A child demanded why he must take a bath every morning. I didn't give it much thought as it's an integral part of our daily routine.
When I mulled over it later, I found that on weekdays I've a quick bath to just get it done. But on weekends, my partner has to rant about it continuously for me to shower even if I didn't move a muscle all day.
Myth or Truth Based on some reading, I'm nearly convinced that it's a society myth that we should shower each day (or more often) for good health. I also happened to read a forum where a guy who revealed that he washed only when he felt dirty, sweaty or smelly, from vigorous work or exercise, or extreme hot weather. But no sweat, doesn't mean clean either.
Religion/Culture Habits formed by cultural practices also impact the bathing routines that people follow in different times of a day. In early times, people washed once a week at common pools or bath houses. People's status class also decided who washed first and who washed later.
Imagine if you had to wash after 3 groups of people in the same water used by others before you!
With improvements in architecture and plumbing, people today are blessed with the freedom to shower in the privacy of their home and in fresh water. However, some are still unable to enjoy this luxury due to poverty and lack of infrastructure.
It sounds disgusting to think that there are people out there who don't wash everyday. Have you toyed with this question yourself - why should we wash everyday? Especially if we've not indulged in activities that make us sweat or we don't develop unpleasant body odors. If we're devoid of all things considered externally dirty, then why do people insist that we should bathe at least once a day.
Studies conducted by Oxford & Hygiene Council reveal that of about 495 people tested, nearly half washed their hands less than 5 times a day, which means our hands carry 'as many germs as a toilet bowl.' Yet they didn't think people need to shower daily or as much as we do.
People should take care to wash hands with soap and lukewarm water often. And even if they're unable to wash the whole body, if they're able to use water to wash their body crevices and private areas daily, it is considered beneficial as most germs linger on these areas.
As an additional bonus, people are encouraged to use available resources to take a bath in hot or cold water, as per individual comforts. If people have reservations about using water to wash their hair, they can use dry shampoo to wash their hair and once in a while, use water to rinse the hair carefully with herbal/soft chemical solvents.
Most people focus on maintaining their beauty and want to smell good using perfumes and deodorants. People overlook appropriate bathing practice and moisturising that can bestow the following benefits:
Improve personal hygiene & cleanliness
Relax muscle tension and reduce stress levels
Regulate body temperature
Enjoy the calming influence
Also, it is good to note that frequent showering can have a detrimental impact:
Rubbing and soap use dissolves fat lipids that holds skin's outer layer cells
Washing often gives skin less time to rectify this damage
Cracked/dry irritated skin and rashes
Rubbing dry with a towel also damages skin (air drying/pat drying is advised)
Frequent washing may not suit everyone's skin type (oily/dry/normal)
So, with the onset of winter, just focus on enjoying the hot steamy bath with your favorite settings - your own spa or jacuzzi, aromatic candles, bath salts, mood-based lighting, and a glass of your favorite bubbly.
Instead of a quick hot bath, make this a ritual at the end of the day to relax yourselves completely!