SAUNA AIR QUALITY
Everyone knows that saunas have to be heated up properly. Opinions vary on whether you need 140 or 200°Fahrenheit (60 or 100°C) for a delightful sauna experience, but this is something in which it is easy not to solely rely on your instincts. Measurement of the sauna temperature is a normal practice and you can’t go very wrong with it. But it may come as a surprise that the temperature is only half of the story when it comes to how you feel inside the sauna.
Air quality is invisible and usually becomes tangible only after a few minutes of exposure but is also critical to the sauna experience. If it’s not right, sauna bathers experience something a Finn would describe as “lack of oxygen”. That’s not quite correct, but a good metaphor for the feeling of being short of breath without any obvious reason, particularly at moderate temperatures.
Air quality is the most mysterious of the sauna experience elements. We believe air quality is affected by multiple factors. These include air temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide level, oxygen level, and possibly few others. These others may include ions, gases evaporating from sauna stones, treated or brand-new wooden surfaces, and those resulting from bacteria living on unclean surfaces and materials. The bacteria result in a bad smell, immediately recognizable upon entry – a definitive sign of a bad sauna!