Can Kids Go In A Sauna? (Quick Answer!)

By KidSpaceStuff •  Updated: 02/15/24 •  7 min read

Saunas have long been celebrated for their health benefits and relaxation potential, but the question often arises – can kids also partake in this warming ritual? The notion of children in a sauna might make some parents shudder, with concerns about safety and health issues. 

In this article, we’re diving headfirst into the heart of this question. We will explore the benefits, potential risks, and crucial safety measures to consider when deciding whether a sauna is suitable for your little ones.

Now, Can Kids Go In A Sauna?

Yes, but kids who have not gone through puberty (typically 12 and under) should be supervised and only allowed to be in the sauna for 10-15 minutes at a time.

Saunas are considered safe for children and can benefit their physical and mental health. It is advised to allow children to use these types of saunas from the age of 8, as kids younger than this may struggle to regulate heat and quickly dehydrate. For children’s sauna sessions in infrared saunas, it is recommended to start with a temperature of 110 degrees and enter at 98 degrees, limiting the session to 10 minutes.

Understanding Saunas: A Brief Overview

A sauna is a room or a small house designed for people to experience heat sessions, which can make them sweat due to the high temperatures. The primary purpose of a sauna is to promote relaxation and well-being, but it also has potential health benefits.

There are two main types of saunas: traditional and infrared. Traditional saunas, often called Finnish saunas, generate heat by warming the air in the room. This can be achieved by heating a pile of rocks, typically with an electric heater or a wood-burning stove. Once the stones are heated, you can throw water on them to produce steam, which increases the humidity and perceived temperature in the room.

On the other hand, infrared saunas use infrared light to heat the body directly without significantly warming the air around you. This means you experience a more profound, penetrating heat at a lower temperature than traditional saunas. Remember, though, it’s essential to stay hydrated during and after a sauna session because of the fluid lost through sweating.

The Health Implications of Saunas for Children

Kids can both be hurt and enjoy themselves in saunas.

Under care, young people can improve their physical and mental health by going to the sauna every day. It makes their immune system stronger, so they are less likely to get colds and other illnesses. Like adults, it helps kids unwind and deal with worry.

Know the risks as well. Children under the age of eight may sweat and lose water because they can’t control their body temperature well. Because the sauna is so hot, they sweat and lose salts and water that their bodies need.

So, it’s important to keep an eye on kids in the sauna and make sure they drink a lot of water and don’t stay too long. Kids should have shorter and cooler bath sessions than adults. Toddlers and babies shouldn’t take baths.

Lastly, take a sick child to the doctor before letting them use a sauna. This makes sure that the child is safe and has fun.

Don’t know the health benefits of saunas? Check out the video down below!

Age Based Guidelines: When Can Kids Start Using Saunas

Saunas have been used for relaxation and health benefits for centuries. They help in sweating out toxins, relieving stress, and promoting good sleep. However, when it comes to kids, it’s essential to know when it’s safe for them to start using a sauna because of their different physiology and heat tolerance.

  1. Babies and Toddlers (0-3 years old): Saunas are generally not recommended for babies or toddlers. Their bodies cannot regulate body temperature as effectively as older children or adults. This makes them more prone to overheating and dehydration.
  2. Preschoolers (4-5 years old): Some experts suggest it’s okay to start introducing saunas at this age, but the time spent should be minimal (around 5 minutes). The temperature should be kept lower than what adults would typically endure. An adult should always accompany the child.
  3. School Age (6-12 years old): Children may be able to handle slightly longer sessions (10-15 minutes), but the temperature should remain lower than in an adult’s sauna. They should always be supervised, and it’s essential to ensure they stay hydrated.
  4. Teenagers (13-17 years old): Teenagers may start to use the sauna similarly to adults, but they should be educated on the signs of overheating and dehydration. Short sessions (15-20 minutes) should be encouraged first, gradually increasing as they become accustomed to the heat. Hydration is vital before, during, and after the sauna session.
  5. Adults (18 years and older): Most people can safely enjoy saunas by this age. They should monitor how they feel in the heat, keep sessions to a reasonable length, and hydrate well.

Tips for Introducing Your Kid to Sauna

Saunas can offer several health benefits, like improved circulation, stress relief, and better sleep. But when it comes to kids, it’s essential to introduce them to the sauna experience safely and gradually. Here are some tips to help you do just that.

Tip #1: Start with a Doctor’s Consultation 

Getting the green light from a pediatrician before introducing your child to a sauna is essential. They can give you guidelines based on your child’s health, age, and tolerance to heat.

Tip #2: Begin with Short Sessions 

Start with sessions as short as 5 minutes, and gradually increase the time as your child gets used to the heat. Even for older children, sauna sessions should be at most 15-20 minutes.

Tip #3: Keep the Temperature Lower 

For kids, the sauna temperature should be lower than what is comfortable for an adult. A good starting point is around 60 degrees Celsius (140 degrees Fahrenheit), but you can adjust this based on your child’s comfort.

Tip #4: Ensure Hydration 

Before, during, and after the sauna session, ensure your child drinks plenty of fluids to replace what’s lost through sweating.

Tip #5: Always Supervise 

Never leave your child unattended in a sauna. Not only can they overheat or dehydrate, but they can also slip on the wet floors or get too close to the heat source.

Tip #6: Teach Sauna Etiquette 

Make sure your child understands the basics of sauna safety – like not touching the hot stones, sitting on a towel, and exiting the sauna if they feel uncomfortable.

Tip #7: Watch for Signs of Overheating 

If your child starts to feel dizzy, nauseous, or very hot, get them out of the sauna right away. These could be signs of overheating, which can be dangerous.

Final Thoughts

To conclude, it is recommended that children who have not yet reached puberty, typically aged 12 and below, be under supervision and limited to sauna sessions.

The safety and appropriateness of children using saunas depend on various factors, such as their age, health, and how well they can handle the heat. Even though baths might help people relax and sleep better, it’s important to remember that children’s bodies are different from those of adults. They lose fluids and grow excessively hot due to their heat sensitivity and inability to regulate their body temperature.

If you are considering taking your child to a sauna, you should always talk to a doctor or nurse first. They can give you help based on what your child needs and how healthy they are. When starting, sauna sessions should be short, the temperature should be low, and the child should always be watched. It’s essential to drink water before, during, and after the sauna, and it’s important to teach your child about sauna safety.