Perinnehoitoa Kuumussa

Traditional healing

“The old folks know,” is a common refrain. In Kuhmo, like in many other areas, the know-how of traditional health treatments has been handed down from generation to generation as oral tradition. They have been treating ailments with herbs, or using peat and sauna for healing, perform cupping, and applying Kalevala-style massage treatments through the ages. Though there are no more of these old folk, the tradition remains in Kuhmo.

”Siitä vanha Väinämöinen/ jo tunsi avun totisen. Pian pääsi terveheksi; liha kasvoi kaunihiksi, alta aivan terveheksi, keskeä kivuttomaksi, vieriltä viattomaksi, päältä päärmehettömäksi, ehommaksi entistänsä, paremmaksi tuonoistansa.” (Kalevala, Elias Lönnrot. SKS 1894, 28. painos).

Traditional treatments tap into peat, herbs and sauna in creating well-being

Peat and bog water have been used for treatments in folk healing for a long time, even in medical use for more than 200 years. Rashes and bruises were treated with bog water. In folk medicine, the healing powers of the bog were used to ease rheumatic pain. It is important that the peat used for treatments is taken from a maiden bog, meaning a bog that has never been utilized, as intensive exploitation of ancient bogs and mires destroys the best healing properties of peat.

The purifying effects of cupping have been known for thousands of years and stem from early Mesopotamia. In Finnish tradition, cupping as a treatment was linked to monasteries, but it was also done in ordinary rural houses. The purpose of cupping is to cleanse the body, lower blood pressure, boost peripheral blood circulation, relax muscle tensions, treat skin problems and increase metabolism. The cupping process includes warming the skin in a sauna to ensure cleanliness through washing and disinfectant.


Along with these traditional treatments, Kuhmo offers sauna and herbal treatments. Sauna treatments include the sauna bath itself, whisking with a birch bath whisk, use of salt, honey, berry juices, herbs, water, and tar, and complete washing with alternating hot and cold treatments. There are many wellness products that relate to sauna bathing traditions, such as Christmas, Midsummer, and bridal saunas. Naturally, it is possible to bathe in different kinds of saunas in Kuhmo: earth sauna, smoke sauna, or an ordinary wood-heated sauna. Herbal treatments may be included as part of sauna treatments or done separately.

As Kuhmo draws on tales and traditions of the realm of the Kalevala epic, there are experts in the so-called Kalevalaic massage. It focuses on finding the key points of the body that are causing problems and treating them accordingly. A suction cup may be used for treatment if the problem point lies deeper. In the Kalevalaic massage, the whole body is treated, which in turn sets fluids circulating, and relieves muscle tensions and pinched nerves.