Physicochemical Nature and Therapeutic Potential of Thermal Springs: An Overview
In this article physicochemical characteristics and therapeutic potentials of world's renowned thermal springs including Monghopir (Pakistan), Shrgalijuut (Mongolia), Ranong (Thailand), Kusatsu (Japan), Southern/Nothern part of Limpopo (South Africa), Arkanasas (USA), Selangor Malaysia and Ikogosi (Nigeria) were reviewed and compared. Themal springs were characterized by flame photometery, graphite furnace atomic absorption spectroscopy, ion chromatography, inductively coupled plasma atomic emission spectroscopy, X-ray flourescent spectrometry, atomic absorption spectroscopy and titrations (argentometric, acidemetic & complexometric). They are classified on the basis of pH, temperature and mineral contents. The common mineral contents in these springs include 0.67-621.99 mg/L sodium, 0.67-189 mg/L potassium, 2.06-84 mg/L calcium, 0.00-56 mg/L magnesium, 0.12-12 mg/L fluorides, 0.00-982.62 mg/L chlorides, 0.15-442 mg/L sulphates and 4.3-494 mg/L bicarbonates. Their temperatures were found in the range of 26.0- 90.50 °C with the pH 2.0-9.7 and TDS value of 104.74-2188 mg/L. The mineral concentration in most thermal springs is highly ideal for the treatment of numerous diseases including atopic dermatitis, psoriasis, rosacea, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, osteoarthritis, chronic rhinosinusitis, chronic bronchitis/asthma, obesity, wounds healing and cardiovascular diseases. For curative purposes, the body is soaked in thermal waters or water may be used in the form of drinking/inhaling.
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