A husband and wife are forging a new career in Westhill with the area’s first salt cave for respiratory ailments.
Jason and Donna Orton left behind the uncertainty of the oil industry and more than a year on have established their business in Abercrombie Court.
Clients, who suffer from a range of respiratory issues, including asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and allergies, relax in one of two treatment rooms at The Salt Cave where the walls and floor are clad in salt.
A specialist machine then finely grinds medical grade salt that is released into the air at prescribed concentration levels for the duration of each session.
The therapy, also known as halotherapy, dates back to ancient Greece which sought the benefits offered by naturally occurring salt caves for improved health and wellbeing.
Providing a 100% natural and drug free complimentary treatment, halotherapy, derived from the Greek alas, meaning “salt”, is believed to loosen mucus and reduce inflammation making breathing easier.
The couple were assisted in setting up the venture by Business Gateway Aberdeen City & Shire.
Donna said: “We were increasingly aware of the vulnerability of the oil and gas industry.
“Although we both had good jobs, our working days were getting longer and more stressful which began to impact on our family life, so the timing seemed to lend itself to a total lifestyle change.
“My mum and grandmother are regulars at Salt Caves in Inverness and Edinburgh, and both had seen a significant reduction in their respective symptoms and an upturn in their general wellbeing.”
Carron Taylor, of Business Gateway, said: “Deciding to take a new career path can be a gamble but it’s one that is paying off for Donna and Jason as their enterprise has proven to be a hit.
“The couple have always had a clear vision of what they want to achieve, and have used our support to establish the franchise in Aberdeen.
“Continued support through our European-funded Business Boost programme will help them access additional advice to grow their customer base further.”
The Salt Cave has up to 200 hour-long sessions now running each week.
The couple are focusing on attracting clients from the corporate world for whom salt therapy can offer relief from health issues and aid with stress management and relaxation.