How Long Should I Soak in a Hot Tub? Spa Safety Tips
November 15, 2015
Whether it’s an in-ground pool, above ground pool or hot tub, there are always safety guidelines that should be followed to allow for a safe, enjoyable pool or spa experience. This article will answer three main questions that people have regarding how to soak in a hot tub safely. The first section of the article will touch on how long you should stay in hot tub. The second section will discuss children and hot tubs. Lastly, the correct temperature for hot tubs will be discussed.
1. Hot Tub Time Limits
While hot tubs promote relaxation, there are dangers to staying in too long – including dehydration. Most agree that hot tub soaks should last no more than 30 minutes. Assuming the temperature is between 102° and 104°, five to 30 minutes is the optimal amount of time. If at any point you feel dizzy or overheated, remove yourself from the hot tub.
2. Children and Hot Tubs
As a general rule of thumb, no child should be allowed in a hot tub unless they can stand on the bottom and have their head remain completely out of the water. However, children who are big enough to be in a hot tub should not use it for more than five minutes per session. Dropping the spa temperature to below 104°, to the 98° range, would allow for longer soaks for kids. It is still not recommend that children stay in longer than 15 minutes. It is also recommended that young children avoid full body submersion; instead, have them sit on higher seats that permit waist-high immersion.
3. Spa Temperatures
The official recommendation for hot tub temperature is 104° degrees. Temperatures above 104° are believed to cause health complications, as the hot water raises body temperature to levels higher than the body is accustomed to or can tolerate. Most hot tub manufacturers have installed controls that do not allow the temperature to go above 104°. For most casual hot tub owners and users, the temperature usually falls between 102° and 104°. Also, keep a floating thermometer on hand even if your hot tub has a digital thermometer built in.
A few more tips:
- Hot water amplifies the effects of alcohol and certain drugs, and the result can be dangerous. This is why public spas prohibit the use of alcohol during hot tub use.
- If you take prescription drugs, consult your doctor before using a hot tub.
- Pregnant women should not enter a hot tub or spa without first consulting with their physician and following the doctor’s advice.