Ayurveda started more than 5000 years ago. There are glimpses of
Ayurvedic treatments and medicines in various ancient scripts.The
word Ayurveda is derived from two words - Ayu meaning life and Veda
meaning knowledge or science. It literally means knowledge about
The formation of living organisms is described in the principles of
Ayurveda.The focus is on obtaining a balance among the Tridhoshas,
i.e. Vatha, Pitha and Kapha. Illness is the result of imbalance of
Like modern medicine, Ayurveda is also divided into several
important branches of treatment dealing with various human aspects.
Each branch follows various methods for regenerating the equilibrium
of body, mind and soul.
Kaya Chikitsa: The Ayurvedic equivalent to general medicine,
this branch deals with the routine diseases that are likely to
affect human beings, and their treatment.
Bala Chikitsa: This branch, equivalent to pediatrics, deals
with prenatal and postnatal baby care as well as the care of a woman
before and during pregnancy. It also covers various diseases of
children and their treatment.
Graha Chikitsa: This Ayurvedic branch is the same as
Psychiatry in modern medicine. It focuses on the detection and
effective treatment of mental disorders. It also treats
Salakya Chikitsa: Corresponding to the E.N.T. field of modern
medicine, this branch of Ayurveda diagnoses and treats diseases
affecting organs like the ear, nose and head.
Salya Chikitsa: The great Maharishi, Susruta was the inventor
of this branch of Ayurveda. He even wrote a book on surgery titled 'Salya
Chikitsa'. This book describes various surgical operations and the
devices associated with them.
Visha Chikitsa: This branch deals with the toxins that enter
the body from vegetables, minerals and animal origins. It is
equivalent to toxicology in modern medicine. Pollution is said to be
the cause of various epidemics.
Rasayana Chikitsa: In addition to do's and don'ts for better
living, this branch of Ayurveda contains various treatments for
improving beauty, health and intellectual power. Rasayana Chikitsa
is equivalent to rejuvenation therapy in modern medicine.
Vajeekarana Chikitsa: Equivalent to the aphrodisiac treatment
in modern medicine, this branch of Ayurveda helps to stimulate the
production of sexual hormones in one's body, thus increasing sexual
Treatement in Ayurveda
been practised for thousands of years in India. In ancient times
Rishis were involved in making of medicine and treating people.
Several researches and studies have been undertaken in this field of
medicine. Today, these treatments are very popular all over the
Shodhanam: Various therapeutic procedures are followed to
facilitate elimination of harmful factors:Vamanam (emesis therapy),
Virechanam (purgation therapy), Nasyam (nasal medication), Vaste
(enema therapy), Raktamoksham (blood-letting therapy).
Pre-treatments for panchakarma: The panchakarma pre-treatment
includes three different processes: Thalam, Snehanam, swedanam.
Thalam: Before any external treatment thalam has to be
performed. In this treatment, a special mixture of herbal powder and
medicated oil is applied on the upper portion of the head and
allowed to remain for 20 to 45 minutes.This treatment helps in
conditions associated with ENT, insomnia and migraine.
Snehanam: This is a process of oleation . The medicated oil
may be applied externally on the body or given orally.
Swedanam: Swedanam, or the sweating treatment is carried out
through various procedures:
Treatments in Ayurveda
In this treatment, lukewarm
herbal oils are applied all over the body by two to four trained
masseurs in a special rhythmic way for about 60 to 90 minutes per
day for a period of 7 to 21 days. This treatment is very useful for
Rheumatic diseases like arthritis, paralysis, hemiplegia, paralysis-agitanus,
sexual weakness, nervous weakness and nervous disorders etc.
It is a process by
which the whole body or any specific part thereof is made to
perspire by the application of certain medical puddings externally
in the form of boluses tied up in a muslin bag. This is applied by
two to four masseurs for about 60 to 90 minutes per day for a period
of 14 days. This treatment is for all types rheumatism, pain in the
joints, emaciation of limbs, blood pressure, cholesterol and certain
kinds of skin diseases.
In this process,
some herbal oils, medicated milk, medicated butter milk etc., are
poured on the forehead in a special method for about 45 minutes in a
day for a period of 7 to 21 days. This treatment is mainly for
insomnia, vatha predominated diseases, mental tension and certain
herbal oils, herbal extracts etc., are applied through the rectum
daily for a period of 5 to 25 days. This treatment is for arthritis,
paralysis, hemiplegia, numbness, gastric complaints associated with
rheumatism and constant constipation.
herbal oils are poured into a cap fitted on the head for 15 to 60
minutes per day according to the patient’s conditions for a period
of 7 days. This treatment is highly effective for facial paralysis,
dryness of nostrils, mouth and throat, severe headaches, burning
sensation of head and other vatha originated diseases.
is a typical massage with herbal powders for about 30 minutes daily
for a period of 14 to 28 days. This treatment is for the diseases
like hemiplegia, paralysis, obesity (excess fat) and certain
type of oil massage in which strokes are given according to the
diseases for 45 minutes per day for 14 days. This treatment is very
useful for obesity, especially for diabetic Gangrene (a condition
due to lack of blood circulation in the extremes of the body) etc.
juices, medicated oils etc., are applied through nose for 7 to 14
days. This treatment is highly effective for certain kinds of
headaches, paralysis, mental disorders, certain types of skin
ghee is given internally in a proportionally increased quantity for
a period of 8 to 12 days. This treatment is for osteo arthritis,
sporaris, leukaemia etc.
leaves and herbs or herbal powders are applied to the whole body in
boluses with hot medicated oils for 45 minutes per day for a period
of 7 to 14 days. This treatment is for osteo arthritis, arthritis
with swelling, spondilosis, sports injuries etc.
herbal liquid is poured all over the body in a rhythmic way through
a special vessel for 45 minutes to 1 hour daily. This treatment is
very effective for hemiplegia, paralysis, rheumatic complaints etc.
Herbal oils and
decoctions are applied through the vaginal route. This treatment is
good for gynaecological disorders. It is also a purification process
for genital organs.
this process specially prepared warm medicated oil is kept over the
lower back with herbal paste boundary. This treatment lasts for 45
minutes to 1 hour and it is good for any type of back pain and
medicated oil is kept over the chest for 45 minutes. This is an
effective treatment for asthma, other respiratory problems, heart
diseases and muscular chest pain.
is fomentation with medicated cow milk. This treatment is good for
facial paralysis, Bell’s palsy, speech disorders and other nervous
disorders of the face.