Himalayan salt caves have been gaining popularity in the U.S. over the last few years due to claims that the mineral has healing properties. These salt therapy spas invite people to come and relax in a room that's entirely made of Himalayan salt.
We checked out Saltana Cave in Ridgefield, Connecticut where owner Anna Pogoda welcomes clients of all ages. "Salt therapy is not only for people who have health problems. It's a wonderful relaxation facility for everyone," she said.
Salt particles are antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and antiviral.
"When you enter Saltana Cave you walk on salt crystals, you feel the salt, you smell it, you taste it, you touch it."
She says the salt therapy sessions are particularly helpful for people with chronic lung conditions such as asthma and COPD. Her clients report breathing easier after experiencing a 45-minute salt cave session.
This is what's it's like to be surrounded by salt. The 360 experience.
"Also there's a generator that starts pumping additional salt particles into the room. So the air is filled with wonderful nutrients that are very, very healing," she said.
Pogoda also mentioned that her business picks up during allergy season. "People with allergies experience opening of their nasal passages and that really clears and dries out the mucus, the inflammation related to the allergies they experience." Other conditions like psoriasis and eczema can be improved after spending time in a salt cave.
The health related benefits are wonderful, but clients also report using the salt sessions as a time to unwind and unplug from everyday life. Many just come simply to meditate and get away from life stresses.
Clients lay in zero gravity chairs, listen to soothing music and meditate.
Everything in the cave is made of Himalayan salt. Even the fire place.
Over 12,000 pounds of Himalayan salt was imported from Pakistan.
"Salt therapy was discovered by one of the doctors in Poland in the 1850's. He did research on salt and salt miners who have never developed any lung problems and discovered all these wonderful properties of salt. Since then there have been many man-made facilities created to enhance the relaxation, meditation and well being for people who attend," Pogoda added.
Pogoda immigrated from Poland and decided to open a salt cave of her own in the U.S. after her daughter experienced major relief from her chronic asthma symptoms.
Saltana also offers a yoga glass inside the cave.
A 45 minute session costs $40 dollars.