Physiological section – Ayurveda – Rich history

Ayurveda is an ancient tradition of health care from Indian Medicine. The literal meaning in Sanskrit is Ayur – life and Veda – knowledge. Ayurveda has been discovered before 5000 years ago which was coined by Charak, who is also known as Father or Ayurveda(Indian Medicine).  Charaka’s renowned work that is “Charak Samhita” is also known as an encyclopedia of Ayurveda.

Ayurvedic texts or scripts are written in 2 halves first 3 classics and lesser 3 classics. The very first half of Ayurvedic are written by 3 great scholars namely Charak Samhita, Sushruta Samhita, and Ashtanga Hridayam Sangraha.

Charak Samhita –mainly focuses or curing illness like the diagnosis of diseases. There are nearly 10,000 medicinal herbs and its uses are described in Charaka’s work.

Sushruta Samhita –mainly composed of surgeries in Ayurveda. His work describes 1,120 body illnesses, different types of operating methods, and different kind of instrument needs to operate it, nearly 121 types, and also 650differnt kinds of medicines derived from plants, animals and natural sources such as minerals.

Ashtanga Hridayam Sangraha –This book includes internal medicine that is Kayachikitsa. Doshas of the body and its features were explained in detail.

In the second half, three lesser classics of Ayurveda which is known as Sharngadhara Samhita, Bhava Prakasha, and Madhava Nidanam.  Sharngadhara Samhita – it mainly focuses on Panchkarma and pharmacology used for it also discovered how to diagnose patient’s health through pulses.  Bhava Prakasha –Deals more with Kayachikitsa.  Madhava Nidanam – mainly focuses on diseases related to women and children also into toxicology and ENT (ear, nose, and throat).

Ayurveda – one of the important milestone in Indian health care system which influences both the ends of the World. Ayurveda was translated into the Chinese language by their scholars; it also reached to Greece and western countries which helped evolved medicine.

But this golden era of Ayurveda under strike with the invasion of foreigners in India. With Islamic invasions from Turkey and Afghanistan, both the culture mixed and thus the infiltration of customs and traditions bought decline in Ayurveda. Islamic invaders started anti-Hinduism and also destroyed many kinds of literature and also damaged and destroyed the culture.  With the combination of Arabic medicine and Ayurveda made a new stream of medicine which is called as UNANI in today’s world. By the conquest of British rule, Ayurveda was at its still. British stopped Ayurvedic medicine and promoted western way of treatment for diseases, they destroyed a lot many books of Ayurveda. But after Independence again Ayurvedic studies were promoted, many colleges were built, education and practice were promoted. In the modern age, Ayurveda continues its legacy as alternative and holistic medicine.

Concepts of Ayurveda–so Ayurveda basically works on a principle which states that mind and body are connected to each other and mind have the ability to heal the whole body. Ayurvedic practitioners treat his/her patient after understanding the Dosha of a particular body. They say there is a specific treatment for the particular time of illness or imbalance in the body. As the body with different Doshas will react differently to the given treatment thus it is very important to know about the type first.

Doshas –the three fundamentals of the body are Vata, Pitta, Kapha, they are considered to control a person’s physiological conditions. Vata – a person having this kind of dosha will reflect mental qualities of elements such as air and space; that is why these people are very quick in thinking, dynamic and controls nervous system. Pitta – these types of people reflects the abilities of fire and water, they general governs the biochemical process and digestive problems. Kapha –Reflects ability such as water and earth, they have the balance on body fluids and are predominant. When all these doshas are in balance a person is fit and fine but the moment they are imbalanced person’s body gets disturbed that leads to entropy in the body thus ayurvedic practitioner helps to balance these doshas.

Branches of Ayurveda –There are different branches of Ayurveda which cover a different part of the sections for the betterment of life.

  • Kayachikitsa (Internal Medicine) –this branch can also be said to be internal medicine which covers complete body. Medications can be given orally or externally.
  • Bala Chikitsa (pediatrician) – this branch mainly deals with children health. Medications given are generally pleasant in taste so that children can have it easily.
  • Graha chikitsa (Psychiatry) – this branch mainly deals with the problems related to mental health. Medication can be yoga, deep breathing, chanting mantras or also oral medicines.
  • Urdhyaanga Chikitsa (E.N.T.)–This branch deals with the treatment of E.N.T. that is Ear, Nose Throat.
  • Shalyaroga Chikitsa (Surgery) – This branch deals with surgical procedures.
  • Shalyaroga Chikitsa (Toxicology) –This branch deals with the removal or treatment of the toxic in the body food etc.
  • Jara Chikitsa (geriatric)–This branch of Ayurveda deals with the treatment of Old age. There are different problems related to old age, this branch deals with almost all the problems.
  • Vajjikaran Chikitsa (reproductive health)–This branch deals with sexual health problems and reproductive health which also includes treatment such as infertility.

Ayurveda can be considered as the Ocean of knowledge; here my efforts are just to introduce you all with this great health care stream. Ayurveda not only balances your body from external changes but also by understanding your body needs it eradicates the root cause of the problem of the body. Thus this great branch of medical sciences brings balance and peace in one’s life.

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