Ayurvedic Treatment For Parkinson's disease

Cost of Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinson's Disease
1,300 - 2,300 (USD)
21 Days in Hospital
21 Days in India
Cost of Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinson's Disease
1,300 - 2,300 (USD)
21 Days in Hospital
21 Days in India
  • Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder
  • More than 10 million people worldwide are affected by Parkinson's disease
  • Men are more likely to have PD than women
  • Estimated 4% of Parkinson's cases are with people below 50
  • China has the largest number of Parkinson's cases in the world

All about Parkinson's disease

This article has been reviewed and approved by Dr Sajith Varma for authenticity and medical correctness on 10 Mar 2020

Parkinson's disease (or PD) is a neurodegenerative disorder. It affects the movements of your body. People above 50 years are more at risk. It usually starts with a slight tremor in your hand. After that, you will soon feel stiffness and slowing of movements.

Ayurveda refers to PD as "Kampa Vata".

While there is no complete cure, Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinson's disease can be highly effective.

The main aim is to control the symptoms, slow the progression, and to improve the quality of life. Oil massage(Snehana), hot packs (Swedana), and enema (Vasti) are part of the main treatment. 

Cause of Parkinson's disease

Doctors have not found the reason for this so far.

However, a good indicator is a drop in dopamine levels in the brain. Dopamine is a chemical produced by nerve cells in the brain. It is a transmitter that sends signals between the brain and other parts of the body.

When the nerve cells in the brain deteriorate, they stop producing dopamine. It severely impacts the movement of muscles in the body as there is no signal from the brain.

The presence of Lewy bodies, an abnormal mass of proteins in the brain, is another sign of PD.

Main Risk factors for Parkinson's disease

Some of these points increase the risk of PD

  • Age: People above 50 years are more at risk. 
  • Family history: Having a close relative with PD 
  • Gender: Men are more prone than women
  • Toxins: Regular exposure to pesticides and industrial waste 
  • Severe head injury: Such injuries can also be a cause

Signs and Symptoms of Parkinson's disease

Symptoms may not be visible at first. It is also possible that they vary from person to person. Some of the common ones are

  • Tremor: It usually begins in one hand, even when at rest. Involuntary rubbing of thumb and forefinger together is another sign.
  • Slow movements(Bradykinesia):  You will have difficulty in getting up from the chair. Your steps will be shorter, and you start dragging the feet while walking.
  • Rigid muscles: You will feel a stiffness in the legs and arms which causes pain and also limits movement
  • Posture: Your posture may change. Stooping and changes in walking patterns can also happen.
  • Movements: You may feel a loss of reflex actions like blinking and smiling.
  • Speech: Your speech will become slurred, slow, and low. You will start speaking in monotone
  • Handwriting(Micrographia):  Your writing becomes small and cramped 

Diagnosis of Parkinson's disease

There are no specific tests to detect PD. Doctors rely on medical history and a review of symptoms.

Stages of Parkinson's disease

As PD is a progressive disorder, the signs and symptoms develop and worsen over time. PD has five stages as detailed below

Stage 1: This is the initial stage where the impact is mild, and symptoms are difficult to diagnose. You may experience tremors in one hand, and there may be minor changes in posture. However, you will be fully independent to carry out all daily tasks.

Stage 2: The impact is still mild, but signs are now clear. Tremors would start appearing on both sides. Your posture may stoop, and you may have problems while walking. You can still carry out daily activities without support. However, you may notice that tasks are taking longer than usual.

It may take weeks or months to progress from stage 1 to 2.

Stage 3: Slow movements become common. Loss of balance is another issue, and falls could be frequent while walking. You can still carry out tasks without support, but with more effort.

Stage 4: Stage 4 is critical as the condition has now become severe. There will be restrictions on movement. You will now need help with your daily activities.

Stage 5: In this stage, the person will be in bed all the time and needs support.

Complications of Parkinson's disease

PD may also cause other complications such as 

  • Depression: Issues with PD can lead to depression and anxiety.
  • Difficulty in eating: Some people find it hard to swallow food. It leads to excess saliva in the mouth and drooling.
  • Sleep disorders: These are very common with PD.
  • Pain: Some experience severe pain all over the body 
  • Lower sex drive: This is another common issue with PD 

Ayurvedic view of Parkinson's disease

Ayurveda aims at treating the patient and not just the disease. So, it addresses the root cause and not just the symptoms. As per Ayurveda, we have three doshas or energy forces in us. These are from the five elements Air, Fire, Water, Earth, and Space. These doshas are 

  1. Vata: Air and Space
  2. Pitta:  Fire and Water
  3. Kapha: Water and Earth

 

Apana Vayu (air) controls the elimination of waste from the body. As we age, this Vayu accumulates in the body and gets aggravated over a while.

Stress, lack of sleep, wrong diet choices are factors that cause a Vata imbalance. These make the Apana Vayu aggravate more. So the Vayu flows back in circulation instead of flowing out of the body. It tends to move into any dhatus (tissues) that are weak.

If there is an existing weakness in the brain tissues, the Vayu moves there and causes more damage. This damage affects the coordination of the brain with other parts of the body. Besides, this causes muscle rigidity when it enters any weak muscle tissues(mamsa dhatu).

According to Ayurveda, persons of Vata and Pitta type are most prone to this condition. Persons of Kapha type appear to have natural protection.

Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinson's disease

Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinson's disease aims at treating the Vata disturbance at its origin and in the relocated tissues. The main treatments are

  • Snehana which involves the application of medicated oil 
  • Swedana or medicated steam bath
  • Vasti (enema) to flush out toxins 

 

The most common medicines to treat Parkinson's disease in Ayurveda are ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) and Bala (sida cordifolia). They rejuvenate and nourish the nervous system. Other medications include Mucuna Pruiens, flaxseed, and Triphala.

Personal care after Ayurvedic treatment

A change in diet with food to calm the senses is essential for long term success. A diet rich in Omega 3 and antioxidants like fresh vegetables, fruits, and fish gives excellent results. Meditation and yoga are also good. Finally, it is essential to have a proper support environment at home.

Other Treatment Options for Parkinson's disease

Drugs like levodopa, which increases the dopamine level, is the most common treatment option. These medicines can cause severe side effects. Also, the dosage has to increase as time goes by. DBS Surgery, a complicated brain surgery, is the treatment when the symptoms are severe.

This article has been reviewed and approved by Dr Sajith Varma for authenticity and medical correctness on 10 Mar 2020

Dr Sajith Varma
Dr Sajith Varma
BAMS (Bachelor of Ayurvedic Medicine and Surgery)
Dr Sajith Varma is an Ayurveda physician who has healed thousands by blending his experience and hard-earned wisdom in Ayurveda. A BAMS graduate from Coimbatore Ayurveda College, Dr Sajith Varma is one of the few who have come through a unique seven-and-half-year course under the Gurukul system. He has served as chief physician and senior consultant across many hospitals in India and abroad.
Ayurvedic treatment for Parkinsons disease
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