Smoking is the primary cause of Emphysema which is generally considered under the umbrella of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). When someone has this disease, it gradually damages the air sacs or alveoli in the lungs. You may have the disease for many years before you develop symptoms. Once the air sacs rupture, and deflate then a person can have trouble breathing. There isn’t any way to cure Emphysema once you have it, or reverse the damage but you can find treatments that help alleviate the symptoms. This disease is characterized by increasing breathlessness. -
Halotherapy or salt therapy is said to help to open up the damaged air passages allowing the person with damage caused by smoking to be able to breath a little easier. It’s a possible option to consider whether your symptoms are severe or just the first stages of the disease. If you have Emphysema and are still smoking, the absolute best thing you can do for your health is to quit smoking. Develop a plan of attack on quitting smoking whether it involves the patch, nicotine gum, therapy, or a smoking cessation program.
In general, salt cleanses the respiratory system and speeds up the elimination of toxins. Salt has the following properties:
Loosens excessive mucus and speeds up mucociliary transport
Removes pathogens (ie., airborne pollen)
Reduces IgE level (immune system oversensitivity)
Halotherapy or Salt Therapy for
the relief of Smoking Damage to Lungs
Introduction: Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is characterized by progressive airflow limitation associated dyspnea and impaired quality of life. Halo therapy has been suggested to relieve respiratory discomfort in patients with COPD.
Aim: The aim of this study was to study the effect of halo therapy and isotonic saline inhalation, compared to controls, in COPD patients.
Material and methods: In this pilot cohort study 67 patients with COPD, GOLD stage 3 and 4, were included. Patients were assigned to 3 different groups; group 1 receiving 20 sessions of 45 minutes halo therapy with dry aerosols of salt less than 5 μm over 5 weeks, group 2 inhaling 5 ml isotonic Saline over 5 minutes, 5 weeks, 3 times per day and group 3 as controls. Spirometry, 6 minute walking test, dyspnea-score (MRC) and Quality-of-life (SGRQ) score was investigated at inclusion and at termination of the study.
Results: Group 1 improved walking distance 75 meters (p<0.01), SGRQ -6.66 points (p<0.05) and FEV1 0.4liters (2%), (p>0.05), during the treatment period. Group 2 improved FEV1 0.7 litres (3%) (p<0.05) and walkingdistance 90 metres (p<0.01). There was a drop out of 28% (7/25) in this group due to discomfort. Group 3 reduced MRC 1 point (p<0.05) and FEV1 0.6 litres (2%) (p = 0.051) during the observation period.
Conclusion: Both Halo therapy and saline inhalation improved walking distance and FEV1 in patients. SGRQ improved in patients treated with halo therapy. Halo therapy appeared to be better tolerated than saline therapy.
Scientific Research on Halotherapy as a treatment for Smoking Damage to Lungs
Researchers Krueger and Smith discovered that cigarette smoke slows down the cilia and impairs ability to clear foreign and possibly carcinogenic substances from the lungs. Negative ions counteracted the effects of the smoke. According to Dr. Krueger: "The agent in cigarette smoke that slows down the ciliary beat is not known. Whatever it may be, its action is effectively neutralized by negative ions which raise the ciliary beat, as well in a heavy atmosphere of cigarette smoke as they do in fresh air:"
Vopr Kurortol Fizioter Lech Fiz Kult. 1997 Jul-Aug;(4):19-21.
The use of an artificial microclimate chamber in the treatment of patients with chronic obstructive lung diseases.
Voen Med Zh. 1999 Jun;320(6):34-7, 96.
Halotherapy in the combined treatment of chronic bronchitis patients.
J Aerosol Med. 1995 Fall;8(3):221-32.
Halotherapy for treatment of respiratory diseases.
Effectiveness of Halotherapy of chronic bronchitis patients.
Klin Med (Mosk). 2000;78(12):37-40.
Effects of Halotherapy on free radical oxidation in patients with chronic bronchitis.
Effect of dry sodium chloride aerosol on the respiratory tract of tobacco smokers. A.V. Chervinskaya (St. Petersburg, Russian Federation)
The aim was to study the influence of dry sodium chloride aerosol (DSCA) on the respiratory tract of tobacco smokers. 47 males were examined. They had the productive cough associated with smoking. The results showed 88% of the test group by the end of the inhalation course reported easier and/or decreased cough, changes in the character of sputum, which became lighter and clearer. This compared to 22% of the control group who did not receive the halotherapy. The conclusion noted there was improved local defense mechanisms and resistance of mucous membranes of tobacco smokers owing to decreased colonization activity of pathogenic microgerm.
The full report can be found at Eur Respir J 2006; 28: Suppl. 50, 106s
In 2011 The Salt Cave Company of the United KIngdom was invited by the National Health Service to participate in a pilot project, as part of the Personal Health Budget program, to provide therapy for a COPD sufferer, called Clara Buffong. The NHS paid for her treatment and they monitored her for over a year.
Clara Buffong, who took part in the project and explains:
“The Salt Cave changed my life. Before I visited the Salt Cave I was on lots of antibiotics and steroids, none of which made me feel much better. I was basically confined to my house, and hated to be around people as my breathing was so noisy. However, this has now changed thanks to salt therapy. I know I will never get completely better, but the Salt Cave lets me live again and manage my illness in a way that I can enjoy my life again. When I walk out of the Salt Cave I feel high on life. I call it my heaven on earth. If salt therapy can work for me it can work for anybody, so I urge all COPD sufferers to give it a go”