"Panch" means five and "karma" means action. So, panchakarma means five different ways of treatment.
According to Ayurveda, diseases formed in the body are due to the formation of toxins, or ama. Regular cleansing of the body by removing this ama is recommended. Panchkarma is this cleansing process which helps in the elimination of ama from the body and thus prevents formation of disease.
It is a cleansing therapy to strengthen the body’s metabolic functions with herbal medicines and controlled food habits.
The basis of the therapy is elimination. As the wastes and excess of doshas are eliminated from the body the person becomes healthy.
Those who suffer from chronic disease are said to benefit by it tremendously. In Ayurvedic terms, it also helps those who undergo a seasonal imbalance of tridoshas.
This therapy is recommended for maintaining youthfulness and building immunity and resistance against diseases.
The panchakarma treatment is found to be helpful in chronic diseases where treatment with allopathic medicines has its limitations.
Rheumatoid arthritis, skin diseases, hemiplegia, polio, epilepsy, insomnia, hypertension, cardiac problems, intestinal diseases, peptic and duodenal ulcers, ulcerative colitis and asthma are some of the conditions where this therapy proves of immense help.
Panchakarma is an important component of Ayurvedic treatment, which eliminates vitiated doshas from the body.
Panchakarma has a cleansing or detox phase followed by rejuvenating detox. Panchakarma aims at cleansing the body in two ways.
The internal Panchakarma is aimed at a detox or cleansing the body, concentrating on the cleansing of the gastrointestinal tract and head through the only opening to head- nose.
The treatments included in external Panchakarma are mostly out of the thought treatments to cure the circulatory debris and water retention in the body. The swelling and inflammations in our body can be only accessed by external therapies of Panchakarma. These mostly have external applications of medicated herbal pastes, hot water baths with decoctions, massages or Abhyangam, Kizhis, Shirodhara, etc.
Benefits of Panchakarma
The Benefits of Panchakarma are too numerous to count.
Panchakarma is the ultimate Ayurvedic detoxification of body and mind. It also strengthens the immune system to restore health and well-being. It is a compendium of therapies that are highly individualized based on the Ayurvedic constitution type (Prakruty), imbalances (if any), digestive fire, age, immune status, health conditions & many other factors. Depending on an individual’s needs all or part of five therapies are utilized. Panchakarma, for the most part is a comfortable therapy, but there can be periods of discomfort due to powerful release of toxins.
- Metabolism correction (Correction of Agni-The digestive fire, as the first step towards balancing health)
- Re-energizing (Includes Internal cleansing treatments along with external cleansing and rejuvenation program)
- Weight management (Gives natural solutions to your weight problems)
- PCOS (Effective ayurvedic treatments for PCOS and PCOD)
- Eliminates AMA (toxins) strengthens tissue functions.
- Assists balance all three doshas.
- Stress management(Reduces stress, improves relaxation & tolerance.)
- Boosts the bodies immunity levels.
- Improves strength, endurance and vitality.
- Helps implement a healthy diet and lifestyle.
- Slows the ageing process.
5 Types of Panchakarma Treatment
Vamana - Vomiting Therapy
Vamana, a Pradhana karma of Panchakarma, is an important Samshodhana procedure (bio-cleansing method) recommended for cleansing of bahudoshas.
Generally Vamana treatment is carried out in the early morning on an empty stomach when the Kapha is intense. The night before the therapy, Kapha aggravating foods are provided to the patient. On the day of the treatment, depending on the condition of the patient, heat is applied to the region of the chest as well as the back portion to liquefy the Kapha. After the liquefaction of Kapha in the body, a special medicated drink is given to the patient that stimulates the emesis. Waste products (vitiated dosha) are eliminated through the upper gastrointestinal tract. Proper rest is advised after undergoing Vamana therapy.
Vamana treatment is targeted to expel increased Kapha Dosha out of the body. When Kapha dosha increases, it causes certain types of diseases – such as cold, cough, etc. If the extent of Kapha increase is less, then some oral medicines can be given to suppress it. But if it has increased to a large extent and if it has moved from its natural place to other places, then it needs to be expelled out of the body. By expelling it out, the disease gets cured, often completely. Since Kapha is situated in the chest region, expelling it from the oral route is very easy. Hence, Vamana treatment is designed. To expel it out, first the Kapha Dosha needs to be forcefully brought from the extremities and different organs into the stomach, and then vomiting is induced.
In this therapy controlled vomiting is induced to expel increased Kapha Dosha out of the body. This treatment is effective for asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, indigestion, epilepsy, excessive salivation and diseases in falty tissue and muscular tissue like hemorrhoids, tumors of fat and muscle.
Virechanam - Purgation Therapy
Virechana is expelling the vitiated doshas and toxins through anus. This therapy can be conducted as an individual detoxification therapy or as a follow up therapy. Virechana is a non painful and easiest procedure. Complications are usually very rare in this therapy.
Virechanam helps to get rid of pitta toxins from the body that get accumulated in the liver and gallbladder. It is extremely beneficial in management of pitta disorders such as dermatities, chronic, fever, heartburn, jaundice,etc.
This processes clean up the gastro intestinal tract.Virechana is induced by administering herbal purgatives , when pitta dosha is dominant. Patient is made to drink warm water repeatedly as he passes stools. Patient is later rehabilitated to special diet and lifestyle(paschat karma).
Vasti - Enema Therapy
Vasti is one of the major panchakarma treatments.In this therapy medicine is administered through anal route and toxins is eliminated through anus. Thus help in balancing thri dosa and detoxify body tissues.
Basti, is the most effective treatment of vata disorders. It relieves constipation, distention, chronic, fever,cold, sexual disorders, kidney stones, heart pain, backache, sciatica and other pains in the joints.
Vata is powerful dosa in the three dosa so this technique is important amoung the five karma. Vasti is two types Niruha vast that is vasti with medicated decotion and other is Anuvasana vasti that is vasti with medicated oil. Like other therapy vasti has also pretherapeutic and post therapeutic technique. Pretherapeutic includes snehana lubrication internally and externally and also swedana sweat therapy.these poorvakarma help in loosening and liquefying the toxins accumulated in cells and get collected in colon.
After the application of herbal medicines this toxins collected in colon is eliminated out. In curative aspect vasti is indicated for arthritis, backpain, sexual dysfunction,neuro muscular problems etc. Diet is very important factor and should follow the physician very strictly. Person who has been given basti must have a light diet for a day. He/she must also avoid sitting, standing, and talking for a long duration, traveling, sleeping during the day, coitus (sexual intercourse), exposure to cold or too much sunlight, anxiety, anger, untimely meals, an incompatible diet, and suppression of natural urges .
NASYA - Nasal Administration
Nasya is one amoung the five major processes in Ayurveda. It is a therapeutic process in which medicines(herbal)are administrated through nostrils.The nose is the doorway to the brain and also the entryway to one’s inner self. The nasal administration of medicated drops is recommended for an excess of bodily humors accumulated in the sinuses, throat, nose or head areas.
They are eliminated through the nearest possible opening – the nose.The therapy cleanses and opens the channels of the head, thereby improving the process of oxygenation which has a direct influence on the functioning of brain.NASYA is given to the disease of head neck and shoulders. Imbalanceof body humers (dosa imbalance) can be balanced by nasya especially kapha type imbalances. It can be used both as preventive and curative aspect.Nasya strengthen the eyes ears and nose. Eliminate the accumulated toxins in head region. Nasya treatment is highly effective for head ache, migraine, frozen shoulder, hair fall,facial palsy etc. We have to prepare our body for nasya therapy this is called ( poorva karma) pre therapeutic measures.
The nasal administration of medication is called nasya. Nasya is indicated for prana disorders, like, sinus congestion, migraine headaches, convulsions and certain eyes and ear problems.
Raktamoksham - Blood purification Therapy
Rakta Moksha is an easily endured method for bloodletting which is an effective blood purification therapy, in which carefully controlled removal of small quantities of blood is conducted to neutralise accumulated Pitta toxins of many blood-borne diseases.Raktamokshana Ayurvedic treatment of Panchakarma works both as curative as well as preventive therapy.It is used to treat the following: Pigmentation, Scars, Wound, Osteoarthritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Pericarditis, Gouty arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis, Atopic dermatitis, Pain, Uremia Inflammations, Allergies, Skin disorders such as Eczema, Allergic Dermatitis, Tonsillitis, Sciatica, Abscess.
Traditional Ayurvedic Method for Purification and cleansing of the Blood. It helps treating blood related diseases such as skin disorders, edema, and localized pains. It also treats some type of arthritis and headaches - typically diseases caused by acidity
5 Types of Therapy
This is synchronized (vidhi) whole body massage from head to the toe with warm medicated oils and oils are chosen by the Ayurvedic doctors according to the Prakruti (psychosomatic constitution) and illness.
The massage is done by one/two experts in a soft rhythmic way for about 40-60 minutes in a seven different position - 1- Sitting, 2- Lying, 3- On right side, 4- On stomach, 5- On left side, 6- Lying on back, 7- Again on sitting, so as to cover each and every part of body followed back herbal steam bath for about15 minutes as told by Acharayas (Ayurvedic scholars).
The regular massage once in week (as told in shastras) protects from stress, anxiety, exhaustion and vata disorder. This massage nourishes the body, extends life span, provide good sleep, vision and better physical stability. This also creates sense of inner peace and improves skin texture and complexion.
This massage is beneficial in maintaining the body in proper shape as it prevents the accumulation of fats in tissue. It also improves complexion, texture and provides softness and shine to the skin.
Shirodhara is a traditional Ayurvedic rejuvenation therapy. Dhara (continuous flow) of medicated herbal oil/buttermilk is poured over shiras (head) is called Shirodhara.
It starts with Abhyangam for about 20-30 minutes then through Dhatra pot (specially designed vessel), a Dhara is poured in constant flow in centre of forehead (location of third eye). Combination of oils is decided by Ayurvedic doctors according to the constitution of body. In it oil is maintained at a particular temperature for about 30-45 minutes followed by gentle massage on forehead.
The pressure created meticulously on third eye point through this procedure which rejuvenates the pineal gland i.e. the Brain of Brain. When pineal gland gets rejuvenated, it automatically increases the efficiency of the brain in all respects.
This treatment is done in absolute silence. It takes you to deep relaxation and balanced state of rest in mind and body. It helps to relieves insomnia, stress, tension, anxiety, anger, chronic headache, hypertension, hair problem and gives mental relaxation. It helps to overcome stress and have ill effect on nervous system.
Those patient suffering from insomnia will go in deep sleep while administering the therapy. It will tune up brain and improve mind therapy.
Podikizhi is a special massage with poultice form of herbal powders and medicated powder with warm herbal medicated decoction. It helps in reducing obesity, promotes circulation, increases perspiration which in turns eliminates wastes and revitalizes the skin, therefore improving skin tone. It relieves from joint pains, rheumatism, arthritis, gout and muscular disorder.
It is a form of dhara treatment with medicated herbal buttermilk in which continuous flow is poured over the body in a rhythmic manner. This treatment is very beneficial in psychosomatic diseases like psoriasis, stress and strain. It has also good effect in chronic insomnia.
In this, the small receptacle is form in low back affected area of medicated Dough and warm medicated oil is poured in it. It is highly useful in gridasi (Sciatica) and low back ache.
It is a powder massage which is done to reduce the cellulite accumulation on the body. Steam bath is also recommended after udwartanam. It reduces obesity, strengthens muscles, give mobility to joints.
Diet After Panchakarma
The food at Santulan Health care is designed as a healing diet that gladdens the heart & nourishes the body .
According to Charaka and Sushruta - fathers of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery - "the entire world seeks food; it is the life source of all beings; Clarity, Longevity, Intelligence, Happiness, Contentment, Strength and Knowledge are all rooted in food."
The body needs different types of nutrients that perform various functions. The body gets these nutrients from the vast variety of foods available according to age, sex, physical activity, physiological conditioning and one's constitution. Ayurveda recommends food that is "Saatvic" in nature. "Saatvic" food is vegetarian, has a light sweet taste, with mild flavours of spice and is easy to digest. It consists of vegetables, and mainly emphasizes freshly prepared and properly cooked food - consumed at the right time, and in the right quantity. A balanced diet includes all the six tastes - sweet, sour, salty, bitter, pungent and astringent.
At Santulan Health care, the Diet is customized as per individual Body Constitution keeping in mind, the principles of Contradictory food combinations [Virudha Aahar] and the order of tastes in the meal. We use only the purest ingredients recommended by Ayurveda - Rock sugar/ Jaggery, Rock salt
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