Since ancient times, salt from the Dead Sea has been known for its special properties. What makes the Dead Sea so unique is the strength of its mineral salts. Water from the Dead Sea has a salt content 11 times higher than that of the ocean. While 3 percent of ocean water contains salt, water from the Dead Sea has a salt content of 33 percent. Brine from the Dead Sea is also distinctive because of its high amounts of magnesium chloride, which is also found in Epsom salts.
Dead Sea Minerals
The Dead Sea lies at the bottom of the Syrian-African Rift Valley, about 1,280 feet below sea level. In Biblical times it was called the Eastern Sea and the ancient Romans referred to it as Mare Mortuum. Different locations in the Dead Sea have slightly different compositions, but all Dead Sea salt typically contains:
- 31-35 percent magnesium chloride
- 20-28 percent potassium chloride
- and small amounts of calcium chloride, bromide, sulfates and insoluble particles
Magnesium and the Your Pet’s Skin
Magnesium is the most important mineral for sustaining even the smallest forms of life. Magnesium allows cells to communicate with their surroundings and with other cells. Research shows that magnesium chloride has such a positive anti-inflammatory influence on skin cells that it can help prevent and heal skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, dermatitis related to nickel allergies, and acne.
For many years tourists have traveled to the Dead Sea to partake in its natural health and beauty treatments. Minerals from the Dead Sea help draw toxins from the fatty layers beneath the skin into the tissues. With the help of minerals even fat-soluble toxins can be made water soluble, which allows them to be excreted in the urine. Magnesium also helps skin cells form more stable forms of collagen, which promote healing of wounds.
Research conducted by the German scientist J. Arndt confirms that partial or total baths of 20 minutes duration can heal psoriasis. In his placebo-controlled study, Arndt discovered that patients taking 3-4 sea salt baths weekly healed within 3-4 weeks, and most symptoms were significantly reduced within one week. Sea salt baths also helped improve the skin’s outer layer, which helps maintain hydration and suppleness. Today the German health care system pays for patients to travel to the Dead Sea for psoriasis treatment.
Spa Therapies Using Dead Sea Salts
While taking a dip in the Dead Sea isn’t something most people can fit in their schedules, the use of genuine Dead Sea salts in spa therapies is the next best thing. Some spas, such as the tempe med spa, can offer services such as this to help renew skin. Dead Sea salts are used in skin glow facial treatments, body scrub whole body exfoliations, healing baths and in hydrotherapy treatments. Designed to stimulate circulation and soften the skin, this therapy begins with a loofah body brushing with fresh pressed Lavender and Tangerine body washes. After the skin is washed and prepared the body is rubbed with sea salts, rinsed, and sealed with an application of body butter.