This is specially done after the shodhana therapy and in mild vitiation of doshas. Herbal medicines are used internally and externally to correct the derangement of functions of Doshas, Dhatus, Malas and Agni and also to increase body immunity. The restoration of normality is brought about without any elimination
Before the actual operation of purification begins, there is a need to prepare the body in prescribed methods to encourage the body to let go of the toxins. The two procedures are ‘snehan’ and ‘swedan’. Snehan is the oil massage. Oil is applied to the entire body? which helps the toxins to move towards the gastro-intestinal tract. Oil massage also makes the superficial and deep tissues soft and supple. Medicated oil and ghees are also given internally which are capable of softening of doshas. Snehan is given daily for three to seven days, as indicated. Swedan is sudation or sweating and is given every day immediately following the snehan. Steam of herbal decoctions is added to further loosen the toxins from the individual. Swedan liquefies the toxins and increases the movement of toxins into the gastro-intestinal tract. After three to seven days of snehan and swedan, the doshas become well “ripened”. A particular Panchkarma method is then given according to the individual’s constitution and disorder, Prakriti and vikriti, respectively.
Five Basic Shodhanas: Cleansing Methods
- Vaman: Therapeutic vomiting or emesis
- Virechan : Therapeutic purgation
- Basti: Medicated enema
- Nasya: Elimination of toxins through the nose
- Raktmokshana: Blood Letting
Vaman: Emesis Therapy
When there is congestion in the lungs causing repeated attacks of bronchitis, colds, cough or asthma, the Ayurvedic treatment is therapeutic emesis or vaman to eliminate the vitiated kapha causing the excess mucus. First, after the snehan and swedan, i.e the preparation of the patient, the emetic drugs which are specified for specific diseases are administered and vomiting is induced. Once the mucus is released the patient will feel instantly relieved. It is likely that congestion, wheezing and breathlessness will disappear and that the sinuses will become clear. Therapeutic vomiting is also indicated in chronic asthma, diabetes, chronic cold, lymphatic congestion, chronic indigestion, chronic skin disorders like extensive dermatitis psoriasis etc and edema.
Madan-emetic nut, Madhuka-Yastimadhu-Licorice, Neem-bitter leaf, Bimbi, Kutaj-kurchi- Conessi bark, Murva clematis, Triloba-devdaru-deodar, Rock Salt, Ela-cardamom, Vacha, honey etc used according to the nature of the patient and the diseases he is suffering from.
Indications for Vaman:
Used for all kapha type disorders like headache, dizziness, nausea, Psychiatric problems, respiratory congestion, bronchitis, chronic cold, sinus congestion, asthma.
Virechan: Purgation Therapy :
When excess bile, pitta, is secreted and accumulated in the gall bladder, liver and small intestine, it tends to result in rashes, skin inflammation, acne, chronic attacks of fever, biliary vomiting, gastric and duodenal ulcers and jaundice. Ayurvedic literature suggests in these conditions, the administration of therapeutic purgation or a therapeutic laxative. Virechan is facilitated with senna leaves, flax seeds, Psyllium husks or Triphala, cows milk, castor oil etc in a combination that is appropriate for the individual person and the diseases the person is suffering from.
Indications for Virechan:
Allergic rash, Skin inflammation, Acne, Eczema, Chronic fever, Ascites, Biliary vomiting, Jaundice, Urinary disorder, Enlargement of the spleen, Intestinal worms, Burning sensation of eyes, conjunctivitis, gout, acid peptic disorders and psoriasis.