The intervertebral discs located between the vertebrae consists of two parts- Annulus Fibrosus (hard outer ring) and the Nucleus Pulposus (soft, gel-like inner part). The Annulus Fibrosus functions as a defensive shield safeguarding the inner part from shock, trauma, injury, and damage. However, with age, an injury, or accident can damage the protective outer ring. As a result, the soft Nucleus Pulposus prolapses or herniates trigger a condition known as Slipped Disc or Prolapsed Disc. Without timely medical attention, slip disc can restrict the movement of the lower half permanently.
A characteristic symptom of slipped disc is
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In most cases, the slipped disc takes place at L4-L5 (lumbar segment 4-5) and L5-S1 (sacral segment 1). This triggers a throbbing and excruciating pain, especially in S1 and L5 that gradually spreads down to the sciatic nerve. As a result, a person experiences weakness and numbness in one or at times both the legs. The pain also makes the bowel movement and urination extremely uncomfortable. People who smoke uncontrollably stand a higher chance of suffering from a slipped disc.
Ayurveda believes slipped disc is an outcome of
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As per Ayurveda, the vitiation of the Vata Dosha not only results in a slipped disc, it also severely impacts the normal functioning of the body with the build-up of Ama (toxins) in the body. Thus, to treat the condition, it is necessary to pacify the Vata Dosha along with a body detox using Ayurvedic herbs and formulations. Ayurveda may be time taking as the treatment works by eliminating the underlying factor(s) responsible for the diseased condition.
Panchakarma provides no relief from slipped disc
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In case of a slipped disc, Kati Basti (takes 7-21 days), a part of the panchakarma therapy works miraculously to alleviate the associated pain and discomfort. Black gram flour is used to make a compartment that is placed on the back (generally on the lower back) of the patient. Next, a concoction of Ayurvedic oils (Sesame Oil, Mahanarayan Oil, Balaswagandhadi Oil, Bala Oil, Nirgundi Oil) is poured over the compartment that helps to pacify the Vata Dosha. Before performing the Kati Basti, Sadhyo-Virechana (a kind of purgative that helps to clear the bowel) is given to the patient to enhance the effectiveness of Kati Basti by many folds.
During the Kati Basti therapy, a person is made to eat a Vata pacifying diet.
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Along with the therapy, special care should also be given to the diet. Foods that are cold, dry and stale will aggravate the Vata Dosha further and are best left avoided. Limit your intake of foods with a pungent or bitter taste. Include more berries, peach, avocado, sweet potato, pistachios, beet, papaya, orange, red lentils, to the diet. Apples, pomegranate, raisins, watermelons, figs, prunes, dates (dry), should, however, be avoided.