FAR INFRARED CRYSTAL MAT THERAPY?
Far infrared therapy using a crystal mat, commonly referred to as a "bio mat", might sound like a really woo-woo bit of new-age snake oil. However, amethyst crystal mats actually have their origins firmly-grounded in science. How, you ask? Let's take a quick look at the science.
Infrared radiation is an invisible form of electromagnetic energy, and is categorized into three categories: near (measured in 0.8- 1.5 nanometers, or nm), middle (1.5 - 5.6 nm), and far (5.6 - 1000nm). When it comes to therapeutic usage, it's the far infrared radiation (which occurs in the form of invisible light waves and negative ions and is of the same sort generated by the sun) that is emerging as a beacon of therapeutic promise. Far infrared radiation is sometimes also referred to as "biogenic" radiation.
Far Infrared Radiation (FIR) is a technology that originated at NASA, and is used in devices such as far infrared amethyst crystal mats. Instead of using electric coils (like traditional heated blankets do) to generate heat in order to deliver therapy to the tissues of the body, far infrared technology uses remote computer frequencies to generate infrared light waves and negative ions via vibratory signals, which are then transmitted to the bed of amethyst crystals in the mat. Amethyst is a form of quartz, which acts as a conductor for these signals, and once these signals are transmitted through the amethyst crystals, in addition to beneficial FIR and negative ions, heat is also generated. What is unique about this type of far infrared therapy is twofold: it is done without any of the usual electromagnetic frequencies (EMF) that are normally generated by our modern electronic devices, and it has the ability to penetrate much deeper into the tissues of the body, making it at once more efficient and less invasive as a therapy.
The heat generated by a far infrared crystal mat is not just any old heat. It turns out that infrared radiation is extremely helpful in allowing for a transfer of multiple forms of energy into the subcutaneous tissue of the body - that's the innermost layer of your skin that houses all sorts of blood vessels and nerve endings and plays an important part in regulating things like body temperature, healing, and nerves that govern the pain response. Sure, this effect has also been exhaustively measured and recorded with therapies like deep tissue massage and traditional heat therapies, but with far infrared radiation (FIR), this transfer of energy takes place without the addition of excessive stimulation, or excessive heating or cooling that can injure delicate bodily tissues. FIR therapy also has been scientifically shown to penetrate deeper into the tissues of the body, aided by the amplifying powers of the amethyst quartz crystal, and ultimately providing a much bigger payoff as a therapeutic modality than heat or pressure alone.
Thus far, early studies of the effects of FIR have been shown to help improve both arterial and peripheral blood circulation, alleviating pain and fatigue, and reducing blood pressure. Overall, the aim is to promote expedited healing, and the restoration of the body's homeostatic functions (that's fancy talk for "re-booting your normal operating systems.") FIR has also shown promise in elevating mood, promoting restful sleep, reducing inflammation, and promoting a sense of deep relaxation.
While FIR does not require high temperatures to be effective, the FIR crystal mat uses a few different heat settings for different treatment needs, making the treatment a deeply relaxing experience that requires that you only lie back, relax, and enjoy!
To take advantage of an amethyst crystal bio mat session, you need only to show up. It's really that simple. You can receive your treatment fully-clothed as a stand-alone session, or as an add-on at the end of a massage as a means to totally relax, unplug from the stressors of daily life, and allow your body rest, recover, or heal. Whatever you need.
Still not convinced? Have I blinded you with science? Think of it this way - you will be all wrapped-up snug, lying on a warm bed of glistening amethyst crystals! HOW COOL IS THAT!?
More of the science behind FIR therapy:
Clinical Effects of Regular Dry Sauna Bathing: A Systematic Review
Joy Hussain, Marc Cohen
Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2018; 2018: 1857413. Published online 2018 Apr 24. doi: 10.1155/2018/1857413
Preconditioning with far-infrared irradiation enhances proliferation, cell survival, and migration of rat bone marrow-derived stem cells via CXCR4-ERK pathways
Yun-Mi Jeong, Xian Wu Cheng, Sora Lee, Kyung Hye Lee, Haneul Cho, Jung Hee Kang, Weon Kim
Sci Rep. 2017; 7: 13718. Published online 2017 Oct 20. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-14219-w
Clinical utility of far-infrared therapy for improvement of vascular access blood flow and pain control in hemodialysis patients
Soo Jeong Choi, Eun Hee Cho, Hye Min Jo, Changwook Min, Young Sok Ji, Moo Yong Park, Jin Kuk Kim, Seung Duk Hwang
Kidney Res Clin Pract. 2016 Mar; 35(1): 35–41. Published online 2015 Dec 31. doi: 10.1016/j.krcp.2015.12.001