Skin is a vital part of human body’s health and wellbeing internally and externally. Being the largest organ in the body, all the parts and organs come under the roof of the skin. Skin helps us in sensing pain, different temperature and pressure.
Skin can be prone to have injuries both internally and externally that something is wrong inside the body which might be a result of lack of internal equilibrium. From Ayurvedic point of view, any diseases releated to skin are caused by imbalance of the tridosha in the body, and therefore its treatment focuses on balancing the dosha in the body which would bring harmony for the individual.
CAUSES OF SKIN DISEASES
Ayurveda has mentioned that the major cause for skin diseases is nidana sevana i.e improper diet and nidana vihara i.e improper lifestyle. The ahara or vihara that goes against ur prakruthi i.e ur inbuilt nature there will be imbalance in the doshas giving rise to the twak vikaras. The imbalance can be related to any of the tridoshas and might even be a combination of any two doshas. For example, if it is associated with Pitta dosha, any ahara, vihara that increases the fire or heat element in the deha aggravates the pitta dosha leading to pitta dominant twak vikara i.e skin problems.
Ayurveda states that dysfunction of the liver associated with imbalance of doshas leads to skin diseases. The accumulation of ama in the yakrut breaks/comes out through the twak.
SOME OF THE SKIN CONDITIONS MENTIONED IN AYURVEDA –
- Skin cancer, psoriasis, dermatitis and atopic eczema
- any persistent rash or itch
- skin allergies
- skin discolouration, static or changing
- acne, rosacea and other common inflammatory skin conditions
- stubborn acne or acne scars
- bacterial, fungal and viral skin infections
- Acne: Breakout on the skin can occur in the form of whiteheads, blackheads, pimples, or cysts. If not treated properly and on time it can leave scars.
- Hives: This is an allergic condition causing severe itching and red bumps on the skin surface.
- Rosacea: This condition can be chronic. It makes skin very dry and red.
- Eczema: It is a skin condition that causes itching, redness, and causes flaking of the skin. It can be a chronic condition.
- Psoriasis: This disease leads to silvery skin patches that are scaly. There will be itching sensation in the scalp region, elbow and knees (these are the common areas)
- Contact dermatitis: This occurs due to allergies. It causes severe rashes. Here blisters might be formed that oozes fluid.
Types of skin diseases
According to Acharya Charaka and Acharya Sushrutha Kusta is mainly divided into 2 types which are again subdivided into 7 & 11 types.
1) Mahakustha (Major skin diseases) – 7 types
2) Kshudrakustha (Minor skin diseases) – 11 types
The classification of these kusta is based on the predominance of the dosha and the futher treatment is also based on the same
· Vata dosha predominance of kusta which affects the skin becomes dry, rough, severe pain, pricking sensation, squeezing sensation and will be black or grey in colour.
· Pitta dosha predominant kusta which affects the skin suffers from burning sensation, red discolouration, foul smell, diseasesof eye and silmy in nature.
· Kapha predominant kusta which affects the skin suffers from itching, coldness around the infected wound and is white in colour.
If there is dominance of more than one dosha then the symtoms would also appear as same.
Home remedies for skin diseases
Intake diet having Katu (Pungent), Tikta (Bitter) & Kashaya (Astringent taste) and intake of food that is laghu in nature (light to digest).
1) Cow’s milk – 200 ml + Turmeric powder – 1 pinch
2) Buttermilk – 200 ml + cumin seed powder – ¼ teaspoon
3) Boiled hot water for drinking
4) Grains – Roasted rice, Barley
5) Beans – Green gram, Red lentil
6) Vegetables- Green leafy vegetables, carrot, pumpkin, garlic
7) Condiments – Turmeric, Coriander seeds & leaves, Black
Diet having Madhura (Sweet), Amla (Sour) & Lavana (Salty taste) & the intake of food that is Guru in nature (so that the digestion process is slowed)
1) Chilled water, cold drinks
2) Buffalo milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Paneer
4) Excessive salt, salty food like ruffles
5) Excessive sour things like Vinegar, Sauce
6) Food which is excessively sweet in nature. Ex – chocolates
7) Black gram, Kidney bean, Horse gram
8) Chilli, Capsicum
9) Cucumber, Tomato
10) Banana, sour fruits, fruit salad
Home remedies –
1) Applying turmeric powder on skin diseases.
2) If there is redness and itching sensation, then apple turmeric paste on that particular area
3) If infection and itching then use fresh Neem leaves paste instead.
4) Sandal wood paste would act best in the conditions of Burning sensation of the skin.
5) In case of excessive sweating and itching sensation then apply Cumin seed powder paste.
Ayurved describes 2 modalities of treatment –
1) Shodhana Chikitsa (Eliminating treatment)
2) Shamana Chikitsa (Palliative treatment)
In Shamana chikitsa, Dosha are brought back to normal equilibrium through different oral medications.
In Shodhana chikitsa, the imbalanced Doshas are eliminated out of the body through nearest route. Thus temporary or complete removal of the doshas is possible in this procedure.
Shodhana chikitsa is basically Panchakarma i.e the 5 procedures
1) Vamana – Emesis
2) Virechana – Purgative
3) Basti – Medicated enema
4) Nasya – Nasal administration
5) Raktamokshana – Bloodletting
Ayurvedic Supplements for Skin Diseases
Ayurveda offers a number of supplements for skincare. Some of the prominent supplements include:
- Nalpamaradi Keram: This is an oil that is made from different species of the fig tree. It helps improve skin health. It is helpful in managing skin infections. It is used in the conditions of eczema.
- Winsoria oil: This Ayurvedic medicine for skin infection is one of the most helpful supplements for psoriasis. Symptoms like burning sensation, allergy, itching and discoloration can be managed by using this oil.
- Nimbadi Kwath: This is an Ayurvedic supplement that has antimicrobial properties. It helps to improve skin health. One of the best drug to apply during inflammation of the skin as it is anti-inflammatory drug.
- Kumkumadi Oil: Kumkumadi oil is a well-known skin care product that helps improve skin complexion. It can be very helpful as it can remove pimples and aches and also removes itching sensation.
- Mahathikthakam Ghrita: This is a capsule prepared from herbalised ghee. It is helpful in managing eczema.
Ayurveda is a holistic system for help in the management of skin disorders and diseases. Ayurveda uses the traditional way of approach to cure the skin diesases. Ayurvedic herbal remedies are sourced from nature. The supplements are safe as they are natural. They are gentle on the body and suit any type of skin. The supplements or the ingredients that we intake not only gives a solution for the particular disease but also tries to even remove the root cause of the problem.