The name Psoriasis is from the Greek language, meaning roughly “itching condition” (psora “itch” + -sis “action, condition”).
According to modern science, Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes raised, red, scaly patches to appear on the skin. It typically affects the outside of the elbows, knees or scalp, though it can appear in any location.
In Ayurveda, all skin diseases are named under ‘Kusta‘. The literal meaning of kusta is that which changes the normal skin to an abnormal state.
When skin diseases are not treated in time or if ignored it will spread all over the body quickly.
The exact cause of Psoriasis is unknown, but it is believed that a combination of several factors contributes to the development of this disease. In Ayurveda, there are specific causative factors which will responsible for the initiation of skin disease.
Pathogenesis according to Ayurveda:
- Accumulation of causative factors by the improper food habits, consumption of incompatible food, causing harm to good people, Killing any living being, Stealing, by doing bad things, deeds done in past life etc…
- Vitiation of Doshas takes place and the aggravated doshas start circulating all over the body through sira’s
- Then these vitiate Twacha, Lasika, Rakta, Mamsa dhatu’s making them weak.
- Then it pulls out theses producing discoloration in the skin is called kusta.
- Plaque Psoriasis
Plaque psoriasis is the most common form of the disease and appears as raised, red patches covered with a silvery white buildup of dead skin cells or scale. These patches or plaques most often appear on the scalp, knees, elbows and lower back. They are often itchy and painful, and they can crack and bleed.
Psoriasis can show up anywhere—on the eyelids, ears, mouth and lips, skin folds, hands and feet, and nails. The skin at each of these sites is different and requires different treatments
Health Conditions Associated with Psoriasis
- Psoriatic Arthritis:
- Cardiovascular Disease
- other conditions
Other comorbidities associated with psoriasis include cancer, obesity, metabolic syndrome and other immune-related conditions such as Crohn’s disease.
Ayurvedic Treatment for Psoriasis:
The skin diseases are considered difficult to treat because of its complex nature and given much importance to the repeated Shodana (bio purification). Emphasising the importance to Shodana(bio purification) indicates that the to correct the cells abnormal behaviour is only possible when the body becomes completely free from toxins.
It’s evident that Ayurveda works wonder when it comes to most of the chronic and repeated skin problems and even in psoriasis. This is because its approach is holistic rather than merely treating the disease. Any disease which manifests docent have a single cause and it’s multidimensional with co-factors, so the healing should also be a multidimensional approach.
Ayurveda works in a very simple way where the suitable panchakarma therapies will help to eliminate the accumulated causative factors from the body. After cleansing depending on the condition step by step medicines both internal administration and external applications are advised to correct the physiological functions of the body.
The mind plays a vital role in the healing process as thoughts directly act on the cells to be healthy or unhealthy. Tuning the mind to produce healthy cells and staying in a positive mindset are also essential.
Coming to food, it is the real medicine when you are sick. The health depends mostly on the food what we eat because for the cells needs the energy to perform its function normally. If we choose to be ignorant about the food there will be short of the needed fuel to cells to function along with the accumulation of undigested food starts accumulating as toxins which tend to impair health.
Following specified daily regimen will boost the process of healing like physical exercise, etc….
Special Psoriasis treatments:
- Lepanam (application of external medicines),
- Abhyanga (oil massage),
- Snehapanam (intake of medicated ghee or oil),
- Vamana (Therapeutic induction of emesis)
- Virechana (Therapeutic induction of purgation)
- Raktamokshana ( Therapeutic blood letting)
- Nasya ( Therapeutic nasal medication)
- Pizhichil (pouring medicated oil over body),
- Swedana (medicated steam bath),
- Sirovasti (keeping oil on head)
- Dhara ( dripping of medicated liquids)
- Udwartana (Powder Massage)
Pathya (advised for intake)
- Yava (Barkley-Hordeum vulgare)
- Godhuma (Wheat- Tritcum asstivum)
- Koradusha(Paspakum scrobiculatum)
- Priyangu (Paspalum scrobiculatum)
- Mudga(Green gram-Vigna radiate)
- Masura(Lentil-Lens culinaris)
- Asava & Arista(wine laced with medicinal drugs)
Apathya (Should avoid)
One should avoid
- Amla (sour substances)
- Lavana ( Salt)
- Katu (Pungent)
- Dadhi (Curd)
- Dugda (Milk)
- Guda (Jaggery)
- Anoopadesha mamsa (meat of animals which are from marshy lands)
- Thila (Seaseme)
- Masha (Balck gram)