Managing Osteoarthritis (Arthritis) with Ayurveda
Osteoarthritis is the name given to the inflammation and stiffness of the joints, causing the cartilage around the ends of bones to be eroded over time. It is the most common form of arthritis, affecting millions worldwide. The condition can affect any joint in the body, including those found in the hip, knee, spine, thumb, neck and hand among many others. Whilst there is no cure for osteoarthritis, Ayurvedic medicine can be used to relieve the pain and symptoms of the condition. In this article, we’ll discuss the holistic approaches to managing osteoarthritis which Ayurvedic medicine provides.
Ayurveda and Osteoarthritis (Arthritis)
In Ayurveda, Osteoarthritis is known as Sandhigata Vata, but in our times, the Western and traditional terms are both used. Ayurvedic texts dictate that the signs and symptoms of Sandhigata Vata include:
- Shula (pain)
- Atopa (grating sounds created by the rubbing of joints)
- Shotha (swelling)
- Prasarana Akunchanayoho praviritti savedana (Painful movement of the joints, such as extension and flexion)
As the name suggests, Sandhigata Vata is characterised by high amounts of localised Vata energy. Ayurvedic medicine dictates that the catalysts for this influx of Vata levels may include:
- Vyayama (over-exercising)
- Apatarpana (excessive fasting)
- Vyavaya (excessive indulgence in sexual activities)
- Ruksha (excessive consumption of dry foods)
- Tikta (excessive consumption of bitter foods)
- Katu (excessive consumption of pungent foods)
- Kashaya (excessive consumption of astringent foods)
Therefore, it is important to maintain a balanced diet and to moderate your amount of sexual and physical activity in order to manage your osteoarthritis.
As osteoarthritis is usually hereditary, Ayurvedic medicine cannot provide preventative methods to guard against contracting the condition. However, Ayurvedic practitioners often prescribe internal remedies which may alleviate the pain associated with osteoarthritis as well as promote normal joint activity. These include Dashamula Kashayam, Devadaru Kashayam as well as sesame and cinnamon-based internal remedies. However, as Ayurvedic medicine is customised to each individual’s nuanced body type, it is essential that you consult an Ayurvedic doctor before producing these remedies in your own home. In this way, you’ll be able to find out the most effective prescription for your specific needs.
In addition to internal remedies, Ayurvedic massage is also used alleviate the pain associated with osteoarthritis and to rejuvenate the joints and muscles. Abhyanga full body massages have proven to be effective in these areas, and are offered at Ayurvedic Wellness Centre. In addition, our popular Pizzichil treatment has proven effective in balancing the vata levels associated with the condition, whilst also addressing the neck and head pains caused by some forms of osteoarthritis.
For more information about how we can help you to treat osteoarthritis at Ayurvedic Wellness Centre, or to book a consultation with one of our practitioners, please call us on (02) 9389 2581.