but perhaps very advisable in situations where there may be multiple ozone machines in use.
Ozone generators that do not produce nitrous oxide must be used. With most generators, pure oxygen or an oxygen concentrator must be used to avoid the production of nitrous oxide, which should be avoided to protect the health of individuals, as nitrous oxide is easily converted to nitric acid in the body, which is exceedingly toxic. There are individuals who have acquired “the bends” (decompression sickness) by using ozone chamber therapy with the wrong generator without using pure oxygen.
Sauna chambers made from ozone resistant materials are recommended. While these units are often expensive, they are worth the cost. Individuals who feel they need the therapy, and who cannot afford an ozone steam cabinet, may elect to utilize an ozone steam sauna tent. While these tents are acceptable, they should be kept clean, and consideration should be given to the fact that the PVC material used for the frame, as well as the nylon used for the tent itself, will slowly degrade.
Researching therapists have experimented with ozone chamber therapy without the added heat and moisture with a measure of success. However, there are many benefits of utilizing both heat and moisture with ozone therapy.
With the ozone pumping into the sauna chamber, a steam generator is used to feed hot steam into the sauna chamber. This produces several effects:
- The body’s pores, due to both the heat and the steam, begin to open, which changes the exchange potential between the ambient gasses and the body.
- The combination between the open pores, the heat, and the ozone begins a detoxification process. Activated oxygen begins to react with substances with the highest oxidation potential, breaking these substances down.
- As the body begins to sweat, the exchange potential is further increased, resulting in increased adsorption of gasses/fluids, and increased excretion of toxic substances from the body ( via the immune system regulated lymphatic response ).
- The ozone begins to breakdown rapidly: O3 —-> O2 + O-. There is little, IF ANY, ozone reaction deeper than the skin. Toxic substances are quickly broken down by ozone, and those which do not react with the ozone can react with the singlet, negatively charged oxygen ion ( O- ). There is no evidence, or reason to expect, that something as instable as ozone actually penetrates through the skin and into the active metabolism of the body.
- As the body sweats, and as ozone breaks down, organic peroxides are created in the oils of the body being excreted from and existing in the skin. A small amount of ozone becomes trapped within these natural oils and newly created peroxides, which provides a sustained/prolonged effect of activated oxygen. This reaction is very similiar to creating ozinated oils.
- Even so, there is still no evidence to suggest that the ozone trapped within the oils actually reaches the bloodstream, or beyond the skin/lymphatic system. More likely, the ozone instantly reacts as it is freed from the oils, creating more organic peroxides and potentially releasing a single negatively charged atom of oxygen. It is these forms of oxygen doing all of the work inside the body.
- Evidence suggests that the body is very capable of utilizing these organic peroxides, as researchers have demonstrated that a byproduct of ozone sauna therapy is increased “fixed” free oxygen in the blood stream. The benefits of a single ozone steam sauna session have been documented to last as long as three weeks. Therefore, the highly reactive O3 molecule is eventually formed into stabilized oxygen molecules by the natural processes of the body.
- The entire lymphatic system is stimulated during therapy
- The skin is deeply cleansed
- If enough heat is used for a long enough time, a hypothermic response occurs in the body, and the body’s internal temperature begins to rise. For the average individual, it takes between 12 and 15 minutes for the body’s internal temperature to begin to rise in the presence of steam.
- For high heat therapy, the internal temperature should be monitored.
Once the therapy session has ended, the pores begin to close, and the body temperature returns to normal very rapidly. The oxygen introduced by the therapy is still very much active, both on the surface of the skin, and in the body. If possible, an individual should wait for 2-3 hours before showering, or until the smell of ozone is no longer present on the skin (this is the ozone being released from the natural body oils).
However, when therapy has ended, a great deal of toxic waste remains trapped in the body. Many of these toxic substances previously existed in isolated and neutral forms, many of which the body was previously not able to eliminate. As an example, bacteria cell walls are compromised, leaving endotoxin, and petrochemicals and pesticides are broken down. All of these substances still need to be removed from the body.
Ozone sauna therapy in no way helps in the actual elimination processes of the body, once the sauna session has ended. Those with chronic illness, immune system conditions, sluggish metabolisms, and other issues associated severe toxicity must learn how to assist the body’s elimination functions in order to avoid oxidative stress, severe rashes and lesions, and other potential toxic shock responses. Ozone sauna therapy can break down substances, but it is up to the body to heal itself, as well as cleanse itself from within.