What is Panchakarma ?
Panchakarma is a Sanskrit word. Pancha Means Five and Karma means treatment methods- Therapeutic measures the aim of Panch Karma Therapies is to purify and detoxify the body. It is done for both - Unhealthy person and Healthy person. It helps unhealthy person to get rid from many chronic diseases as well as it helps healthy person as preventive treatment to keep physically and mentally fit.
Ayurveda is more than a mere healing system, it is a science and art of appropriate living which helps to achieve longevity. Ayurveda emphasizes on preventive and healing therapies along with various methods of purification and rejuvenation. Ayurveda prescribes Panchakarma therapies for cleansing of body toxins. Panchakarma Therapies balances all Tridosha’s (Vata- Ether Plus Air, Pitta-Fire Plus Water and Kapha-Water Plus Earth- Three Bio Energies- Body Constitution).
Ayurveda Considers Panch Karma Necessary Before the start of any other Therapy. The logic being-as a cloth needs to be purified or cleanse of dust and impurities before it can be imparted a new colour. Similarly the body needs to be purified before it can be imparted new colours of youthfulness, Health and vigor etc.
Purvakarma-Pre Purification Measures for Panchakarma
This is done to prepare the body to encourage let go the toxins. There are two main procedures.
1. Snehana(Oleation, Internal and External) -
For External snehana – Abhyanga – medicated oil massage is prescribed. In Abhyanga body is massaged with different Ayurvedic oils which helps the toxins to move towards the gastro –intestinal tract. Abhyanga- massage removes stress and nourishes the nervous system. It makes the body tissues –both superficial and deep soft and supple, Snehana is given for 3 to 7 days daily. For internal Snehana some ayurvedic - Medicated Ghee (Ghritam) is given to take orally.
2. Swedana(Sweating) -
It is given daily immediately following the snehana-Abhyanga. In this steam added with herbal decoration given to the body to loosen the toxins from the individual. It liquefies the toxins and increases the movement of toxins in to the Gastro – Intestinal Tract.
Other miscellaneous therapies of Panchakarma
1. Sirodhara -
It is indicated in Insomnia, Hypertension, Anxiety, Depression and Headaches.
2. PindaSweda –
Useful in joint pains & in neurological problems.
3. Shasti-Shali-Pindasweda –
Useful in neurological problems.
4. Nadisweda –
Usefulpain in joints.
5. Kati-Vasti –
Useful in backache, slip disc, Prolapse or herniation of vertebras.
6. Januvasti –
useful in Osteo- Arthritis - knee joint pain.
7. Shirovasti –
Useful in problems related with brain, neurological disorders.
8. Uttaravasti –
Useful in Gynae problems, infertility, genitourinary problems.
9. Udwartanam –
Good for skin and weight loss.
10. Tarpanam –
Useful in the ailments of eyes.
11. Pizhichil (SarvangDhara) –
Useful in paralysis and other neurological problems, joint pains.
Paschata Karma - Post purification measures of Panchakarma
In this some changes in diet and life style is advised after main purification course. Some Ayurvedic internal medicines are also advised to be taken for different ailments for prescribed duration.