Almost every person has experienced pain in a body part at some point in life. When the pain goes away on its own, it is often ignored. However, when the pain recurs regularly or appears as chronic pain, it is important to find the root cause of the pain and to treat it without delay. Chronic pain may be a result of aging, injury/damage to the muscles, ligaments or tissues, or the nervous system. If left untreated, the pain could escalate and cause discomfort, stiffness, and soreness and disrupt the daily body cycle leading to fatigue, loss of sleep, and depression.
Ayurveda adopts a holistic approach to treating the ailments of the body. It classifies life energy into Kapha, Pitta, and Vata doshas. Every person has all three doshas in various combinations. In people who have higher vata dosha, the likelihood of developing ailments related to the heart and skin, constipation, rheumatoid arthritis, and back/joint pain is said to be much higher. Ayurvedic medicine for vata dosha is administered as herbal decoctions, massage therapies to improve blood circulation and reduce stiffness of joints, and lifestyle modifications. Seeking vata dosha remedies can help the person improve their flexibility and body movements and increase their energy levels. Ayurvedic formulations like Dhanwantararishtam (a versatile combination of herbal drugs with distinct ‘vata-hara’ properties), Balarishtam (a traditional Ayurvedic recipe that nourishes and stabilizes the body by balancing the Vata, Pitta, and Kapha elements in the body),
A person may develop poor blood circulation due to their age, atherosclerosis (due to high triglycerides), obesity, diabetes, inactive lifestyle, and smoking, among other reasons. Poor blood circulation can be a cause of chronic pain, restless legs, and feet, dry skin, brittle nails, severe hair fall, pain and swelling in the knee, swollen feet and ankles.
Simple dietary changes and the introduction of common foods and spices like pomegranate, beetroot, cinnamon, garlic, and onions can help in the purification of blood and reduce triglycerides. Adopting a more active lifestyle with regular exercise is beneficial in improving blood circulation and reducing swelling of feet. Ayurvedic medication <> can also help to regulate the flow of blood in the body and provide relief from pain. Ayurveda is also beneficial in anal fissure treatment and external hemorrhoids treatment, which may have resulted from constipation and abdominal bloating. Ayurvedic oils like Murivenna oil, with the healing properties of Moringa leaves, Indian shallots, Indian beech, and Aloe vera, are well known. Murivenna oil benefits the body by helping to manage all kinds of trauma including sprains, strains, fractures, dislocations, and burns and is a tried and tested remedy for relieving pain and inflammation in Haemorrhoids, Fistula, and Fissure. Gulgulwasavam is a potent asava preparation that harnesses the potent ‘anti-inflammatory and ‘fat-burning properties of Gulgulu to provide relief from inflammatory pain. Karaskara Ghrutham is a potent nervine formula that heals and nourishes the affected joints and prevents further degeneration. Rasnathamalakyadi Kashaya helps in the management of inflammatory pain and swelling in rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, cervical and lumbar spondylitis, bursitis, diffuse joint pain, etc. Ashtavargam Kashaya consists of eight prime ‘vata-hara’ drugs that help to manage inflammatory pain and swelling in rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, cervical and lumbar spondylitis, bursitis, diffuse joint pain, etc.
Muscle cramps are caused due to excessive stretching of the muscles/ligaments in a joint and can occur at any age. The common causes of muscle cramps include dehydration, strain/exertion, imbalance of electrolytes like sodium, calcium, potassium, or magnesium, or poor blood circulation. The use of Ayurveda for muscle cramps treatment helps the person to get muscular pain relief for a longer period of time than the topical application of ointments or creams.
Abhyanga or ayurvedic massage is beneficial not only for relief from pain and inflammation in bones and joints but as a way to prevent pain by pacifying aggravated doshas and maintaining balance, increasing blood flow, regulating body temperature, strengthening the muscles in the body, draining accumulated toxins from the body and to provide rejuvenation. The massages provide natural pain relief and are extensively used for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, frozen shoulder treatment, and relieving neck pain and stiffness.
Karpooradi tailam is ideal for the winter months when the ‘Vata’ element is aggravated in the body and manifests as aches, pains, and rigidity all over the body. Saplint Plus Linimint helps provide relief from arthralgia, sprains, and strains, low backache, cervical and lumbar spondylitis, sciatica sports injury, frozen shoulder, etc. In conditions like Muscular Dystrophy where the muscles weaken to an extent that they eventually render a person unable to walk or move accurately, Ayurveda has been able to provide effective treatment for muscle weakness in the legs. Panchakarma therapies, Abhyangam, Navarakizhi, and other ayurvedic treatments can help in muscle growth, which can allow the person to have a better quality of life – though it is not possible to cure muscle dystrophy completely.
Ayurveda also advocates simple lifestyle changes and making exercise a regular part of your daily routine to prevent strain to the muscles and for relief from pain. Keeping the muscle in motion can help to lessen pain and reduce the incidence of blood clots, especially in the legs. Exercising also helps in the reduction of stress and improving mental health, which in turn helps to calm the body and provide pain relief.