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SAMANA CHIKITHSA AND SODHANA CHIKITHSA
Shamana- Balancing Therapy
Literally the word Shamana means to suppress or balance. Incase the doshas are not deep rooted and the disease is not chronic these therapies are advised. On the other hand the elimination therapy is time taking and time is an important factor for curing ailments in this modern age. In Shamana therapies a special diet, contradictory to the qualities of the increased dosha is prescribed to the patient for suppressing or balancing the aggravated doshas.
Example: Cooling diet to decrease the Pitta dosha.
Different types of herbal powders, tablets, decoctions, jams, medicated oil or ghee are used in this type of treatment. It is a noticeable factor that in shamana therapies medicines are not always the way to cure but sometimes a very simple diet, or an activity can help to alleviate the aggravated dosha.
This type of therapy involves following types of activities to cure the ailment:
Exposure to sun or air
Shodhana- Elimination Therapy
When the diseases are chronic it is difficult to treat through the balancing methods of shaman therapy as it takes a lot of time. Here comes the role of the elimination therapy that takes less time and cure the diseases in which the doshas are situated at a much deeper level. Shodhana therapies expel the aggravated doshas from the body by the use of different types of elimination therapies called the Pancha Karma.
It involves the use of the following five types of cleansing techniques:
Vamana- emetic therapy (supervised vomiting)
Vasti- herbal enema
Nasya- nasal administration
Rakta Mokshana - blood letting
Some preparatory treatments are first induced in order to soften the dosha and move it to either the stomach or the intestine from where the dosha is eliminated using the above-mentioned techniques. Shodhana is also used as a preventive treatment to gain positive health.