Treatments & Therapies

Climatotherapy – Treatment, Effect & Risks


Holidays in the mountains or on the coast not only offer relaxation from stressful everyday life. In the case of certain diseases, a stay in the context of climatotherapy can even have healing properties. However, the prerequisite is that the holidays on site last at least three weeks.

What is climatotherapy?

Climatotherapy is a healing process in which those affected spend a certain amount of time in regions with specific climatic conditions. Sea, Alps or mountains are particularly suitable here. The time should be spent mainly in nature and less in big cities to use the medicinal effect. Climatotherapy is used particularly frequently for diseases that affect the skin and respiratory tract .

Studies have shown that the positive results are not short-lived, but are still noticeable after the holiday. In this way, specific diseases can be alleviated without chemical aids. A disadvantage, however, are the costs, which are usually not covered by health insurance companies, but must be paid in full. Which regions are suitable depends primarily on the individual complaints. A distinction is made between maritime climate, low mountain range climate and high mountain range climate. The low mountain range climate begins at an altitude of 500 to 1200 meters, the high mountain climate includes further altitudes.

Function, effect & goals

The aim of climatotherapy is to relieve skin and respiratory ailments naturally. The treatment is therefore part of a naturopathic approach . However, the positive effects have been scientifically confirmed. The starting point of climate therapy is a climate change that is taking place. The body has to adapt to the new conditions such as wind, sun and wind, which, among other things, can also effectively strengthen the immune system . In the context of climate therapy, further differentiation is made.

The aim of the terrain cure is to combine physical activity with climatic stimuli. With heliotherapy, on the other hand, diseased sections of skin can be exposed to the sun. Cooler temperatures are used during the fresh air lying therapy. At the same time, patients lie down during treatment. Climatotherapy is suitable for a wide variety of complaints.

It is often used for allergies . In such a case, the selected region should be in the high mountains if possible. Here, people with neurodermatitis , asthma or an oversensitivity to pollen and pollutants can benefit from the air, which is usually far cleaner than in cities.

In particular, house dust mites and their faeces are responsible for the development of neurodermatitis. At high altitudes, however, they cannot survive because of the changed humidity. For such an effect, places with an altitude of over 1500 meters should be visited. Furthermore, mold is not usually found in such areas . These cause breathing difficulties , especially in humanswho suffer from asthma. The trip to the high mountains reduces existing breathing difficulties. In most cases, the dosage of drugs can be reduced during climatotherapy. Attacks due to hay fever are less likely to occur in high areas. On the one hand, the amount of circulating pollen is significantly lower, on the other hand, the flowering phase is shorter.

In the case of skin diseases , vacation spots in which there is direct sunlight are suitable. This can be used in psoriasis , for example , because it inhibits the inflammatory processes in the cells . It is important that the sun penetrates the skin without sunscreen . However , sunburn should be avoided at all costs. How long the sun’s rays can be enjoyed depends primarily on the individual skin type.

Another useful climate zone is the sea. Here, the rough wind and the salt water in particular have a positive effect on health. The sea climate helps to reduce swelling of the mucous membranes and the salt water in the air can loosen stuck mucus. This liquefies and penetrates more easily to the outside. At the same time, the droplets are suitable for psoriasis. The salt content has an anti-inflammatory effect. In the low mountain range, the organism is relieved by the prevailing climate, because the numerous trees largely limit the effects of heat and UV rays. Climatotherapy is therefore used for various complaints. It can sustainably improve health without chemical drugs and side effects.

Risks, side effects & dangers

Undesirable side effects are not to be expected due to climate therapy. The main disadvantage is the costs, which can be higher for a longer stay. Furthermore, the vacation should be at least three weeks long. Such a time is not always easy to achieve, especially in everyday working life, or it goes hand in hand with the fact that the days off have to be saved in other places, which in turn can result in more stress. Otherwise, when used correctly, the advantages usually outweigh the disadvantages. If you are drawn to the sea for health reasons or to the mountains with direct sunlight, you should take care of your skin.

Every sunburn not only increases the risk of skin cancer , it can also worsen the symptoms of existing skin problems. Accordingly, the beneficial sun should not be enjoyed throughout the day. From a certain point in time, protective clothing and well-tolerated sunscreen are recommended. Although three weeks go by quickly, they can have a lasting impact on your health. The positive effects can usually be seen after a few weeks or even months.

Lisa Newlon
 | Website

Hello! I am Lisa Newlon, and I am a medical writer and researcher with over 10 years of experience in the healthcare industry. I have a Master’s degree in Medicine, and my deep understanding of medical terminology, practices, and procedures has made me a trusted source of information in the medical world.