Ayurvedic medicine regards all neurological disorders as diseases due to the vitiation of the Vata Dosha. The main symptoms are paralysis, spasticity or rigidity of certain body parts.
The main methods of treatment are
- purification of the body by mild unctuous purgation
- oil and decoction enemas
- massages with medicated oils (Abhyanga)
- unctuous fomentation (heat application after oil massage, pouring of warm medicated oil over body parts or the head etc.)
- administration of Vata controlling drugs through the nose
- brain tonics and general rejuvenation therapies
Neurological diseases always require a long term treatment or repeated treatments with intervals. The success rate of Ayurvedic treatment is comparatively high.
Rheumatoid Arthritis (Amavata) is a joint disorder which affects multiple joints at various sites. It is described as “Amavata” in Ayurveda. The word ‘Ama’ means toxic material generated as an unwholesome product in the body due to weakening of the digestive fire. This ‘Ama’ is then carried by Vata Dosha, travels throughout the body and accumulates in the joints which are the seat of Kapha Dosha. As this process continues, all the joints are gradually affected, which results in severe pain and swelling. When Pitta Dosha also gets aggravated, it causes burning sensation around the joints.
The treatment of Amavata includes Langhana (fasting), Ruksha sveda (dry fomentation), internal administration of hot water, use of bitter and pungent food and medicine and digestives, Virechana (purgation therapy), Sneha pana (internal administration of medicated fats) and Basti: Anuvasana (oil enema) and Asthapana Basti (decoction enema).
Osteoarthritis (Sandhivata) degenerative joint disease is the most common form of arthritis, affecting millions of people around the world. Often called wear-and-tear arthritis, osteoarthritis occurs when the protective cartilage on the ends of bones wears down over time. It causes pain, swelling and reduced motion in the joints. Osteoarthritis can occur in any joint, but usually it affects the hands, knees, hips or spine. Osteoarthritis involves the entire joint, including the nearby muscles, underlying bone, ligaments, joint lining (synovium), and the joint cover (capsule). A variety of causes, hereditary, developmental, metabolic, and mechanical may initiate processes leading to loss of cartilage.
The common treatments of diseases due to the vitiation of the Vata Dosha like Snehana (oleation), Svedana (fomentation), mild purification, Basti (enemas) and Vata subsiding medicines, food and lifestyle are also applicable in Sandhivata
The pathologies underlying male and female infertility are manifold. Nevertheless, the treatment can be grouped under four main complexes:
- Avoiding the causes for infertility, this may include changes in lifestyle and nutrition, as well as work on psychological factors.
- Purification of the involved tissue elements and body channels and the female uterus by ensuring the proper work of the digestive fire and removing accumulated toxins and blockages.This is achieved by the internal and local application of herbal medicines.
- Controlling the Vāta Dosha (one of the three energies governing the body) which, when vitiated, is mainly responsible for the lack of conception, abnormal pregnancies, malformations of the foetus and miscarriages. This can be achieved by administration of herbal medicines, and also by avoiding stress, having an appropriate diet and applying oil massages.
- Proper nourishment of the tissue elements necessary for conception, meaning the female ovaries and the male semen. Ayurvedic medicine provides a wide range of herbal medicines and food items for this purpose.
In Ayurveda, Hridaya (cardiac region) is one of the Trimarma (three main vital organs) being also a Sadyapranahara Marma (Marma which is vulnerable for the loss of life immediately after an injury), one of the ten Prana Ayatanani (seats of life energy). It is the seat of many vital factors such as Chetana (consciousness), Manas (Mind), Triguna (three qualities of mind Raja,Tama,Sattva), Buddhi (intelligence), Ojas (essence of seven main body tissues), Rasa (nourishing element), Vayu (Prana and Vyana). All the above energetical, anatomical, mental and neurological elements have to be considered for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cardio-vascular diseases.
There is much more to Hridaya (heart) than a four chambered muscular organ pumping blood. According to Ayurveda, heart diseases have a strong mental aspect. The main treatment principle is cautious purification and palliation according to the vitiated Dosha (s) followed by specific Rasayana (rejuvenation) therapies.