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ARTHRITIS

CFAAR

The term arthritis covers a broad spectrum of disorders affecting the joints and surrounding structures. It is primarily characterized by pain and inflammation around the joint affected. A joint disorder is quite a big impairment since it can affect our daily activities and as a matter of fact, our mobility is dependent on joints. Thus taking good care of our joints, prevention of pathology in them and seeking proper management on affliction with a joint disorder is very important.

DIAGNOSIS

  • Physical examination of joints to check for inflammation, redness, rise of temperature, nodules etc
  • Blood tests to check complete blood count, ESR, RA factor, ASO, ANA antibodies, C-reactive protein etc as per the symptoms shown by the patient
  • X-ray of the joint helps to visualize the underlying pathology
  • MRI scanning also helps in diagnosis

AYURVEDIC PERSPECTIVE

Pathology to joints is called is called as Sandhigata vaatha in Ayurveda. Sandhi in Sanskrit means joint and vaatha is the causative factor for pain in joints. An aggravation of vaatha in Sandhi is therefore the basic pathology here. This can be associated with aggravation of other doshas also whereby symptoms like rise of temperature and stiffness may be associated. Oil and heat are pacifiers of vaatha dosha and hence used here. The condition can also be due to accumulation of aama or toxins produced in body due to failure of proper digestion. Aama can cause obstruction to the flow of vaatha and hence cause its aggravation. In such cases aama should be broken down and eliminated from body initially. The condition is then called as aamavaatha.

TREATMENT PROTOCOL

Samana Chikitsa or Pacification therapy

  • Indicated when the onset of joint disease is acute.
  • Internal administration of aama paachana medicines or medicines that can digest accumulated aama is used first. This will also reduce the inflammation associated with the condition.
  • External application of medicinal powder mixed in suitable liquid, converted into paste form, over the joint for a duration of 30 to 45 minutes, twice a day or as per the demand of the condition. This can be done for seven days. This procedure is called pichu and it significantly reduces underlying inflammation.
  • Internal medications that can specifically act on the joints are then given to remove the aggravation of These will reduce the pain and remove the pathology of the condition
  • External application of oil and steaming the area is very effective for pacifying vaatha which in turn reduces pain and increases mobility. The procedure is called as Abhyanga and Ooshma sweda
  • Pouring of warm medicated oil over the area for a fixed duration is also highly effective. The procedure is called as Depending upon the underlying pathology the medicines with which oil is processed is changed.
  • Bandaging the joint with medicinal paste for a fixed duration is also done which increases stability of the joint.

Sodhana Chikitsa or Elimination therapy

These therapies are indicated when the condition is chronic, significant accumulation of toxins in body is present and multiple joints are affected.

Cleansing the body by adopting suitable elimination techniques like emesis, purgation, enema etc are the procedures here. These will remove the underlying pathology completely and can prevent recurrence of the condition.

Vasthi or application of medicine through the rectum is specifically indicated here since vasthi is the best method to mitigate vaatha dosha.

Poorvakarmas

Prior to the administration of elimination therapies, certain procedures are done to ease the cleansing process. They are:

Kizhi: Application of medicine filled poultice all over body in a specific manner after heating them.

Pzhichil or kaaya seka: Pouring of medicated oil or any medicated liquid all over body in a specific manner along with light massage, for a fixed duration.

Dhaara: Medicated liquid or oil is poured all over body.

The following should be practiced both for easy recovery as well as for prevention of arthritis:

  • A healthy diet should be adopted; avoid excessively dry and too cold food items. Fresh homemade foods are always better. Weight must be monitored and care should be taken to keep weight within normal limits. Obesity increases the work load of the joints.
  • Regular exercise will keep the joints mobile and also tones the muscles supporting the joints. Hence exercise must be made a part of lifestyle.
  • Yoga is good for the mind and body, reduces stress and also boosts immunity.
  • Performing cleansing therapies periodically will remove the accumulated toxins in body

HOW WE CAN HELP

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