Ayurveda in Kerala
With a history of more than 5000 years, Ayurveda is an alternative treatment method with hardly any side effects. It is a simple, practical science of life. The word 'Ayurveda' is composed of two Sanskrit terms - 'Ayu' meaning life and 'Veda' meaning knowledge.
According to Ayurvedic system, human body consists of three primary life forces or biological humors, which are Vatha, Pitha and Kapha. These three doshas are called the tridoshas. A balance among these life forces is essential for proper health. Any imbalance among the tridoshas causes a state of unhealthiness or disease.
Ayurvedic treatment measures include internal medicine, external medicine, surgical treatment and psychotherapy. They can be classified under two groups - tonification and reduction. Reduction therapies decrease excesses in the body while tonification methods nurture insufficiency in the body. Reduction therapy has two parts called pacification and purification. Pacification is done with herbs, fasting, exercise, sunbathing and exposure to wind. Purification is a special form of therapy for elimination of the disease causing humors. All these require preliminary Ayurvedic practices of oleation and sweating.
Kerala a southern state of India, has developed its own Ayurvedic treatment modalities like Dhara, Pizhichil, Navarakizhi, Elakizhi, Sirovasthi, Thalapothichil etc. which are highly effective in a number of diseases, which include motor neuron diseases, arthritis of various kinds, skin diseases, heart diseases, peptic ulcer, asthma, peripheral vascular diseases and gynecological disorders.
Some of the prime body treatments and body care in Ayurveda have been listed below: -
Lukewarm herbal oils are applied all over the body by two to four trained therapists in a special rhythmic way continuously 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, Parlysis, Hemiplegia, Paralysis-Agitanus, Sexual Weakness, Nervous Weakness and Nervous disorders.
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 muslin bag. Two to four therapist applies this for about 60-90 minutes per day for a period of 14 days. This Treatment is for all types of Rheumatism, Pain in the Joints, Emaciation of limbs, High 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 7-21 days. This treatment is mainly for Insomnia, Vatha Predominated diseases, Mental tension and certain skin diseases.
Certain herbal oils and herbal extracts are applied through the rectum daily for a period 5 to 25 days. This Treatment is for Arthritis, Paralysis, Hemiplegia, Numbness, Bastric complaints associated with Rheumatism and constant constipation.
Certain lukewarm herbal oils are poured into a cap fitted on the head for 15 to 60 minutes per day according to the patient's condition for a period of 7 days. This treatment is highly effective for facial paralysis, Dryness of nostrils, mouth and throat, Severe headaches, and other Vatha originated diseases.
A typical massage with herbal powder for about 30 to 45 minutes daily for a period of 14 to 28 days, this treatment is for the diseases like Hemitplegia, Paralysis, Obesity and certain Rheumatic ailments.
Special 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 and many more.
Herbal juices and medicated oils are applied through nose for 7 to 14 day. This treatment is highly effective for certain kinds of Headaches, Paralysis, Mental disorders and some types of skin disease.
Mediated Ghee is given internally in a proportionally increased quantity for a period of 8 to 12 days. This treatment is for Osteoathritis, Psoriasis and Leukaemia.
Herbal 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 osteoarthritis, arthritis with swelling, spondilosis and sports injuries.
Warm 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 and other such diseases.
Herbal oils and decoctions are applied through the vaginal route. This treatment is good for gynecological disorders. It is also a purification process for genital organs.
In 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 spinal disorders.
Like Kativasthi warm medicated oil is kept over the chest for 45 minutes this is an effective treatment for asthma, other respiratory problems hearth diseases and muscular chest pain
This is fermentation with medicated cow milk. This treatment is good for facial paralysis, Bell's palsy, speech disorders and other nervous disorders of the face.
Special powder mixed with medicated oil is applied on the top of the head for 20 to 45 minutes. This treatment is helpful for ENT problems, insomnia and migraine.
This is a process by which medicated herbal paste is applied on the affected part and is useful for various types of inflammatory conditions.
The premium Ayurvedic centres in Kerala include Nagarjuna Ayurvedic Centre, Kalady that bagged the 2002-03 award for Best Ayurvedic Centre by Kerala tourism, Sera Sankara Ayurveda Vaidyasala, Perunnai, Changanacherry and Kairali Ayurvedic Health Resort, Palakkad.