Skin forms the very essence of the sense organ. Skin senses the pain, temperature, pain and pressure. It integrates the whole body under a single roof. Apparently, skin is prone to injuries both externally and internally. Yes, cuts and burns are just one small part of skin injuries. In fact, skin diseases indicate that something is wrong inside your body. Lack of equilibrium or harmony manifests through skin. In Ayurveda, skin diseases, be it rashes, redness, patches or other severe skin conditions are caused due to doshica imbalance. Similarly, ayurvedic approach on skin diseases are unique and focus on imparting the harmony, from internally.
Causes of skin diseases from Ayurvedic Perspective
From ayurvedic perspective, the major causes of disease are improper diet and lifestyle. With or without knowledge, following a diet or lifestyle that goes against the nature of the individual (called as prakriti) as well as the season leads to imbalance in the composition of the body. The similar principle applies to skin disease.
In fact most of the imbalance in the energy levels carries symptoms through skin and some form of imbalance manifests as skin diseases.
While imbalance of any dosha may cause skin disease, it is associated more with pitta (heat element) imbalance. Any activity that increases the fire or heat element in the body aggravates pitta and leads to imbalance.
For instance, typically pitta aggravates during the rainy season. The fire element increases during the summer called Greesham Ritu and as a result during the beginning of the rainy season called Varsha Ritu it aggravates. This is the major reason behind prevalence of skin diseases during rainy season.
In many cases, Ayurveda stated the sluggish liver function (malfunction / dysfunction of liver) associated with doshic imbalance causes skin diseases. Imbalance of kapha and dosha leads to accumulation of toxins (ama) in the liver, which breakouts through skin. On the other hand, disease is caused by ama i.e accumulation of toxins in the body also causes skin diseases.
Some of the common skin condition 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 marks or scars as a result of acne
- bacterial, fungal and viral skin infection
How Ayurveda approaches skin diseases?
Restoration of doshic balance is the ultimate goal of ayurvedic treatment. Treatment of skin diseases in ayurveda involves analysis of the body, understanding the dosic composition, understanding the diet and lifestyle of the patient, pulse diagnosis and physical examination of the skin health. Apparently, treatment method involves combination of healthy diet and lifestyle, combination of ayurvedic therapies specialized to restore the imbalance, herbs, meditation, yoga practice etc. Ayurveda can cure long term skin diseases and chronic conditions like dermatitis, eczema etc.
When it comes to zeroing down on the therapies that can cure skin diseases, it is literally hard to come down on one or a set of therapies without analyzing the patient.
Since toxic accumulation aggravates in various forms, Panchakarma is primarily recommended to treat skin diseases.
Panchakarma refers to five different rejuvenation therapies which cleanses, detoxifies and removes all toxins from the body at cellular level. The therapy is a combination of various therapies through which different forms of toxins are eliminated and evacuated in different ways. Elimination through sweat, induced vomiting, induced motion, cleansing the liver, and more.
When the body is sheer clear of toxins, it gains the equilibrium and apparently the organs begin the normal functioning.
- Designing the diet and lifestyle recommendations to restore the lost doshic balance
- Nutritional recommendations only if required
- Application of herbal / medical oils to soothe the external wounds
- Ayurvedic therapies and medicines as prescribed
There is nothing called temporary symptomatic relief or treating the symptoms in ayurvedic medicine. The root cause of the skin disease is analyzed before planning the treatment protocol. Balancing the doshas automatically eliminates the root cause of the skin diseases, which is the mainline of ayurveda.