Bert’s mother Catherine Waldland Abeland had a degree in equestrian subjects, but wasn’t sure if that was what she wanted to do full time. After a trip to Asheville in the USA in 2018, the idea of alternative therapy took hold.
Now, nearly four years later, she and her husband, Sven Upland, 38, are one of four offering salt replacement therapy in Norway. The plan is to start in early January.
I didn’t feel like I had found my way completely in this life. Then we were in Asheville, which is somewhat of a ‘lovable place’. They had a slightly different room type than this, they offered, for example, throat singing and a little more alternative stuff. I still thought it was so cool that I started thinking about starting on my own, says Bert Katherine.
good for health
Salt therapy, also called salt therapy, is a therapeutic method that reproduces the natural microclimate of a real salt mine. This is done by spraying salt particles at a high concentration in a room covered with salt on the floor and walls. In Berit Kathrine’s room, there are three tons of salt spread out on the ceilings, walls, and floors. You heat the salt to about 50 degrees, so that it becomes completely dry, and then the salt particles are crushed and dispersed into the air through what’s called a halogen generator.
– In the nineteenth century, it was observed that people who work in salt mines have better health than those who work on the surface. The treatment involves sitting and breathing in the salt particles coming from the generator. This is documented to have a positive effect on health, because salt has an antibacterial effect, says Catherine Beret.
She explained that improvement was observed in people with asthma, eczema and COPD after starting the salt treatment.
– We have one person for treatment so far and he has COPD. She believes the treatment dissolves the mucus, making her feel better. You can buy saline eye drops and saline nasal spray at the drugstore with something inside. Dead Sea products have always been very popular, because they have a good effect on health, she says.
Three tons of salt in the garage
Berit Kathrine and Svein moved from Sirevåg to Vigrestad a year and a half ago. After moving into Berit Kathrine’s grandparents’ home, they worked tirelessly to put the salt room in the basement.
– We could already have been ready to open a year ago, but because of Corona, it was postponed. We had workers from a company in Estonia who came and set up the room, but when the borders were closed we had to put everything off, as they weren’t allowed into Norway. That’s why three tons of salt stays in the garage for so long, says Catherine Beret.
To make the salt hang on the walls and ceiling, they first sprayed the surfaces with so-called liquid glass, a substance that attracts the salt and causes it to solidify. Then they mixed salt and water, and then physically threw it on the walls and ceiling several times.
Use a ladle to throw out the salt mixture. The salt had to dry for about a day between each round, so this process took about two weeks. There are about four layers of salt on the walls and five layers on the ceiling. Sven says the salt is loose on the ground, like in a sandbox.
Both of them clearly would not have achieved this without the help they received from the family along the way. The antechamber was built by Bert Catherine’s father and uncle, among others.
– We have received a lot of help from the family, both with regard to childcare and everything else, so we are very grateful for that, says Berit Catherine.
Many treatments have the greatest effect
Berit Kathrine explains that it is recommended to have about ten hours in a row twice a year, for the greatest health effect.
It depends on what you suffer from, but it should be enough if you have asthma for example. Then divide the hours evenly one by one as per your convenience. She says that some prefer to come every day for ten days, while others spread it out for a little longer.
Berit Kathrine also says she is keen to say for sure that it will work for everyone.
“We can’t guarantee anything, but based on what we see from other countries and the other three countries that offer salt therapy in Norway, it seems that those who have used this remedy believe it works,” she said.
Svein states that they are in the process of building their website and running it until opening on January 4.
– So far, we have a booking page that we have linked to on our Facebook page. But when the site is ready, you’ll be able to request an appointment and cut the ticket through this, he says.
The plan is to receive as many customers as possible during the day. The room sleeps five people at the same time, all age groups are welcome.
– The room is decorated so that people can relax as much as possible. Beret Catherine says we have good armchairs, pillows to lean on, blankets and soothing music, all to make users feel comfortable when they are here.
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