Asthma is a disease that forces people to live half their lives on medicines and relentless treatments. Ayurveda offers solutions for chronic illnesses and cures from the core. Let’s read the entire blog to know more.
What is Asthma?
Swasa, as mentioned in “Pranavaha Sroto Vikara” is a long-term non-communicable disease. The tightening of the muscles around the small airways in the lungs leads to problems like cough, cold, wheeze, and shortness of breath. While its symptoms are intermittent during exercise and at night, it triggers coming in contact with allergens like pollen, dust, smoke, grass, fur, feather, perfumes, strong smells, or change of weather.
Asthma caused due to Kapha and Pitta dosha can be recognized with symptoms like wheezing, coughing, irritability, and fever. Asthma caused due to Vata dosha can be acknowledged with symptoms like dry cough, anxiety, dry skin, thirst, constipation, and wheezing.
Types of Asthma
Ayurveda considers Asthma as a Shwas-rog that is divided into 5 different types including: Mahashwas (Dyspnoea major), Urdhwashwas (Expiratory Dyspnoea), Chhinnashwas (Chynestroke respiration), Tamakshwas (Bronchial Asthma), and Kshudrashwas (Dyspnoea minor).
Tamak is defined as ‘darkness’. The patient who’s suffering from Tamak Shwas experiences darkness due to heavy coughing (Kasa) and energy loss. As per the Ayurvedic scriptures, Tamak shwas is ‘Yapya’,i.e., manageable with medicinal support.
Tamak Shwas is further divided into two sub-parts as shown in the image below.
Cause of Asthma
Most people keep guessing how and when did they develop Asthma. It’s a chronic illness that can be developed either genetically, through the environment, or via a combination of both. Let’s know the reasons in detail.
- Common cold
- Weather change
- Airborne allergen, pollens, animal fur, dust mites, and etc.
- Certain medicines and therapies
- Preservatives, canned juices, processed beverages, and food
- Increased Vata dosha along with imbalance Pitta and Kapha
- Metabolic residue
- Family history of Tamak Shwas
- Excessive fasting
- Regular intake of cold curd and fermented food
- Weakened respiratory system,
Its Impact on Daily Life
Asthma is a chronic illness that can disrupt sufferers’ life. Due to constant breathing issues and coughing, It impacts the lives of many individuals drastically. There’s insomnia, tiredness in the day, and body aches due to persistent coughing. Asthma sufferers mostly face problems with concentration and attending work, school, or college regularly. Patients need to be in touch with their Ayurvedic doctors constantly in case of emergency.
Pathya (Do’s) & Apathya (Don’ts)
Treatment by Natural Herbs
One can use natural herbs and medicines to cure chronic conditions. If we peek into our box of spices that we use in our daily meals, we can find some of these herbs sitting right in the box. Some of them are mentioned below:-
- Black Raisins
One can make a herbal tea or combination of powders by mixing some of these herbs together to create an amazing remedy for all your respiratory problems.
Treatment of Asthma
As per Ayurveda, Asthma is caused due to the imbalance of Pitta and Kapha affected by Vata dosha.
Respiratory disorders affect the entire body forcing patients to live a life full of restrictions, medications, and precautions. Although दमा isn’t a curable disease, it can be controlled enough to allow the patient to live a free life with minimal medication. Ayurveda treats asthma with several medications and certain therapies. Some of them offer immediate benefits.
Snehan or Oleation is an Ayurvedic treatment, where medicated ghee or oils are administered either internally or externally.
During the Asthma attack (which is known as “Vega avastha”) – Oil mixed with Saindhav salt should be massaged on the chest and back followed by hot fomentation or steam. This helps in immediate relief of shwas.
During the “Avega avastha”(the period when the patient doesn’t have any cough or breathlessness)intake of vasa ghrita, yashtimadhu ghrita, bharngyadi, kantakari ghrit, narayan tel, bala tel can be taken only after consulting an Ayurvedic physician.
Swedana or hot fomentation/ steam helps liquefy excess ama and cough blocking the pranavaha srotas, it also soothes the lung tissues, thus eases the breathing process. In case of acute attacks, warm Mahanarayan taila coupled with salt is rubbed on the chest gently. It is followed by fomentation by vapors of dashmoola decoction.
Vamana is a procedure that eliminates ama and kapha accumulated in the body by inducing the emesis. It reduces the chances of Asthma attacks in the future.
Other medicines like sitopaladi churna, yashtimadhu churna, pippali churna, lavangadi churna, chousashta pippali, trikatu, Shwaskuthar rasa, kantakari avleha are taken with honey and ginger juice. These medicines are to be taken on a regular basis to prevent the formation of new kapha and also eliminate the aam and excess doshas from the body. These medicines along with regular snehan help to build immunity, strengthen the respiratory system, and prevent frequent asthma attacks.
Please note: Do consult an Ayurveda doctor before opting for any of the treatments. Asthmatic patients should be in touch with an Ayurvedic doctor at all times.
Dhoompan – Dhoomapan is the inhalation of medicated smoke, it opens up the clogged respiratory channels, expels out the accumulated cough, and also reduces the frequency of cough bouts and breathlessness.
Rasayan medicines – Rasayan medicines like Chyawanprash, Agastirasayan, pippali rasayan , amritprash ghrit are the medicines that not only strengthen but also improve the efficacy and immunity of the pranavaha srotas. These medicines are recommended after completing the general medicines recommended in vega and avega avastha.
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