Salt lamps are large pieces of pure Himalayan Salt with a small bulb inside or they can be decorative baskets filled with large crystals of salt.
The importance of negative ions... Salt lamps are natural negative ion generators. At any given time, there are both positive and negative ions in the air. “An ion is an atom or molecule in which the total number of electrons is not equal to the total number of protons, giving the atom a net positive or negative electrical charge.” Negative ions occur more often in nature and they are often created by things like lightening storms, sunlight, waterfalls, and ocean waves. This is one of the reasons people often report feeling renewed or refreshed after a storm or at the beach.
Positive ions are often created by electronic devices like computers, TVs, microwaves, and even vacuum cleaners and can often exacerbate problems like allergies, stress and sleep trouble. Negative ions can neutralize positive ions (they bond together) and help cleanse the air.
How does it work...
The unique combination of salt and a light source in salt lamps are what cause the negative ions. Salt is hygroscopic, meaning that it attracts water to its surface and this water evaporates quickly due to the small amount of heat from the light source. Negative ions are generated during the evaporation process. Since things like airborne mold, bacteria, and allergens often carry a positive charge, they can be neutralized by negative ions. Generally speaking, negative ions increase the flow of oxygen to the brain; resulting in higher alertness, decreased drowsiness, and more mental energy,” says Pierce J. Howard, PhD, author of The Owners Manual for the Brain. “They also may protect against germs in the air, resulting in decreased irritation due to inhaling various particles that make you sneeze, cough, or have a throat irritation.”
Places like waterfalls and beaches where negative ions are naturally produced can have a negative ion concentration of up to 10,000 negative ions per cubic centimeter whereas busy cities can have negative ion levels as low as 100 ions per cubic centimeter. Salt lamps are a very effective alternative.