FAIR LAWN, N.J. — Everything about the healing Himalayan salt room at Salt Breeze in Fair Lawn is designed to soothe.
The floor is a bed of pink salts. The walls are lined with salts that radiate a rotating rainbow spectrum of colored light.
Then there’s the halo generator.
“The main benefit comes from the generator pumping salt powder into the air,” explained Salt Breeze founder Oksana Sheremeta of Saddle Brook.
Before she opened the business in April, Sheremeta was a surgery nurse at Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck.
Salt Breeze is a perfect meshing of her medical and cultural backgrounds.
“You can treat a lot of things with traditional medicine,” said Sheremeta, 35. “Yet there are moments when you can supplement that treatment with something green, organic, alternative.”
The notion that salt caves – or rooms designed to recreate the microclimate of caves — is more than 150 years old.
The field of halotherapy was born in the mid-19th century when Felix Boczkowski, a Polish doctor, noticed that salt miners aged well. They looked younger, had healthier skin, and got sick less often than other miners.
Sheremeta knows about salt therapy from her native Ukraine, where the first underground hospital for those with respiratory ailments was opened in Solotvyno .
Also, the first halo generator was created in Odessa, Sheremeta said.
The salt rooms at Salt Breeze help people with asthma, rhinitis, sinus headaches, seasonal allergies, and other respiratory conditions. It also aids people with chronic conditions, such as COPD or asthma, but not when they’re in respiratory distress.
“You need to be able to breathe normally to get the benefit,” Sheremeta said. “The salt in the air works as a bronchial brush.”
Treatments also are known to be good for skin conditions because the salt in the air kills bacteria on the skin and helps slough off dead cells, which benefits people with psoriasis and eczema.
Even people without respiratory and skin ailments benefit from the de-stressing powers of authentic Himalayan salts, which come from a mine in the Punjab region of Pakistan. That’s because Himalayan salts ionize the air, making it cleaner.
“Compare it to a sea breeze,” Sheremeta said. “It’s the same effect.”
Indeed that’s how Salt Breeze got its name.
The center also has a playground salt room for children, with heated salts on the floor.
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