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Ayurveda in India

The ancient medical science of India

Ayurvedic Hospital, Ayurvedic Treatments, Traditional Ayurvedic Treatment - Ayurvedic Treatments

Ayurveda is not a medical system that addresses only diseases. The first and foremost aim is to preserve the health of the healthy.

The three humours function as pillars supporting the body. The derangement in the humours causes illness. The natural constitution (Prakrithi) of an individual and deranged state of the body in an illness (Vikrithi) are expressed with respect to Vatha, Pitha and Kapha. Medicines and herbs are grouped based on its effects on the humours.

Ayurvedic treatments are classified in two groups broadly

  • Shodhana chikitsa

  • Shamana chikitsa

Shodhana chikitsa

Shodhana chikitsa is Panchakarma therapy; literarily meaning fivefold therapy. It gives the long lasting benefits in the body. The five processes which are used for body cleansing in Ayurveda

  • Vamanam - Medically induced vomiting

  • Virechanam - Medically induced purgation

  • Nasyam - Administration of medicine through the nose in the form of drops or powders

  • Snehavasthy -Enema done with medicated oil

  • Kashayavasthy - Enema done with a mixture of honey, salt, herbal paste,herbal decoction and medicated oil.

Proper preparatory measures have to be undertaken prior to the treatment, to make the body ready for the cleaning. After completion of treatment patient may have to continue internal medicines, follow diet and lifestyle advises.

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Ayurveda

Shamana chikitsa

Shamana chikitsa is a method of treating diseased by appropriately planned diet, lifestyle and internal medicines. Shamana chikitsa is palliative therapy.

Rasayana

Rasayana treatment is Ayurveda’s unique way to prevent or reverse degeneration due to ageing and excessive cell oxidation. These are of two types

  • Kutipraveshika, a type of rasayana which has to be done with strict restrictions in diet and regimen. In this process patient will be confined in a specially constructed room as per textual direction for more than 30 days.

  • Vathatapika, in this treatment, restrictions are less compared to kutipraveshika, can be taken by a patient while leading a normal life.

We have successful experiences in both these types of rasayana treatments. A successful kutipraveshika rasayana done in our center in 2001 is a rare incident in Ayurvedic world.

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Uzhichil

Abhyanga or uzhichil is the special kerala type of oil massage done by one or two persons. For that suitable medicated oils for the body and the head are selected according to the condition of the person. The body oil can be warm or in room temperature accordingly and the head oil is mostly in room temperature. This is done for 45 minutes and suitable for sick and healthy alike. This is also mentioned in ayurvedic daily routine before a daily morning bath.

Mode of action:

The warm oil applied on the skin get absorbed through the skin cracks and inter-cellular spaces. The warmth of the oil and the hand movements during the massage helps to increase the peripheral circulation. This will enhance the absorption of the active ingredients in the oil through the blood and lymphatic circulation. The active ingredients will be transferred to the target organs accordingly.

Indications:

  • To relieve general weakness and tiredness

  • To impart good sleep

  • To improve blood circulation

  • To improve digestion and appetite

  • To prevent dryness of the skin

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Thalapothichil

This is a method of head packing in which the hair and the scalp will be covered with suitable herbal pastes depending on the condition. At first suitable oil for the head will be applied on the scalp and hair and then the paste. On top of the paste a tender banana leaf will be tied to cool the head and to prevent drying of the paste. After a specific period of time the paste will be removed and the head will be washed. At the same time suitable oil on the body can be applied to sit for 45 minutes till the paste is kept on the head. The commonly used paste contains dried gooseberry pulp made in to a paste with medicated buttermilk. Depending on the condition other herbs can be also added.

Mode of action

The pack imparts a little heat on the scalp and there by giving a sweating effect to the scalp. This improves the blood circulation on the scalp and helps to absorb the active ingredients present in the herbs. These stimulate the peripheral nerve endings and others get absorbed through the hair follicles.

Indications

  • In mental stress and anxiety

  • In sleeping disorders

  • Dandruff and loss of hair

  • Chronic head ache and sinusitis

  • In degenerative diseases of the cranial nerves etc.

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Sirovasthy

A type of oil application on the head in which medicated oil is collected on the head inside a leather cap. This is the best method of oil application on the head. This is specific for many of the diseases of the head, sense organs, nervous system and spinal cord. The temperature of the oil should be kept uniform through out the process. At the same time the body of the patient will besmeared with a suitable oil and a gentle massage will be done, especially on the neck and shoulders.

Mode of action

The warmth of the oil of the head will increase the peripheral blood circulation on the scalp and there by promote the absorption of the medicaments through the hair follicles and vessels. By stimulating the nerve endings below the scalp it will act on the effecter organ on the head and body.

Indications

  • Diseases of the brain and nervous system

  • Degenerative diseases of the nervous system

  • Chronic head aches

  • Stroke and facial paralysis

  • Diseases of the spine and vertebrae etc.

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Elakizhi

Elakizhi or Pathrapotala swedam is a type of massage done by bundles or cloth bags filled with herbal leaves and some other ingredients. Compared to uzhichil (oil massage) this one is stronger as the bundles are applied or pounded on the body. The type of leaves or the other ingredients can be variable depending on the condition of the disease. The leaves are cut in to small pieces and fried in neem oil or any other suitable oil with the other ingredients and tied in 4 cotton cloth pieces to make the bags. These are usually warmed in neem oil or castor oil through out the massage. This massage is usually done by 3 persons and for 45 minutes. After the massage the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given.

The commonest ingredients of an Elakizhi are:

Leaves of:

  • Ricinus communis

  • Calotropis Gigantea

  • Tamarindus indica

  • Pongamia glabra

  • Moringa oleifera

  • Euphorbia nerifolia

Crushed seeds of:

  • Anethum graveolens

  • Sesamum indicum

  • Trigonella fenu-graecum

  • Dolichos biflorus

  • Garlic

  • Lemon

  • and coconut scrapings

Mode of action

After the gentle body massage, the warm bundles are applied all over the body from neck to the legs. Special care should be given on the joints and muscles where ever pain and inflammations are present. As the herbs present in the bundles are anti-inflammatory in action, they have an affinity towards the weak muscles and joints. With the warmth of the bundles and the pounding of them on the affected part the peripheral circulation will be increased and it will help to enhance the absorption of the active ingredients.

Indications

  • In all types of joint diseases.

  • Rheumatoid arthritis and other types of inflammatory arthritis.

  • In paralysis of the body parts.

  • Diseases of the spine and lower back etc.

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Thailadhara

Siro dhara using medicated oil is called Thailadhara. For this different types of medicated oils can be used depending on the condition of the patient. At first suitable oil for the head and body are applied and a gentle massage is done on the body. Then the patient is laid on his back to get the flow of the oil on the forehead. This is continued for 45 minutes and at the same time a gentle massage is done on the body. After finishing the dhara the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and then a hot water bath is given on the body and special medicated water is used for head bath.

Mode of action

The medicaments present in the medicated oil get absorbed through the scalp and hair follicles. These will be effective for diseases of the body and head alike.

Indications

  • All nervous disorders

  • Stroke, facial paralysis etc.

  • Degenerative diseases of the sense organs and cranial nerves

  • For good sleep and relaxation

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Kateevasthy

A localized treatment in which warm medicated oil is kept on the affected part inside a boundary made of black gram paste. This is usually done on the back- kateevasthy, on the chest- urovasthy,on the back of the neck- greevavasthy and on the head sirovasthy. These are very effective for the localized pain, stiffness and inflammations.

Mode of action

The warm oil over the affected part improves the blood circulation and the medicaments get absorbed to the effecter organs. The oil relieves the pain and stiffness by its localized action. It nourishes the degenerated joints also.

Indications

  • Pain on the neck, lower back and chest

  • Restricted movements of the joints

  • Osteo porosis and other degenerations

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Podikizhi

Podikizhi or choorna pinda swedam is a type of bundle massage in which the bags are filled with herbal powders. Compared to uzhichil (oil massage) this is stronger as the bundles are applied or pounded on the body. The type of powders can be different depending on the condition. The herbs are made in to coarse powder and warmed in a dry pan and tied to bags in 4 cotton cloth pieces. These are usually warmed in neem oil or castor oil through out the massage. This massage is usually done by 3 persons and for 45 minutes. After the massage the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given.

The commonly used powder contains the following ingredients:

  • Sesame seeds

  • Horse gram

  • Cotton seeds

  • Castor roots

Mode of action

The application of warm bundles on the skin improves the peripheral circulation and there by enhancing the absorption of the medicaments through the blood and lymphatic system. Most of the herbs in the powder are anti inflammatory and pain relieving, so they will get absorbed in the affected joints and muscles. The warmth of the bundles helps to relieve joint stiffness and pain also.

Indications

  • In all types of inflammatory arthritis

  • Osteo arthritis

  • Degenerative diseases

  • Diseases of the spine and vertebral column

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Ksheeradhara

Sirodhara using medicated milk is called ksheeradhara. Pure cow’s milk is medicated with herbs like sanadal wood, camphor, vetiver roots etc. This is flown on the forehead of the person after a gentle massage on the body and oil application on the head. The temperature of the milk is made lukewarm in the beginning and then maintained as room temperature through out the process. Along with the dhara a gentle massage on the body is also done through out the 45 minutes. After that the head of the person is wiped well and the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes. Then hot water is used for body bath and luke warm medicated water is used for the head.

Mode of action

The medicaments applied on the head get absorbed through the scalp and hair follicles. These medicines will act on the body and head according to the disease condition. The gentle movement of the flow on the fore head helps for relaxation and imparts good sleep.

Indications

  • For all types of pitha diseases

  • For head aches and insomnia

  • For mental stress and anxiety

  • To improve memory and concentration

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Avagaham

Avagaham is a method of sweating for which the patient is seated in a tub full of hot herbal decoction. According to the condition of the disease suitable medicated oil can be applied on the body prior to this. The aim of this treatment is to sweat the body and there by making the vata moving in its own root.

Mode of action

It is a method of preparation for the cleansing treatment or the panchakarma. The oil application and the thorough sweating of the body help for the expulsion of the toxins from their bonded sites very easily. Because of the sweating it gives relief for the pain and stiffness of the joints and the back.

Indications

  • For pain on the lower back, upper back and hips

  • All the diseases of the urino-genital system

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Narangakizhi

Narangakizhi or jambeera pinda swedam is a type of bundle massage in which the bags are filled with fried lemon pieces with some other ingredients. This massage is rather strong as the bundles are applied or pounded on the body. Few lemons are cut in to pieces and fried with other ingredients like turmeric powder, coconut scrapings, fenugreek seeds, sesame seeds, rock salt, horse gram etc. till the lemon become tender. These are made in to bags in four pieces of cotton cloths. These bags are warmed in neem oil or castor oil through out the process. This massage is usually done by 3 persons and for 45 minutes. After the massage the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given.

Mode of action

The application of warm bundles on the body improves the peripheral circulation and there by enables easy absorption of the medicaments through the blood and lymphatic circulation. The pain relieving and anti inflammatory herbs present in the bundles relieves the pain and stiffness of the affected parts.

Indications

  • Sciatica

  • Spondylosis

  • Low back ache

  • Acute inflammatory arthritis etc.

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Thakradhara

Sirodhara done by using medicated buttermilk is called thakradhara. The medicated butter milk is made by mixing equal quantities of herbal decoction and butter milk. The buttermilk itself is medicated with some herbs depending on the condition. At first suitable oil for the head and the body are applied and a gentle massage is done on the body. Then the dhara starts with lukewarm buttermilk flowing on the forehead in a continuous stream. Along with that a gentle massage is done on the body without disturbing the head position. The commonly used butter milk is medicated with herbs like dried goose berry Pulp and Cyperus rotundus tubers. This is done for 45 minutes by 3 persons and after that the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes. Then hot Water is used for the body and the head is washed with lukewarm medicated water.

Mode of action

The herbal medicines in the butter milk will be absorbed through the scalp and hair follicles. These will be effective both for body and head diseases. According to ayurveda there is a concept about the human body, which can be compared as an upside down tree. For a tree any nutrients or medicaments given at the root can be utilized by the whole plant. Like that for the human body any medicament applied on the head can be made use of by all other body parts.

Indications

  • For all types of diseases of the head and nervous system.

  • For good sleep and relaxation

  • For diseases of the sense organs

  • For diseases of the hair and scalp

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Upanaham

Upanaham is a herbal poultice. In this herbal pastes are mixed with proper acidic liquids and other ingredients and tied on the painful and inflamed joints. Usually this is kept at least for 12 hours day or night on position. Over the paste herbal leaves having anti inflammatory Properties like calotropis, castor, datura etc. are tied and on top with cotton cloth.

Mode of action

The bandage produces some heat inside and it helps to increase the peripheral blood circulation on that part. It induces sweating and there by absorption of the inflammation inside the joint by the properties of the herbs used.

Indications

  • Osteo arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis

  • Other inflammations on the joints

  • To relieve stiffness of the joints

  • For wasting of muscles, with nourishing herbs

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Navarakizhi

Navarakizhi or Shashtika pinda swedam is a type of bundle massage in which the bags are filled with cooked Navara rice. Navara is a special type of rice with medicinal properties. This is cooked in a mixture of a herbal decoction and cow’s milk till it gets tender. Then it is made in to bags in cotton cloths and warmed in the same mixture of herbal decoction and cows milk through out the treatment. This is a rather soft massage and the bags are applied in circular fashion and long strokes on the body, especially on the joints. This is usually done by 3 persons and for 45 minutes. After the massage the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given.

Mode of action

The application of the nourishing and warm bags on the body improves the blood circulation and there by enables the absorption of the medicaments through the blood and lymphatic circulation. The warmth of the bundles relieves the joint pain and stiffness. The mixture of herbs and milk nourishes the skin and underlying structures.

Indications

  • All types of nervous degeneration

  • Numbness and burning sensation on the body

  • General weakness

  • Muscle wasting

  • Stroke etc.

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Kashayadhara

Sirodhara using medicated herbal decoction is called kashayadhara. For this purpose different types of herbal decoctions can be used depending on the condition. At first suitable oil for the head and body are applied and a gentle massage is done on the body. Then the patient is laid on his back to get the flow of the oil on the forehead. This is continued for 45 minutes and at the same time a gentle massage is done on the body. After finishing the dhara the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and then a hot water bath is given on the body and special medicated water is used for head bath.

Mode of action

The medicaments applied on the head get absorbed through the scalp and hair follicles. These medicines will act on the body and head according to the disease condition. The gentle movement of the flow on the fore head helps for relaxation and imparts good sleep.

Indications

  • For all types of nervous degenerations

  • For different types of head-aches.

  • For diseases due to old age etc.

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Thalam

A method of oil application on the head in which the suitable oil or paste is kept on the middle of the head in smaller quantities.

Mode of action

The medicines applied on the middle of the head get absorbed through the smaller openings on the middle part of the head. This will stimulate the peripheral nerves and there by do the specific action.

Indications

  • Insomnia

  • High blood pressure

  • Facial paralysis

  • Stroke

  • Cervical spondylosis

  • Stress and mental disorders

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Udwarthanam

Udwarthanam or Powder massage: This massage is done with dry warm herbal powder from the limbs towards the heart. This is meant for better lymphatic drainage and thereby reduces the water collection in the body. At first suitable oils for the body and the head are applied and a gentle massage done on the body. Then the warm, dry coarse powder massaged upward which imparts friction on the skin and helps to dissolve the fatty layer below the skin. This is usually done by 3 persons and for 45 minutes. After the massage the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given.

The powder usually used is a mixture of the following herbs:

  • Sesame seeds

  • Horse gram

  • Cotton seeds

  • Castor roots

Mode of action

This is mainly useful for reducing the amount of fat just under the skin layer. The warmth and the upward movements with rubbing help to dissolve the fatty layer and also to clean the skin. This gives good tone to the muscles and relieves the stiffness of the joints.

Indications

  • To reduce body weight

  • To clean the skin off discolorations and scars as in chronic skin diseases

  • In early stages of nervous and muscular diseases

  • In inflammatory joint diseases etc.

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Lepanam

Application of a suitable herbal paste on the affected body parts is called lepanam. This can be used for many conditions according to which the herbs can be selected. This is usually done only in the day time and kept until it dries. The temperature of the paste can be warm or in room temperature accordingly.

Mode of action

The pack on the body part improves the blood circulation to that part of the body and there by helps the absorption of the medicaments.

Indications

  • Pain and swelling on the joints

  • Discolorations on the skin

  • Inflammations on the body parts

  • Skin diseases

  • On ulcers and wounds

  • Burning sensations on the body

  • Any other localized conditions etc.

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Nellikkathalam

Application of a herbal paste made of gooseberry pulp and medicated butter milk, on the middle of the head in which a suitable oil is kept is called nellikkathalam.

Mode of action

The medicines applied on the middle of the head get absorbed through the smaller openings on the middle of the head. This will stimulate the peripheral nerves and there by do the action.

Indications

  • Insomnia

  • High blood pressure

  • Facial paralysis

  • Stroke

  • Cervical spondylosis

  • Stress and mental disorders

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Pizhichil

Pouring of warm medicated oil all over the body is called pizhichil. Depending on the condition of the disease the oil for pizhichil can be selected. At first suitable oil for the body and head are applied and a gentle massage is done on the body. Then the warm oil is poured all over the body from neck to feet using special earthen pots. The oil is collected and warmed to use again. After that all the oil will be wiped from the body and the patient is allowed to take rest for a few minutes and later a hot water bath is given. During this treatment the movements of the patient will be restricted in order to give maximum rest to the body and to help for the process of healing.

Mode of action

Pouring of the warm oil all over the body make the peripheral nerves soothe and increase the blood circulation. There by absorption of the medicaments will be enhanced and the herbs act on the target organs. The warmth of the oil relieves the pain and stiffness of the joints and mobilizes it.

Indications

  • For all types of degenerative joint diseases

  • For all nervous disorders

  • Diseases of the spine and vertebrae

  • Chronic rheumatisms etc.

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Pichu

The word pichu means soaking a piece of cloth or cotton in specific liquids like oils, herbal juices, decoctions etc. In this treatment the cloth or cotton piece soaked in the liquid will be kept on the affected parts. The temperature of the liquid can be cold or warm according to the disease condition. If it is warm its temperature should be kept uniform by warming it in between. According to the body part the name of the pichu can be different, for eg. Pichu on the lower back is called kateepichu and pichu on the head is called siro pichu.

Mode of action

The warmth of the oil improves the blood circulation on that body part and stimulates the peripheral nerve endings. This will help for the quick absorption of the medicaments to the effecter organs. This makes the lubrication of the joints and relieves joint stiffness.

Indications

  • Pain and stiffness of the joints

  • Muscle cramps

  • Head aches if done on the head

  • Diseases of the eyes, ears etc. if done on the head

  • Degenerative diseases of the joints

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Tharpanam

This is an eye treatment to nourish and correct the diseases of the eyes. The procedure includes collecting well melted and strained medicated ghee over the eyes. For this purpose a boundary is made around the eyes using black gram paste. This is a very powerful treatment to rejuvenate the eyes and also for the cure of the diseases of the eyes.

Mode of action

The ghee in general has a specific property to carry the qualities of the herbs used for medicating the ghee to the corresponding organs easily. Because of the pitha dominance of the eyes ghee will be the best medicine for the eye diseases. The active ingredients of the ghee will be absorbed through the structures of the eyes and it stimulates the ophthalmic area of the brain and the optic nerve.

Indications

  • Refractive errors of the eyes

  • Degenerative diseases of the eyes and the optic nerve

  • Diseases due to over use of the eyes

  • Damages of the eyes

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Dhanyamladhara

Pouring of warm medicated herbal decoction called Dhayamla all over the body from head to neck is called Dhanyamladhara. At first the suitable body oil and head oil are applied and a gentle massage is done on the body. In some cases of extreme inflammation, even body massage and application of oil on the body and head may be avoided. Then the warm liquid will be poured all over the body with gentle strokes on the body. The liquid is again collected and warmed for further use. This is continued for 45 minutes and then the patient can take rest for a few minutes. If the condition is suitable a warm water bath can be given, otherwise body will be wiped with a clean towel.

Mode of action

Because of the acidic nature of the liquid it helps for the absorption of the inflammation. The herbs present in the liquid are also having anti inflammatory action, so it relieves the pain and inflammation.

Indications

  • Gout and other inflammatory arthritis

  • Rheumatic fever

  • Acute stages of hemiplegia

  • Inflammatory stages of other arthritis

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Siropichu

It is one of the methods of oil application on the head. In this treatment a piece of cloth or cotton soaked in warm medicated oil is kept on the head for a specific period of time. The temperature of the oil should be kept uniform by warming and pouring of the oil again and again.

Mode of action

The warmth of the oil increases the blood circulation on the scalp and stimulates the peripheral nerves. This will help for the absorption of the medicaments through the scalp.

Indications

  • Chronic head aches

  • Nervous disorders

  • Degenerative diseases of the sense organs

  • Diseases of the brain and spinal cord etc.

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Putapakam

This is an after treatment of nethra tharpanam. This should be done after the course of tharpanam to clean the eyes off the ghee and to relieve tiredness caused by excessive absorption of ghee. This will clear the vision and relieve the heaviness and haziness of the eyes after the tharpanam. For this treatment herbal juices are used to collect inside the black gram mould as in tharpanam. It can be mixed with goat’s milk according to the condition.

Mode of action

The herbal juice clears the sticky ghee particles from the eyes and the channels of the tear glands will be freed from the clogging due to the washing. This will help for clearing the vision and make the eyes feel light and fresh.

Indications

  • All the conditions in which nethra tharpanam is indicated

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Ksheera Dhoomam

This is a method of sweating for a specific part of the body using medicated milk steam. This is the best method of sweating for the head and face. For this a herbal decoction is made which is mixed with milk and this is boiled in closed vessel. From this vessel the steam can come out through a tube Usually a decoction of bala roots (Sida rettusa) is used mixed with pure cow’s milk for most of the vata diseases. Before the application of steam suitable oil will be applied on the face and neck. Care should be taken to protect the eyes from the hot steam.

Mode of action

With the warm milk steam, the body part sweats and opens the skin pores. This will help to relieve inflammation and stiffness of the organs and also enables the proper movements of the elements through the channels.

Indications

  • Facial paralysis

  • Diseases of the sense organs

  • Head aches

  • Diseases of the brain and nervous system

  • Diseases of the chest and heart etc.

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Snehapanam

Internal administration of medicated oil or ghee in larger doses is called snehapanam. This is one of the preparations for the panchakarma therapy. The dose of the oil or ghee will be increased daily depending on the digestive capacity of the person. During this treatment the food and daily routine of the patient will be highly restricted.

Mode of action

Depending on the herbs present in the ghee or oil, it will be absorbed to the specific body parts for its action. The oil or ghee will get penetrated into every tissue and the toxins in those tissues will be united with the fat molecule. This will release the bonds of the toxins with the tissues. With the help of proper sweating after the snehapanam the toxins will be liquefied and leads to the nearest channels.

Indications

  • In all chronic diseases like skin diseases, digestive disorders, nervous and muscular disorders, degenerative diseases etc.

  • As a preparation for every panchakarma.

  • In stronger diseases and stronger persons

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Vamanam

Vamanam means medically induced vomiting which clean the upper respiratory tract and upper digestive tract. This is mainly done in conditions in which kapha or doshas in relation with kapha is in imbalance. Proper preparations will be done before the procedure in which snehana and swedana are the main ones. Compared with the normal vomiting this process will clean the excessive doshas and the toxins collected in the systems. After the preparations the patient have to take the medicine in the morning- the kapha kala (the time of aggravated kapha) – between 6-10am in a medium of milk with honey and rock salt.. For this procedure the patient will be seated in comfortable chair to support his back. After the process of vomiting the person will be given some medicated fume inhalations etc. The activities and the food of the person will highly restricted on the day.

Mode of action

The supporting medicines to the actual vomiting drug start its action before digesting it only. This irritates the mucosa in the stomach to secrete the digestive juices in large quantities and there by stimulating the vomiting centre in the brain. This will result in the anti peristaltic movements and expel the excess digestive juices with pressure. With the loss of the medicine through the vomitus the strength of the medicine will be deteriorating and there by stop the movements naturally.

Indications

  • Indicated in all kapha diseases

  • Kapha dominant skin diseases like leukoderma

  • Asthma and related conditions of the respiratory system

  • In kapha dominant mental diseases etc.

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Virechanam

Virechanam means medically induced purgation. This is a cleansing method to clean the lower digestive tract. This is a method of cleansing for elimination of excessive pitha dosha. Virechanam is usually done after proper preparations as in every panchakarma. The medicine used will be decided after a thorough evaluation of the koshtum of the patient or the nature of the digestive tract. The medicine will be given to the patient in the morning in empty stomach. Then he has to drink warm Water to stimulate the digestive tract. The activities of the patient and his food will be highly restricted on the day.

Mode of action

The medicine will start its action only after digestion. During the process of digestion it absorbs lot of water from the intestines and there by diluting the contents of the stomach. This will stimulate the defecating centre in the brain and activates various secretions in the body like bile, pancreatic juice, other digestive juices etc. These increased amounts of hormones and secretions get collected in the stomach and by the peristaltic movements it gives a push propelling the stomach contents out. The excessive production of secretions in these glands makes them clean by removing the long collected ones. By that way the purgation clears liver, spleen and pancreas along with the digestive tract.

Indications

  • All pitha diseases

  • All types of skin diseases

  • All digestive disorders

  • Diseases of the eyes

  • Mental disorders

  • Chronic rheumatisms etc.

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Nasyam

Literally means introducing medicaments through the nose. This is the best method of cleansing for the head and it cleanses all the organs above the neck. As the head is the main seat of kapha, it is the prime treatment for kapha. For this also suitable preparations are done depending on the condition and the strength of the patient. Nasyam will done while the patient lying on his back on a comfortable table with stretched neck. Then his face and neck are thoroughly oleated and sweat by water vapor before putting the drops in.

Mode of action

The medicine applied to the nostrils irritates the mucosa of the nose and the Para­- nasal sinuses. This stimulates the secretion of the collected doshas and mucus. The effect of the medicines absorbed through the circulation helps to heal and nourish the structures above the neck. In ayurveda the head of the body is considered as the root of a tree. So any medication giving to the head will be effective for the body also.

Indications

  • All diseases of the nose and Para-nasal sinuses

  • All diseases of the head and neck

  • All diseases of the hair and scalp

  • All diseases of the brain and spinal cord etc.

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Snehavasthy

Snehavasthy is enema done with oil alone or a combination of oil and other medicines. This is mainly for nourishing the lower digestive tract and to lead the vata in its normal path. This can be done alone or in combination with kashayavasthy. Snehavasthy is usually done after food, this is to prevent the upward movement of the oil in to the stomach. For that the patient should be prepared by snehana, swedana, vamana, virechana etc. according to the condition. Then after a major meal the person is laid on a comfortable table in his left lateral position and his abdomen and the hip region are oleated and sweat well with steam. Then the suitable amount of oil is warmed and filled in a syringe and introduced gently through the anus and pushed in with a constant pressure. After that he can lay on his back and some movements of the legs are done to keep the oil in the intestines for the maximum time. Usually the oil will come out after 1-2 hours. If the oil is not coming out also there is nothing to worry.

Mode of action

The medicated oil will get bonded with the waste materials in the intestine and also nourish those parts by the action of the sesame oil. The toxins will be easily removable after the proper preparations like snehana and swedana. By the action of the oil it alleviates the imbalance of the apana vayu(the component of vata that is responsible for the functions like urination, defecation, menstruation etc.). And once vata is under control all the other doshas will be also in normal condition. The oil makes the intestines smooth and easy for movements.

Indications

  • All vata diseases

  • All diseases of the vertebrae and spine

  • All gynecological disorders

  • Chronic rheumatisms etc.

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Kashayavasthy

Kashaya vasthy is enema done with a combination of herbal decoction and other medicines. This is mostly to cleanse the intestines and to make the vata in balance. This is always done in combination with the snehavasthy and always before food. To prepare the solution for the kashayavasthy there are strict guide lines which should be followed properly for the better action of the treatment. The medicines prescribed should be mixed together in the given sequence and warmed slightly before introducing it. As in snehavasthy the patient’s stomach and back should be properly oleated and sweat by using water vapor. Then in his left lateral position the medicine is introduced through the anus in constant pressure. As this is not meant for retaining inside, the patient can go to the toilet when he feels so. After the bowel movement and a hot water bath he can take his food which altogether will relieve the discomforts he may feel after the enema.

Mode of action

This procedure can expel the toxins collected in the intestines by means of preparations like snehana, swedana etc. The decoction present in the liquid makes it clean and the oil part in the solution prevents the drying of the intestinal secretions by the cleaning. Repeated use of enema with oil and decoction help to clean and restore the functions of the digestive system and there by the functions of vata.

Indications

  • All vata diseases

  • Chronic rheumatisms

  • Other joint diseases

  • Various nervous disorders

  • Deep rooted skin diseases

  • Diseases of the urino -genital system, gynecological diseases etc

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Rakthamoksham

Rakthamokshum or blood letting is very effective in some diseases which the blood impurities are the main reasons for the disease. Various methods are used for this purpose for e.g. using leech, by venesection, through shallow wounds etc. The appropriate method can be selected according to the disease either localized or generalized, dominance of vata, pitha and kapha etc. This panchakarma is selected for cure in cases in which all the other treatments found ineffective.

Mode of action

According to ayurvedic principles toxins and vitiated doshas which cause diseases can be made expel by means of internal and external oleation and sweating. Removal of these toxins through the nearest body opening makes the body clean and relieves the diseases also. But in some diseases these methods of cleaning will not be so effective and in those cases we have to go for purification of blood also. By the different methods of blood letting in ayurveda the quantity of blood removed should be minimum without disturbing the normal functioning of the body and at the same time cleaning the body also.
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Medicated Milk Bath

This is a medicated form of royal bath practiced by Cleopatra. For this pure cows milk is medicated with herbs which are good to improve beauty and complexion. The person has to lie down in this luke warm medicated milk for about one hour after an aromatic steam bath with a face mask using saffron and goat’s milk. This is prescribed in ayurvedic texts as a rejuvenating treatment for convalescence. This improves complexion, softens the skin, and moisturizes it.

Mode of action

The aromatic steam bath makes the skin pores open and softens the skin. Entering in to the milk bath after the steam bath means it will enhance the absorption of the medicaments through the open skin pores. The medicated milk softens the skin and the warm milk cleanses the skin from the dead skin and other blemishes. The saffron and goats milk mask on the face will be more invigorating the face skin.

Indications

  • In disease convalescence

  • A well known beauty treatment

  • To treat some of the skin disease etc

  • Chronic head ache and sinusitis

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Herbal Steambath

This is a method of sweating done by means of water vapor enriched with some volatile oils. This process helps to sweat the body by opening the skin pores and removing the toxins. As this is done by wet heat, it wont make the patient uncomfortable and the smell of the herbs used like Cymbopogon citratus(lemon grass) makes a fresh feeling by relieving the tiredness and body aches.

Mode of action

The sweating makes the skin pores open and there by relieves the muscle tensions and tiredness. Sweating makes the skin soft and supple and because of the increased blood circulation the absorption of the medicaments will be easier.

Indications

  • Skin diseases in which sweating is minimum or absent

  • Joint pains and stiffness

  • Before the panchakarma as a method of sweating

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Beauty Treatments

The beauty is the reflection of our mind, similarly the concept of beauty care in Ayurveda is not just the superficial glow. Along with superficial treatments for improving the skin health, Ayurvedic treatments helps in revitalizing all the body tissues and rejuvenating the body and mind.
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Mudpack and Mineral Bath

This is a method of packing the body using a mixture of termite mud, paste of neem and turmeric. In this the whole body and the scalp will be well covered by the paste and the patient has to sit in moderate sun until it dries. After drying it the patient will be taking a mineral bath in water, rich in minerals from a natural spring. This was an ancient method of diagnosis for diseases of the bones and joints.

Mode of action

The application of the paste gives some heat on the skin and there by increases the blood circulation on the skin. This will help for the absorption of the medicaments easily. The herbs mixed in the mud are having skin refreshing properties and so it will be good to improve the health of the skin.

Indications

  • Skin diseases like eczema, scabies etc.

  • To improve the skin texture and soften the skin

  • It can be used as a beauty treatment by using other herbs with the mud.

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Acupunture & Acupressure

This is a treatment modality of Chinese origin dating back 5000 years. The treatment of various diseases by inserting very fine needles in to the specific points of the body is termed acupuncture. In Latin “acus” means needles and “punge” means pricking. In the treatment of acupuncture, it is not only essential to select and locate the points precisely but also to use appropriate manipulations of the needles in accordance with the nature of the diseases and the chosen point.Acupuncture and acupressure are included in our treatment courses depending on the condition of the patient and its compatibility with various Ayurvedic treatments.
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Other Simple Treatments

Anjanam

Application of herbal kajal for cleaning the eyes, cooling the eyes and to clear the vision.

Aschyothanam

Application of eye drops for various eye diseases, to clear the vision.

Back massage

Massaging the upper or lower back with suitable medicated oils to relieve aches and pains and eases the tensed muscles

Dhoomapanam

Inhalation of medicinal fumes in sinusitis, chronic head ache etc.

Dhoopanam

Fumigation of the hair and scalp/body using herbal fumes for fragrance, fungal infections, head louse etc.

Floral head pack

Packing the hair and scalp with flowers for fragrance and against head louse and knits.

Gandoosham

Filling the mouth with suitable decoctions or oil to clear the mouth, strengthen the teeth and gums, relieves tooth ache.

Gharshanam

Rubbing the affected area using a suitable material to reduce hardness of the skin in chronic skin diseases.

Henna

Application of henna on scalp and hair for coloring, conditioning and against hair fall, dandruff etc.

Kabalam

Gargling with medicated oil or herbal decoction to clear the mouth, to strengthen the teeth and gums.
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