- by Arth - An Ayurvedic Health Center
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- Mar 27 2017
Arthritis - Prevention & Treatment
Arthritis in any form is becoming one of the world’s burning health related issue which is making a majority of those suffering crippled and dependent. We feel ourselves in a helpless condition when the joints of our body which help us in locomotion and enable us to accomplish all the activities throughout our lives give way. Living at the mercy and walking with support is what we don’t desire to happen at least in the middle and active part of our lives. It not only affects the individual suffering from it but also influences passively on all the dependents. Arthritis has its deadly influence on the socio-economic life and also the professional life of an individual. Moreover, the person will be morally lost.
World Arthritis Day is celebrated worldwide on 12th of October very year to tackle this problem and also to create the awareness regarding arthritis.
The Aims of World Arthritis Day are:
*To raise awareness of arthritis in all its forms among the medical community, people with arthritis and the general public
*To influence public policy by making decision-makers aware of the burden of arthritis and the steps which can be taken to ease it.
*To ensure all people with arthritis and their caregivers are aware of the vast support network available to them.
The theme for 2016 is “The Future In Your Hands”
Arthritis may be of several types including Inflammatory arthritis eg. Rheumatoid Arthritis, Degenerative Arthritis eg.Osteo-Arthritis, Crystal Arthritis eg. Gouty Arthritis etc. Whatever may be the form of arthritis they produce pain and disability.
The scientifically advancing and technologically sound world has been constantly working to free the mankind from the clutches of this unwanted sensation but still the disease takes a lead every time. On the occasion of the WORLD ARTHRITIS DAY (WAD), we need to pledge to declare a stronger war on Arthritis.
Arthritis is a medical condition wherein the patient suffers from joint pain, caused mostly due to damage to the joints. This condition is now increasingly common among youngsters too, as is the case with the elderly. Although treatment for arthritis is available in allopathy and homoeopathy and other systems of medicine, in recent times, however, Ayurveda is gaining immense popularity in the treatment of arthritis.
Ayurveda offers several alternatives for arthritis treatment. Several studies lately in the United States, India and other places have confirmed Ayurvedic treatment as the means to natural arthritic pain relief.
Arthritis and Ayurveda:
Arthritis is not a new concept for Ayurvedic science. Rather we can tell that Ayurveda is the first medical science to explain arthritis and other joint related problems.
Arthritis in Ayurveda is a disease involving the vitiated Vatadosha in one or the other form, though the other doshas-pitta and Kapha are also invariably involved being disturbed in varying proportions. The main dhatus afflicted are
- rasa–rakta (blood),
- mamsa (muscles, tendons, ligaments) and
- ashti (bone and joints).
When these tissues are afflicted by one or more of the above said doshas with the predominance of vata arthritis get manifested. Disturbed metabolism (agnidushti), circulating endo-toxins(ama), improper food and activities(mithyaahara and vihara) etc are also the chief causes. This indicates that most of arthritis according to Ayurveda have a systemic origin.
Types of Arthritis as per Ayurveda: Many conditions resembling various types of the modern day arthritis is available in the Ayurveda:
*Amavata: Where ama is involved along with vata to produce a picture resembling inflammatory arthritis with special mention of Rheumatoid Arthritis.
*SandhigataVata: Where the vitiated Vata enters the joints and occupies them causing swelling, pain etc. This condition indicates the explanation similar to degenerative arthritis w.s.r.t Osteo-Arthritis.
Vata-Rakta: Where the vitiated Vata along with the vitiated rakta produce painful conditions of the joints mimicking the picture of crystal arthritis w.s.r.t Gouty-Arthritis.
There are many other conditions explained but the above said are important ones. The notable feature is the mention of the word vata in common in all the conditions.
Treatment of Arthritis in Ayurveda:
The treatment of arthritis can be initiated only after understanding the ailment in detail (Nida napa Chaka) and after a thorough examination of the patient through Dashavidapariksah(10 fold examination of the patient), Trividha(3 fold examination) and Ashta Stana Pariksha(examination of 8 essential parameters). In general, the below said treatment can be implemented as per the type of the arthritis being dealt:
*Langhana (fasting and other forms of treatment which bring lightness in the body), Deepana(enhancing the digestive fire or improving the metabolism), Pachana (digesting the endotoxins and separating them from the association with morbid doshas) etc when ama is associated with the doshas in the pathogenesis of arthritis. Eg in Amavata
*Shodana (purificatory measures including panchakarma): In the form of:
- Virechana (purgation) – in all types of arthritis
- Basti (medicated enemas) – Kashaya vastis (decoction enemas) and teekshnavastis(strong enemas- evacuatory) in amavata, Ksheeravastis(medicated enemas prepared in milk base) in vatarakta, Anuvasana and matravastis (oil or ghee enemas) in sandhigatavata etc
3.Rakta mokshana (blood letting) – In vatarakta
- Snehapana – Intake of medicated oils and ghee – in amavata/sandhigatavata/vatarakta
*Sthanika Chikitsa(Local treatment):
- Janubasti (oil pooling around the knee joints in a chamber constructed around the joint using flour so as to accommodate oil) – in sandhigatavata
2.Patrapindasweda (sudation to the painful joint using medicated leaves tied in a cloth in the form of a bolus) – in sandhigatavata
- Shastikashalipindasweda (sudation to the painful joint using processed rice tied in a cloth in the form of bolus) – in sandhigatavata
- Lepa and Upanaha( anointments and poultices) – in all types of arthritis
- Abhyangam and swedana (massage and fomentation) – in sandhigatavata
- Vaalukasweda (sudation to the painful joint using heated sand tied in a cloth in the form of a bolus) – in amavata
- Parisheka (sprinkling or spraying medicated fluids) – in vatarakta
- Sandhi pichu (keeping a cotton pad dipped in medicated oil in contact with afflicted joint and wrapping it with a bandage to keep it in position) – in sandhigatavata
Arthritis is a lifestyle disease. We can avoid ourselves from being the victims of Arthritis when we follow a disciplined and planned approach towards our diet and way of living.
- Minimum exercises like walking, running, jogging, cycling etc can avoid arthritis from creeping in by strengthening the soft tissues and joints.
- Ayurveda too advocates regular Vyayama or exercises as an important part of lifestyle measures. Vyayama provides karma samartya (ability to do the work properly and uninterruptedly), deeptagni (regulation of digestive process and metabolism at the systemic and cellular levels), medasahakshaya(depletes fat stores and destroys excess fat- we know the direct relationship between obesity and arthritis), vibhakta gaatrata(good framework of the body) and ghana gaatrata(well-built proportional body).
- Ayurveda too emphasisesNityaAbhyanga or daily oil massage to the whole body. The joints require regular lubrication to keep working. Abhyanga rejuvenates the musculoskeletal system(jara hara), relieves exhaustion (sramahara) and subsidies vitiated vata.
- Apart from this, it enhances the eyesight (drishti prasada), gives strength to the muscles, soft tissues and joints (pushti), induces good sleep (swapna), improves colour and complexion of the skin(sutwak) and provides stability to the body (dhaardyakrit).
Come let us all join hands to fight this crippling disease. Let us all dream to live happily and move freely.
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