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Panchakarma Treatments

Surya's panchakarma treatments aim for the purification of the body, it's detoxification and rejuvenation. ‘Panchakarma’ refers to five essential therapeutic treatments which include vamana (oral administration of medicines which induce vomiting), Virechana (oral administration of medicines inducing purgation), Snehavasti (ano-rectal administration of medicated oils), Kashayavasti (ano-rectal administration by medicinal herbal extracts) and Nasya (nasal administration of medicated oils/ medicinal herbal extracts).

In addition to restoration and rejuvenation of health and therapeutic management of diseases, Arurveda also recommends panchakarma treatments for the prevention of diseases. Looking at the perspective of well-being, Panchakarma treatments can be done at any time to keep the immunity and metabolism of the body strong. It also helps to prevent the toxins that accumulate in the body. They enhance and restore the essential balance of body and mind.


Course of Panchakarma Treatments

Ayurveda prescribes the course of Panchakrma Treatments with a minimum of 7 days duration and a maximum of 28 days for absolute wellness and for the treatment of diseases. The actual duration may vary in individual cases in accordance with the complexity of the problems and the patient’s general physical conditions.

Some of the most popular therapeutic applications in brief:

Panchakarma therapy is performed in 3 stages:


Purvakarma

Preparatory procedures that help the body discard the toxins present in the stomach and tissues and help facilitate the toxins to move to the alimentary canal.


Pradhanakarma

Main treatment which is designed as per each individual's needs.


Paschatkarma

Post treatment care includes the diet regimen and the other dos and don'ts. 'Pancha' means 'five' and 'karma' means 'action.' This five-fold purification therapy aims at correcting the imbalance of the doshas - Vata, Pitta, Kapha in order to maintain their inherent equilibrium. During each season of the year, one or more of the doshas accumulate, which causes an imbalance and makes the body prone to illness. It involves five cleansing procedures:


Panchakarma Treatments


Vamana

Inducing vomiting specially for kapha related illnesses like asthma, coughs, chronic colds, psoriasis, acne, arthritis, diabetes and other kapha disorders. This is a painless, drug-induced emetic process.


Virechana

Inducing purgation specially for elimination of Pita related toxins from the body. Here, drugs that stimulate bowel movements are induced for the expulsion of excess Pita.


Rakthamoshana

To remove impurities from the blood through leech therapy or other methods. This 5-fold treatment during Panchakarma has not only been intended for elimination of disease-causing toxins but also to replenish the tissues with nourishment. This is why it is often termed as Rejuvenation Therapy. This therapy also combats neurological ailments like paralysis, arthritis, rheumatism, dermatological problems, and mental disorders.


Vasti

Medicated enema is particularly good for alleviating excess Vata. Vasti's effects are directly felt in the colon, the prime abode of the Vata. With the application of a series of purifying and nourishing Vastis, the morbid doshas and other toxins trapped for long in the tissues are eliminated. This restores the equilibrium of the humours. Vasti is good for spleen disorders, colic, calculus, kidney stones and many other diseases due to a Vata disorder. It helps in chronic constipation, low back pain, rheumatoid arthritis, obesity, sciatica, various neurological disorders like multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, dystrophy and atrophy of nerves and muscles. - Sneha Vasti - enema using medicated oil which remains in the colon and rectum for a short period of time to absorb the toxins and eliminate them out of the body.


Elakkizhi (Bundle Medicinal leaves/herbs)

It is a type of swedana (sudation) treatment for the entire body or any specific part of the body. In this treatment medicinal leaves are cut into small pieces and processed in medicated oils and then applied externally in the form of boluses tied up in muslin bag, dipping it in warm medicated oils. This is done for 45 minutes daily for a period of 7 to 14 days. Finely powdered medicinal herbs are used. This treatment has shown remarkable effect in chronic back pain, rheumatic complaints, Arthritis, paralysis, pain and swelling in the joints and emaciation of limbs. This treatment stimulates and strengthens the nervous and muscular systems, increases the circulation and metabolic rate, reduces stiffness and pain, and improves the skin tone.


Njavarakkizhi (Bundle of Special Rice Porridge)

After applying the medicated oil over the whole body or any specific part, the next procedure that follows is the extraction of medicinal rice (Njavarayari) and the root of Sida Retusa (kurumthotti) that are processed with milk and made in the form of paste and then massaged over the whole body or any specific part. This is done for 60 to 90 minutes daily for 7 to 14 days. This treatment aims to strengthen the nerves and muscles. It also purifies blood and is beneficial for all types of rheumatism, joint pain, emaciation of limbs, high blood pressure, cholesterol, paralysis, sciatica, and certain kinds of skin diseases. It improves general body strength, skin tone and complexion.


Pizhichil (Pouring of Oil)

This is a therapeutic process in which lukewarm medicated oil is poured all over the body in a uniform rhythmic way continuously in specific direction along with gentle massages for 60 to 90 minutes daily for 07 to 21 days. This treatment renders for rheumatic ailments like arthritis, paralysis, weakness of muscular and nervous systems and sexual weakness.


Sirovasti (Retaining of oil on head)

Medicated lukewarm oil is allowed to retain over the head for about an hour with the help of a leather cap fitted around the head. This treatment is renowned for its effectiveness in facial paralysis, cataract, deafness, earache, chronic headache, insomnia, psychosomatic stress and other diseases that affect the cranial nerves. It also stimulates the nervous system and promotes mental prowess.


Sirodhara (Flow on head)

"Sirodhara" literally means continuous flow (dhara) on the head (sira). Just as the root forms the base of a plant so also in Ayurveda the head is considered the root of the body. Therefore, Sirodhara is of utmost importance in any Ayurvedic treatment. Medicated oil, medicated butter milk, herbal extract etc. are allowed to flow as a continuous stream over the upper part of the forehead along with gentle massage over the scalp, this stimulates the pineal gland in the brain which produces serotonin and melatonin (hormones). These hormones have an important role in each person's emotional balance. The treatment lasts for 30-45 minutes daily for a period of 7 to 21 days. It is highly effective for diseases of the nervous system and for emotional problems such as chronic depression, insomnia, loss of memory and anxiety (panic) attacks. Ayurveda also recommends it for chronic headaches, as well as ear, nose and throat problems. It is especially useful for mental relaxation.


Nasya (Nasal Cleansing)

Administration of medicated oil, herbal juice or other medicated formulations to the nostrils after the proper application of medicated oil and fomentation of the face keeping the eyes protected from the heat applying during fomentation. Nasyam helps to evacuate accumulated elements in the nasal sinuses. It stimulates neuro hormonal centres, enhances the function of eyes, nose, ears, induces sound sleep and strengthens the neck and shoulder. It is very effective in the treatment of Sinusitis, Nasal congestion, Dental Problem, Ear and Eye Diseases, Facial Paralysis, Migraine and cervical degeneration.


Abhyangam (General Body Massage)

Abhyangam is the general body massage in Ayurveda using medicated oils on a daily basis as a part of lifestyle to ease pain and reduce fluid accumulation, aiding the removal of toxic accumulation. This treatment is done normally for 45 to 60 minutes daily for 07 to 21 days. It is a very effective rejuvenation therapy which improves circulation, cellular regeneration, immuno-modulation and sound sleep. It is a very effective treatment in rheumatic complaints, stiffness of joints, spondylosis, spondylitis, back pain, sports injuries, frozen shoulders, etc.


Karnapooranam (Ear Cleaning)

Application of medicated oil in the ear canal is effective in the infective pathologies of the ear. It improves the sound perception with clarity.


Greeva Vasti/Kati Vasti/Uro Vasti (Oil Retention in body areas)

Retention of lukewarm medicated oils in a leak proof boundary made up of green gram powder paste over the upper back-cervical (Greeva Vasti) in the lower back – lumber (Kati Vasti) and in the upper middle of the chest – thorax (Uro vasti) is beneficial in localised and radiating pain of different nature.

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