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Panchakarma
Pancha Karma is the cornerstone to Ayurvedic management of disease. Pancha Karma is the process which gets to the root cause of the problem and corrects the essential balance of 'Tridosha' in body. Pancha Karma is not only good for alleviating disease but is also a useful tool in maintaining excellent health. Ayurveda advises undergoing Pancha Karma at the seasonal changes to clean the body, improve the digestion and to improve the metabolic processes. Panchakarma is a Sanskrit word that means "five actions" or "five treatments".

This age-old science of purifying the body is an ancient branch of Ayurveda, TheTreatment in Ayurveda consists of two main types.
One is Shaman Chikitsa, used to subdue the vitiated Doshas, due to which any ailments may be produced. It is administered by using various medicinal herbo-mineral preparations.

However, if the Doshas are vitiated beyond a particular level, they give rise to various endotoxins, which have a tendency to be accumulated in the minute channels. These are beyond the level of pacification and hence need to be eliminated or removed from the body. In such cases, the second type of treatment, which is Shodhan Chikitsa or cleansing therapy, is indicated. Since it consists of the five types of main therapies, it is known as the Panchakarma Chikitsa.

Panchakarma has been given a special place in all the ancient Ayurvedic texts. Aacharya Charak, the author of the most important ancient text on internal medicine, has described a wide use of Panchakarma therapy for almost all the major diseases. Two separate sections, Kalpa Sthanam, and Siddhi Sthanam in Charak Samhita describe the details of special decoctions and other preparations used for Panchakarma therapy.

Panchakarma includes three parts namely:
Poorva Karma (Preparatory Methods)which includes :
1. Paachan (Digestion)
2. Snehan (Internal and external oleation)
3. Swedan (Fomentation)

Pradhan Karma (Main methods)which includes :
1. Vaman (Induced vomiting)
2. Virechan (Induced purgation)
3. Basti (Medicated enema)
4. Nasya (Nasal medicine)
5. Rakta Mokshan (Artificial bloodletting)

Paschat karma- this includes sansarjan karma (specific dietetics), dhumapana (smoking of medicinal cigars ) and some rules to follow specific activities.

Abhayanga
Abhyangam’ is a Sanskrit word which means oil application. It is commonly known as Ayurvedic Oil Massage. "Skin" the largest organ of the body is a sense organ of touch.
Abhyangam is used as a therapy and is widely practised throughout out the world. It provides cure for various disorders like stroke, Arthritis, Lumbar Spondylitis, Cervical Spondylitis, Sport Injuries, Parkinsonism and many other muscle, joint and nerve related disorders. This type of therapeutic massage should be performed by a trained Ayurveda therapist. Using specialized strokes and other massage techniques, the head, palms, soles and ears should be given due importance and massaged carefully

Ayurvedic ancient texts recommend daily Abhyangam and it should be practiced by everyone. This type of daily oil massage can be a simple oil application and be done by one’s own self. Abhyangam when practised daily bestows one with long life span , energy, complexion and youthful skin.

Abhyangam however is not advised for people suffering from fever, obesity, indigestion and diarrhea.

The benefits of Abhyangam are:
  • Imparts strength to all the sensory(skin, eyes..) and motor organs (hands, legs..)
  • Maintains colour and complexion of skin, prevents the signs of aging, skin dryness and itching
  • It prevents head ache and induces sleep, calms the mind and gives relaxation.
  • Reduces hair fall.
  • The blood vessel and nerves in the skin are toned up therefore prevents nervous disorders.
  • It improves vision.
  • Relieves fatigue and feeling of exhaustion and tiredness
  • Improves the muscle tone and builds the immunity.
  • It reduces the aggravated Vata.
Swedana:
The term Swedana is said to be derived from the Sanskrit language. The word ‘swid’ in Sanskrit means “to sweat or perspire”, and swedanam simply means “sweating”. Also, the word ‘sweda’ pertains to the “internal excreta of the body” which is said to be a by-product of fat tissue. So swedanam therapy is very helpful in liquefying the sticky and adherent doshas which have become deposited in the peripheral tissues of our skin. If swedanam is done correctly by qualified people in the proper way, it will soften and melt these toxins in an optimal manner for the body to effectively expel them The swedanam process opens up the pores on our skin and helps the body to get rid of the impurities of our body through the sweat glands. Aids in the expulsion of toxins in the body through the tiny pores of the skin along with sweat.

Benefits:
  • Increases the blood circulation and also reduces any joint inflammation.
  • Rejuvenate and revitalize the skin, giving it a smooth texture.
  • Helps to improve digestion.
  • Helps in fighting depression.
  • Acts on fat tissue thereby aids in weight loss.
  • Relieves stress.
  • Eases pain in the muscles and also sore muscles.
  • Reduces numbness, stiffness, rigidity, heaviness of your limbs and thereby improves mobility.
  • Clears bodily ducts and channels.
Vaman karma:
Vaman is one of the five therapies of panchakarma in Ayurveda. Vaman means therapeutic vomiting which is a medicated emesis. This treatment is done for the aggravated kapha dosha, which dislodges the toxins mainly from the respiratory and gastrointestinal tract. This therapy is also done for preventive & curative purposes. Ayurveda believes that different seasons have a great influence in the aggravation of doshas, ex: Kapha in hemant (spring season), pitta in Sharada(winter)season and vata in greeshma(summers) season. Hence one can adopt Vaman therapy in Spring i.e hemant season as a preventive therapy in order to prevent disorders related to kapha.

Benefits:
  • Vitiated and aggressive Kapha dosha is expelled out of the body, leading to cure of disease.
  • The digestion and metabolism power gets enhanced.
  • Normal health is restored.
  • The sense organs, mind, intelligence, and complexion become clear and gain strength.
  • The person gains strength, nourishment and immunity.
  • It improves the chances of fertility, virility and sexual power.
  • It helps to slow down aging process.
  • One can live healthily for long time.
Virechana Karma
Virachana Therapy is defined as the medicated purgation therapy, which cleanses the Pitta and purifies blood, by clearing the toxins from the body. The treatment concentrates on the toxins that are accumulated in the liver and gall bladder. The gastro-intestinal tract is also cleansed by Virachana therapy.

Virechana is prescribed after properly judging the type of disease and tolerance of the patient. Normally this particular karma is performed in the diseases of Alimentary canal like chronic constipation, indigestion, anorexia, worm infection etc. Purgation is given with care in specific amounts accordingly.

Benefits:
  • - Detoxification in case of accumulation of Pitta Dosha.
  • - Eliminates toxin accumulation in the GI tract.
  • - Effective treatment for piles, constipation, acidity, ulcers, liver/ spleen diseases, jaundice, inflammations.
  • - Cleanses body from poisoning.
  • - Cures mild and chronic skin disorders.
  • - Relives headaches, anaemia, pain in the large intestine, non-healing wounds- Helps manage diabetes, asthma and heart diseases.
  • - Reduces gynaecological disorders.
Nasya
Nasya’ is an Ayurvedic practice that encourages nasal administration of medicinal herbs, decoctions and oils. Commonly such treatments are known to clear sinus congestion, help clear accumulated toxins from head and neck region. However in Ayurveda the purpose of Nasya and many different application of Nasya are used for therapeutic purposes. For therapeutic purposes medicated ghee, oils, herbal decoctions or herbal powders are administered, depending on the health condition.

Benefits -

There are numerous benefits of nasya treatment, some of the notables ones include:
  • It develops and strengthens the shoulders, chest, skin, and neck.
  • The sensory organs become much stronger after nasya therapy.
  • Any person witnessing grey hair can get rid of it with regular nasya treatment.
  • Nasal medication also strengthens the visual site of a person.
Raktamokshana:
Blood is one of the most important constituent of the body. Therefore, the blood's conditions has a direct influence on the four parts of life, they are: soul (atma), mind (manas), senses (indriyas) and body (sharira). It is essential that the blood be free of toxins in order to sustain life which maintains a fine physiological balance which is required for good health.

Raktamokshana means blood-letting or getting rid of the toxins in the blood. It can be done either with the help of special leeches or by scalp vein. Raktamokshana is thus a ayurvedic procedure that purifies blood, thereby promoting health and improving the patient's immunity. When administered by skilled ayurvedic doctors / consultants, raktamokshana can provide rapid relief.

Raktamokshana treats blood-related diseases such as skin disorders, edema, and localized pain. Additionally, it also treats some types of arthritis and headaches - typically diseases caused by acidity.

Vasti:
Vasti is most important procedure among Panchakarma. The word Vasti is named so because the urinary bladder of animals was used to eject contents of either unctuous drugs or eliminatory drugs in to rectum of the body in ancient days. Vasti karma may also be understand by term “medicated or herbal enema”.

The procedure of introducing the Ayurvedic medicines (oushadha, siddha (processed) kwath (decoction), tail (oil), ksheera (milk), mamsarasa (meat soup) etc to the Pakwashaya (large intestine) through guda (anus) is called Vasti Karma. It is also given through yoni (vagina), mutra marga (urethra) and to Vrana (wound or ulcer). The Vasti karma is considered to be the best treatment as it has got multifarious action on the body rather than other Panchakarma procedures. Vata is considered as active force. All the movements in the body are activated by Vata. Vata is pacified or controlled by Vasti karma and therefore is considered as Ardha chikitsa.

In modern medical system enema is used only to remove the stool from intestine/ rectum, but in Ayurveda, it will also produce Shodhana (detoxification and bio purification) of doshas, samsamana (pacifying) of disease, increases strength, vigor, immunity and longevity.

Benefits of Vasti Karma :
  • Vasti karma is an excellent therapy for the detoxification and cleansing of the body.
  • Vasti karma stimulates the secretion of colons and thus provides a good health.
  • It is known to promote the liquefaction of ama and mala (waste products) in the colon and thus quite beneficial for the person suffering from constipation.
  • Vasti karma stimulates the colonic peristalsis and thus helps in the elimination of faeces rapidly.
  • In addition to that, this therapy is quite effective in the treatment of various diseases like sexual disorders, constipation, distention, kidney, backache, pain in the neck region.

Benefits of Panchakarma

  • Completely purifies the body
  • Riddance of toxins
  • Speeding up the metabolism
  • Reducing weight
  • Enhancing the strength of digestive fire
  • Opening up of blocked channels
  • Relaxing the mind and body
  • Rejuvenation of tissues
  • Boosts Immunity

Other Therapies ---

Patra Pinda Sweda:

Patra means leaves of medicinal plants. Pinda means a bolus. Sweda means Fomentation or sudation. The swedana karma or sudation therapy which is given by using a bolus which is prepared by the different combination of medicinal leaves which is heated with medicinal oil along with the medicinal herbs is called as patra pinda sweda. It is an excellent choice for those who want to get relief from a variety of symptoms effectively. The treatment involves heating a combination of medicinal plants that are having analgesic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-degenerative properties.

Benefits:

  • It rejuvenates the bones, muscles and nerves
  • Improves the complexion and color of skin
  • Reduces the pain, stiffness, and inflammation of muscles
  • Treats nerve disorders including paralysis
  • Detoxifies the body by inducing sweating process
  • Lowers arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis problems
  • Helps to reduce sciatica problems
  • Treats bursitis
  • Enhances the circulation
  • Reduces stress thereby increasing sleep
  • Minimizes sprains, swelling and cramps
  • Removes free radicals from the body
  • Nourishes the skin conditions
  • Tones the joints and muscles
  • Helps to get relief from Mylagia and Neuralgia
Pizhichil (Thailadhara)
This therapy is a beautiful combination of two classical Ayurvedic treatments, Snehana (oleation) and Swedana (sudation). The whole body is bathed in streams of lukewarm medicated oil with simultaneous soft massage. Three therapists attend to the client, focusing on their particular needs. More than three liters of relaxing, medicated oil is used in this therapy. Pizhichil protects the body from illnesses and builds up immunity for a healthy life. It is very useful for rheumatic diseases, arthritis, paralysis, sexual weakness, neurological disorders, blood pressure, nervous weakness and helps to arrest the aging process.

Benefits
  • Relieving anxiety
  • Combating depression
  • Regulating blood pressure
  • Relieving body pains
  • Treating rheumatic diseases
  • Alleviating arthritic symptoms
  • Overcoming paralysis
  • Curing sexual weakness
  • Reducing neurological disorders
  • Keeping skin young
Udvartana:
Udvartana is one among the sub-types of Panchakarma which is a process of invigorating the whole body through a powder massage. It is a well known Ayurvedic powder massage that includes scrubbing of the whole body using the ubtan (paste) made out of the mixture of the different herbs and grains which contain the property of scrapping the fat. Therefore it is best done in conditions of obesity and cellulite beneath the skin.

It is also one of the detoxification processes. It helps in excess fat and cellulite conditions by scrubbing and massaging the body in upward strokes which produces certain heat energy which scraps and liquefies the fat. The herb penetrates the body through the skin pores and removes the sluggish lymphatic toxins. This technique not only detoxifies but also improves the blood circulation and establishes a rejuvenation effect in the body.

Benefits:
  • Reduces excess fat in the body.
  • Improves the skin complexion.
  • Eliminates bad odour due to excess sweating or other reasons.
  • Corrects the imbalance of doshas.
  • Vitalizes and rejuvenates the body.
Shirodhara:
Shiro means “head,” and dhara means “dripping oil as if a thread.” Shirodhara as a treatment consists of a stream of warm oil run continuously on the forehead. Traditionally, the oil is run from a copper vessel held about six to eight inches above the forehead.

The purpose of shirodhara is to calm the nervous system. Inherent in this process is choosing an oil that has qualities which support the mind and body to come back to balance. Shirodhara oils contain herbs such as ashwagandha, brahmi and bhringaraj. The person giving you the treatment may determine that a different oil is appropriate for you, and will adjust it according to your vikriti (state of imbalance) and the season.

Shirodhara is both relaxing and nourishing. The treatment helps to improve mental clarity and comprehension. Other long lasting benefits of Shirodhara include:

Benefits of Shirodhara
  • Helps mental focus and concentration
  • Reduces and relieves migraine headaches
  • Improves sleep patterns
  • Heightens the senses and the sensitivity of all five senses.
Akshi Tarpan
In this process the eye is filled upon with medicated oil or ghee for a certain period. The patient is asked to lie down on the table comfortably. Then a circular boundary is made with a height of about one and half inch around the eye socket by using dough of black gram(masha). Then the slightly warmed medicated ghee or oil is slowly poured in this cavity,while keeping the eyes closed. During this process the patient is asked to remain calm, motionless and open and close the eyes frequently,so that the drug may remain well in touch with eyeball.

This Panchakarma treatment will provid strength to your eyes, an essential part of good eye health. You will feel nourishment in the eyes and freshness and lightness in the eye area. You may also notice more sound sleep and less wrinkles and dark circles around the eyes..

Benefits of Akshi Tarpana
  • Nourishes tired, dry, rough and injured eyes.
  • Strengthens the nerves and muscles of eyes.
  • Gives the freshness to the eyes.
  • Increases the circulation of the facial muscles and facial nerves.
Janu Vasti
Janu Vasti is one of the most effective Ayurvedic treatment for chronic knee pain, stiffness, inflammation and injury. The Janu Vasti Ayurvedic treatment involves retaining pain relieving, warm herbal oils over the affected area for a duration of time using gram flour, followed by gentle massage or Abhyanga. The medicated oil will be retained over the affected knee joint in a compartment made around the knee joint using wet flour. The medicated oils and medicines for the treatment will be selected based on the patient and the condition.

BENEFITS:
  • Lubricate joints
  • Improves oxygen and blood circulation
  • Treats sports injuries
  • Prevents degenerative diseases
  • Relieves pains, sprains, ligament tear, inflammation
  • Relaxes and nourishes bones, muscles, ligaments and nerves
  • Protect the cartilage of knee
kati Vasti
Kati vasti is a highly effective treatment for back pain and spinal disorders.

The waist area of the body is called Kati. Holding warm ayurvedic oils on the affected areas is called Vasti. Kati Vasti involves retention of specially prepared warm herbal oil over the lumbosacral area inside a dam made out of dough for certain period of time.The temperature of oil is maintained reheating and continuously adding more oil. The oil is kept on for 30-45 minutes.

The hot medicated oils helps melt lower spine rigidity and strengthen your bone tissue. The healing properties of herbal oils used for kati vasti deeply clean and fortify the blood, build strong muscle and connective tissues, and lubricate the joints, joints keeping them flexible and pain free.

Benefits of Kati Vasti:
  • Alleviates numbness due to Sciatic nerve compression & most types of low-back pain.
  • Strengthens back muscles and joints.
  • Effective treatment for any type of back pain & spinal disorders, stiffness and other back concerns related to spinal disc problems.
  • Increases the circulation in the region.
  • Kati Vasti alleviates lower back conditions like Lumber Spondylosis, Inter vertebral disc prolapses, Lumbago (low back ache), and Sciatica.
  • Alleviates pain associated with fracture, dislocation, spinal tuberculosis and tumors.
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