Effects of room temperature on physiological and subjective responses during whole-body bathing, half-body bathing and showering

Nobuko Hashiguchi, Furong Ni, Yutaka Tochihara

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16 Citations (Scopus)


The effects of bathroom thermal conditions on physiological and subjective responses were evaluated before, during, and after whole-body bath (W-bath), half-body bath (H-bath) and showering. The air temperature of the dressing room and bathroom was controlled at 10°C, 17.5°C, and 25°C. Eight healthy males bathed for 10 min under nine conditions on separate days. The water temperature of the bathtub and shower was controlled at 40°C and 41°C, respectively. Rectal temperature (Tre), mean skin temperature (T̄sk), blood pressure (BP), heart rate (HR), body weight loss and blood characteristics (hematocrit: Hct, hemoglobin: Hb) were evaluated. Also, thermal sensation (TS), thermal comfort (TC) and thermal acceptability (TA) were recorded. BP decreased rapidly during W-bath and H-bath compared to showering. HR during W-bath was significantly higher than for H-bath and showering (p<0.01). The double products due to W-bath during bathing were also greater than for H-bath and showering (p<0.05). There were no distinct differences in Hct and Hb among the nine conditions. However, significant differences in body weight loss were observed among the bathing methods: W-bath>H-bath>showering (p<0.001). W-bath showed the largest increase in Tre and T̄sk, followed by H-bath, and showering. Significant differences in Tre after bathing among the room temperatures were found only at H-bath. The changes in Tre after bathing for H-bath at 25°C were similar to those for W-bath at 17.5°C and 10°C. TS and TC after bathing significantly differed for the three bathing methods at 17.5°C and 10°C (TS: p<0.01 TC: p<0.001). Especially, for showering, the largest number of subjects felt "cold" and "uncomfortable". Even though all of the subjects could accept the 10°C condition after W-bath, such conditions were intolerable to half of them after showering. These results suggested that the physiological strains during H-bath and showering were smaller than during W-bath. However, colder room temperatures made it more difficult to retain body warmth after H-bath and created thermal discomfort after showering. It is particularly important for H-bath and showering to maintain an acceptable temperature in the dressing room and bathroom, in order to bathe comfortably and ensure warmth. J Physiol Anthropol 21 (6): 277-283, 2002 http://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/en/.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)277-283
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of physiological anthropology and applied human science
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2002
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Sciences(all)


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