History of Salt Therapy

Salt Therapy, also known as speleotherapy, derives from the Greek word for cave and loosely translates as cave therapy is used to describe salt therapy treatment provided in naturally occurring salt mines across Europe.  The healing properties of salt have been known for thousands of years and it was regularly used for its medicinal properties by the ancient Greeks.

The first centre for salt therapy was opened in the Wieliczka salt mine in Poland in 1839 by Dr Felix Bochkovski, he later went on to publish the first book about the benefits of salt therapy on the respiratory system in 1843.

In 1989 the first device designed to provide salt therapy was created by crushing particles of salt through a device that would disperse the micro-sized particles into the air in controlled microclimate environment.  This is when ‘Halotherapy’ was first born.  Halotherapy refers to salt therapy treatment that is provided using a halogenerator device as opposed to a salt cave or mine which is known as ‘Speleotherapy’.  Halotherapy is named after the Greek word ‘Halo’ meaning ‘Salt’. 

Benefits of Salt


Pure dry salt, also known as sodium chloride NaCl, has 4 main properties;

  • It is naturally antibacterial

  • It is naturally anti-inflammatory

  • It is a powerful antihistamine

  • It is extremely absorbent

Conditions that may benefit from Salt Therapy








Hay Fever



Cystic Fibrosis

Ear Infection








Salt Therapy and Respiratory Conditions

Anatomy of the Respiratory System

As salt therapy is both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory it may help improve the symptoms of a variety of respiratory conditions by encouraging the body to expel any excess mucus in the airways as well as helping to reduce inflammation in the lungs and upper respiratory system.  It can help to remove the toxicity from the respiratory system helping to improve the overall function of the airways and boosting the immune system.

Salt Therapy and Skin Conditions

Salt therapy can help to improve the overall the quality and appearance of the skin.  The micro-particles of salt have been shown to improve the skin’s protective layer (integument system) by increasing the activity of the skin cells ion channels.  It helps by normalising the skin’s natural pH level and activates the reparative and regenerative processes in the dermis.  As salt is a natural anti-histamine it can also help to reduce the itchiness associated with a number of skin conditions as well as the anti-inflammatory properties of salt helping to reduce redness in the skin.

Anatomy of the Skin

Can Salt Therapy help reduce the need for medication?

Salt Therapy has been known to help patients reduce the need for certain medications however we strongly stress that this is strictly on the advice and guidance of your GP or Specialist Doctor.  

At Inverness Salt Therapy Centre we do not make any advisements on medications and encourage clients to continue any medications or treatments prescribed by their doctor and to only reduce or stop any of these under their advisement. 

For research articles and studies click here.