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The Thalasotherapy and the Certificate of Quality


There are well documented findings regarding to the use of the sea water to cure some illnesses for 4000 years.

Nefertiti in the old Egypt, got cured from an ophtalmologic infection caused by clamydias, using sea slimes.

Hipócrates was the first one in prescribing the external and internal use of the sea water (350 years to. C.). There are reliable data that either the Greeks as Romans used the cold and hot sea Baths for the cure of certain affections.

It was in 1697, when the englishmen, Floyer and Russell, published a thesis on the correct use of the cold and hot sea baths. So it is considered England as the pioneer, being also founded there the first marine hospital in 1791, under the impulse of the Dr. John Lathan.

The Germans open several establishments at the beginning of the XIX century and, from then on, the development of the Thalasotherapy is constant. In 1778, it is inaugurated in Dieppe the first French institute and starting from this moment, the growth and professionalism they make that in our days, be one of the reference countries in the topic.

It was in France, on 18 June of 1997, when the thalasotherapy got official existence. The International Federation of Thalasotherapy Mer et Santè together with the certification of quality Qualicert, that contain the fundamental premises to define an institution as Center of Talasoterapia.

The mentioned premises can be summarized in the following form:

  • The Center should be located in a place of marine climate.
  • It should be worked with live sea water.
  • To have a professional staff with medical supervision.
  • To have an infrastructure and equipment adapted to take advantage of the benefits of the sea in the health of people.

The International Federation of Thalassotherapìe Mer et Santè has credited about 32 establishments with the certificate of quality since they all meet the requirements demanded for the correct practice of this marine therapy.

Of the total, 29 are centers located in the French costs and the remaining ones to countries of the Mediterranean Sea: Tunisia and Turkey. In Spain only a center has been distinguished with this certification. The thalasotherapy has been recognized officially in France in 1997, in the framework of the Certificate of Quality of the services, established to protect the consumer.

Created in 1986 to defend and to promote the Thalasotherapy due to the lack of an appropriate official regulation, the International Federation of Thalassotherapie Mer et Santè is the entity that represents before the official organisms, the correct operation of the thalasotherapy centers voluntarily adhered to its letter of guarantee of quality.

The Certificate Qualicert is the mark of quality that, to the initiative of the Federation, has been established and validated by the French Official Gazette in 1997, to serve as a base to the future controls of the thalasotherapy establishments in France and also to guarantee a quality of service for the water users. This certificate is highly respected abroad, as we have been able to check in our recent visit to Manantiales de Mar SPA and Centro de Talasoterapia, in Argentina.

In fact, this marine establishment is very interested in having that guarantee of quality and has requested voluntarily to become part of the International Federation of Thalassotherapie Mer et Santé.

During the journey through the modern facilities of this thalasotherapy center we observed that, for example, when one says "live sea water" we are referring fundamentally to the water with their two components: the inorganic and the organic, and inside this last one, there are the algae, the microplancton and the marine MUDS.

In this sense it is essential for the correct use of the sea water with therapeutic aims, to whatch carefully the mechanisms that could alter the live part of the water. During the gathering procedures and transport, heating and the addition of products which we use to treat the waters in the pools, we can influence on this living fraction.

We also knowed the treatment of sea water, directly succtioned from the coast 150 meters offshore. This water is them pumped toward the general cistern, crossing in their itinerary filters of sand that allow the passage of all the elements of the sea water.

From the cistern, the water is distributed to the dynamic pool, the marine jacuzzi, the hydromassage bathtubs and the Roman shower. The water is heated to 37º C because when the water reach this temperature (that is that of the human body), the biggest absorption of elements dissolved in the water, is achieved.

With regard to the transfer and especially to the filters, we are informed that the most appropriate are those of sand, with a such porosity that admits the microplacton pass. The water should also never be heated more than 40 degrees, since above this temperature, the proteins coagulate getting lost it leaves of the benefits of algae and other living elements.

Evidently, not any germicide product should be used in the pools of sea water (chlorine, alguicidas or similar)

We have to remember that the current definition of Thalasotherapy is the use with therapeutic aims, preventive or healing of the benefits of the sea: climate, water, algae, mineral salts, muds and other extractable substances. The main salts of the sea are the sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, chlorine, carbonates, sulfates and phosphates. And it is a prominent fact that coincide with the relative concentrations of the main salts of the human plasm.

By Mayte Suárez Santos. Journalist specialized in Medicine and Thermalism. Member of the French Society of Thermalism and Thalasotherapy for the Buco-dental Health. Publisher


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