Glaucoma explained as per principles of ayurveda medical science
In Ayurveda, an ancient system of traditional medicine, glaucoma is primarily understood through the lens of dosha imbalances and the impairment of dhatus (tissues) in the eye. Ayurveda considers the eyes as an important seat of the Pitta dosha, and any disturbance in this dosha, along with a combination of other factors, is believed to contribute to conditions such as glaucoma. Here’s an explanation of glaucoma in Ayurveda:
- Ayurveda recognizes three doshas: Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. The eyes, being a site of Pitta, are susceptible to imbalances in this dosha. In the context of glaucoma, an aggravation of Pitta dosha is often considered a contributing factor.
Ama (Toxins) Formation:
- Ayurveda emphasizes the concept of “ama,” which refers to the accumulation of undigested or toxic substances in the body. The formation of ama is believed to obstruct channels and impair the flow of vital energy (prana) and nutrients to the eyes. This may contribute to the development of eye disorders, including glaucoma.
Impaired Dhatus (Tissues) in the Eyes:
- According to Ayurveda, the eyes are composed of various dhatus, including rasa (plasma), rakta (blood), mamsa (muscles), and shukra (reproductive tissue). Imbalances in these dhatus can lead to structural changes in the eye tissues, affecting their function. In the case of glaucoma, there may be an imbalance in the circulation of fluids within the eye, leading to increased intraocular pressure.
- While Pitta is considered the primary dosha associated with the eyes, Vata dosha can also play a role in the development of glaucoma. Vata imbalances may lead to dryness, stiffness, and impaired circulation, contributing to increased pressure within the eye.
- Ayurveda identifies various factors that can aggravate Pitta dosha and contribute to eye disorders. These factors include excessive exposure to bright lights, heat, spicy and pungent foods, stress, and excessive use of electronic devices. Managing and minimizing these aggravating factors are crucial in Ayurvedic approaches to eye health.
- Ayurvedic practitioners may recommend specific herbal formulations to balance doshas, promote eye health, and address symptoms associated with glaucoma. Herbs like triphala (a combination of three fruits), guduchi, amalaki (Indian gooseberry), and haritaki are often used for their rejuvenating and Pitta-pacifying properties.
Dietary and Lifestyle Modifications:
- Ayurveda places significant emphasis on dietary and lifestyle modifications to maintain ocular health. Recommendations may include a Pitta-pacifying diet, adequate hydration, regular eye exercises, and practices to reduce stress.
- Panchakarma, a set of Ayurvedic detoxification procedures, may be recommended to eliminate accumulated ama and toxins from the body. Specific therapies, such as Netra Tarpana (eye nourishment), may be included to support eye health.
It’s important to note that Ayurvedic treatments for glaucoma are individualized based on the patient’s constitution, dosha imbalances, and the specific characteristics of the eye disorder. Ayurveda is often used as a complementary approach, and individuals with glaucoma should also seek guidance from ophthalmologists and other healthcare professionals for a comprehensive and integrated treatment plan.
Glaucoma is a group of eye conditions that can damage the optic nerve, leading to vision loss and blindness. While Ayurveda can provide supportive measures for eye health, it’s crucial to note that glaucoma requires professional medical attention. Ayurvedic home remedies should be considered as complementary to conventional treatments. Here are some original and detailed home remedies for supporting eye health in the context of glaucoma:
Triphala Eye Wash:
- Ingredients: Triphala powder, clean water.
- Method: Mix 1 teaspoon of Triphala powder in a cup of warm water and let it sit overnight. Strain the mixture and use it as an eye wash. Triphala’s antioxidant properties may help maintain eye health.
Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) Infusion:
- Ingredients: Bilberry leaves, hot water.
- Method: Steep bilberry leaves in hot water to make an infusion. Let it cool, strain, and use it as an eye wash. Bilberry is known for its potential benefits for vision health.
Ghee (Clarified Butter) Massage:
- Ingredients: Pure cow’s ghee.
- Method: Gently massage the temples and surrounding eye area with pure cow’s ghee. This may help improve circulation and provide nourishment to the eyes.
Saffron (Kesar) Milk:
- Ingredients: Saffron strands, warm milk.
- Method: Soak a few saffron strands in warm milk. Consume this saffron-infused milk daily. Saffron is believed to have antioxidant properties beneficial for eye health.
Anulom Vilom Pranayama:
- Method: Practice Anulom Vilom, a yogic breathing technique that involves alternate nostril breathing. This pranayama is thought to balance energy channels and promote overall well-being, including eye health.
Amla (Indian Gooseberry) Supplements:
- Ingredients: Amla capsules or powder.
- Method: Include Amla supplements in your daily routine. Amla, rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, may contribute to overall eye health.
Netra Tarpana with Triphala Ghee:
- Ingredients: Triphala Ghrita (Triphala-infused ghee).
- Method: Consult with an Ayurvedic practitioner for Netra Tarpana treatment, where a well is created around the eyes and filled with Triphala Ghrita. This nourishing practice supports eye health.
Bhringaraj (Eclipta alba) Oil Massage:
- Ingredients: Bhringaraj oil.
- Method: Gently massage Bhringaraj oil around the eyes. Bhringaraj is considered beneficial for eye health and may help reduce eye strain.
Gingko Biloba Tea:
- Ingredients: Gingko biloba leaves, hot water.
- Method: Prepare a tea using Gingko biloba leaves. Let it cool, strain, and consume. Gingko biloba is believed to have potential benefits for vision health.
Triphala Churna with Honey:
- Ingredients: Triphala powder, honey.
- Method: Mix Triphala powder with honey to form a paste. Consume this mixture daily. Triphala may help balance doshas and support eye health.
Turmeric (Haridra) Golden Milk:
- Ingredients: Turmeric powder, warm milk, honey.
- Method: Mix a pinch of turmeric powder with warm milk and honey. Turmeric’s anti-inflammatory properties may contribute to eye health.
- Method: Trataka is a yogic practice involving concentrated gazing at a specific point or object. Regular practice may enhance focus and concentration, benefiting overall eye health.
It’s crucial to consult with both an Ayurvedic practitioner and an ophthalmologist for a comprehensive approach to managing glaucoma. Ayurvedic remedies should be used under professional guidance and as supportive measures alongside conventional medical treatments.