Despite what you may have been told growing up, there are a lot of reasons why you shouldn't bathe every day. Although about two-thirds of Americans shower daily (in contrast, half of all people in China bathe just twice a week), scrubbing up, especially with antibacterial soap and hot water, can come at a price. According to Harvard Health, antibacterial soap can kill off "good" bacteria and encourage the growth of less friendly organisms, while hot water can also strip away so-called "normal" microorganisms that create protective antibodies and give our immune systems a welcome boost. So why on earth would you shower every day, especially if you're not going out anywhere?
While it's never a good idea to irritate broken or dry skin, for those who don't have such issues, a daily shower can help more than it hurts, especially when you're confined to your home because of the coronavirus.
Amid the crisis, many Americans are experiencing increased levels of anxiety and depression. Not only does a daily shower help establish a familiar routine, but that burst of warm (or even cold) water can also have an impact on how you feel. According to Psychology Today, researchers in Virginia found that cold water baths can help with depression, as the low temperature activates the sympathetic nervous system and increases the release of norepinephrine in the brain.
If you're finding it difficult to maintain an exercise regimen without access to outdoor spaces or the gym, a warm bath can provide similar benefits. Like exercise, the warm water can reduce inflammation and increase levels of nitric oxide in the blood, lowering blood pressure.
Another benefit: If you're quarantining with a partner or other family members, they'll probably appreciate a cleaner you.