Rheumatoid Arthritis is the most common form of autoimmune arthritis nowadays. It was noticed that about 75% of RA patients are women. About, 1 – 4% of women may get rheumatoid arthritis in their lifetime. The disease most often begins between the ages of 30-50.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is defined as a chronic disease that causes joint pain, stiffness, swelling, and decreased movement of the joints. Small joints in the feet and hands are most commonly affected. Sometimes in the severe stage, Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) can affect your organs, such as eyes, skin, or lungs.
The stiffness of joints in active RA is often the worst in the morning that commonly lasts for one to two hours (or even the whole day). It generally improves with the movement of the joints. If the person having stiffness for a long time in the morning it is indicated that you may have RA, as this is not common in other conditions.
What are the Causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
The specific causes of Rheumatoid Arthritis have yet to be identified. Thus it is an autoimmune disease but several conditions that cause rheumatoid arthritis are given below –
- Family history
- Environmental exposures
- Hormonal imbalance
- Weak immune system.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is a long-term or chronic disease marked by symptoms of inflammation and pain in the joints. These symptoms and signs occur during periods known as exacerbations.
RA symptoms, which can occur in every patient, include:
- Stiffness in joints
- Loss of functions of joints
- Loss of energy
- Low-grade fever
- Loss of appetite
- Dry eyes and mouth from a related health problem
- Morning stiffness for 30 minutes or longer
- The same joints on both sides of the body are affected.
What is the Ayurvedic view of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
In Ayurveda, Rheumatoid Arthritis is termed as ‘’Amavata’’. Amavata is a disease in which vitiation of Vata Dosha and accumulation of Ama take place in joint(s), and it simulates rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in modern parlance. Ama is an undigested product, which is not homogeneous for the body. Whenever that Ama gets localized in the body tissue or joints, it can lead to the production of pain, stiffness, swelling, tenderness, etc in the related joints.
Common signs and Symptoms are Jwara (pyrexia), Alasya (lethargy), Apaka (indigestion), Aruchi (anorexia), Gaurava (heaviness in the body), Asyavairasya (altered taste perception), Daurbalya (weakness), Akarmanyata (inability to do work), Utsahahani (laziness), Angamarda (body ache), Daha (burning sensation), Trishna (increased thirst), etc.
What is the Ayurvedic Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
As per modern medicines, there are several anti-inflammatory, analgesics, steroidal, and disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs which are having certain side effects also. But in Ayurveda, natural herbs can be used in place of high dosage medicines that cure this condition naturally without causing any side effects.
Chandigarh Ayurved Centre had made a specialized kit that mainly forms to cure the Rheumatoid Arthritis naturally. The kit contains all the natural products having many medicinal properties in it. The medicines are free from side effects and no other additives are added in it. The kit has a total of 4 products – Detox premium powder, Kaunchbeej capsules, Panchasakar churna, and Swarna guggulu.
ALL PRODUCTS DESCRIPTION IN DETAIL –
1. Detox Premium Powder
Detox premium powder is made to remove excess ama from the body and provide proper functioning of all the systems. The powder is a mixture of jahar mohra, akik pishti, gandhak rasayan, shankh bhasma, moti pishti, kamdudha ras, etc. It is very beneficial in reducing the swelling, redness, stiffness, and improves the movements of joints.
Recommended Dosage – Take 1 sachet twice daily with normal water.
2. Kaunchbeej Capsule
Kaunchbeej capsule contains the bioactive alkaloids such as mucunine, oils, pruriendine, and gallic acids that are very beneficial to ease the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and cures of its root cause. The capsules balance all the tridosha thus provide strength to the joints and allow the patient to work freely.
Recommended Dosage – Take 1 capsule twice daily with normal water.
3. Panchasakar Churna
Panchasakar churna is the best medicine for removing the ama. The churna is composed of Svaran patri (Cassia angustifolia), Shunthi (Zingiber officinale), Haritaki (Terminalia chebula), Shatapushpa (Foeniculum vulgare), and Saindhava lavana (Rock salt). It balances the aggravated vata and pitta and maintains the proper digestion.
Recommended Dosage – Take 1 tablespoon with lukewarm water at bedtime.
4. Swarna Guggulu
Swarna guggulu is widely used for the management of arthritis. The tablet is composed of ingredients such as Ashwagandha, Kumkum, and Swarna bhasma. These ingredients reduce the stiffness, pain, cure difficulty in walking, and provide strength to the joints.
Recommended Dosage – Take 1 tablet twice daily with normal water.
What is the Panchakarma Treatment of Rheumatoid Arthritis?
Medications can reduce inflammation in joints to relieve pain and prevent or slow joint damage. Occupational and physical therapy can help in protecting joints. If joints are severely damaged by RA, Panchakarma plays the best role in preventing the damage and allow the patient to work free from any kind of stiffness, discomfort, pain, etc.
Chandigarh Ayurved Centre provides the best Panchakarma therapies to manage the symptoms of RA in any stage. The procedures are done by experienced therapists under the guidance of expert Doctors. The therapies for RA are given below –
- Anuvasana Vasti – Anuvasana means to stay. They neither aggravate the doshas nor cause any complication. Saindhvadi oil is an effective oil for anuvasana Vasti in amavata. Vasti is considered as the most useful therapeutic procedures in which medicated oils, decoctions, decoctions with milk, are introduced into the large intestines through the rectum with the help of basti yantra. Vasti is the best treatment for vata dosha, so also for pitta, kapha, rakta in sansarga & sannipata doshas. Vasti can eradicate most of the diseases occurring in Sakha, kostha & marma sthana.
- Kshara Vasti – Kshara Vasti is considered as a Shodhana Chikitsa in the case of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Patients who have symptoms like Aruchi, Jwara, Shula, Shoth, are mainly recommended for this procedure. The therapy is very beneficial in removing the toxins and maintains the normal functioning of the digestive system.
- Baluka Sweda – Swedan is a specialized treatment in Ayurveda which helps in providing unparalleled relief in pain, redness, swelling, stiffness, etc. In Baluka sweda we use heated sand tied in a bolus to provide heat to the pain-affected joints or body parts.
Healthy diet and Lifestyle
Here we described some of the healthy diet and lifestyle which must be followed by the patients who suffered from RA, these precautions are very beneficial to ease the symptoms and further prevent the formation of Ama in the body.
- The pain, stiffness, and swelling of rheumatoid arthritis may make you less inclined to exercise, but being sedentary can make symptoms worse. Regular exercise can maintain or improve flexibility in joints and the surrounding muscles. Strength training, which builds muscle and tendon strength to stabilize and support joints, can also help. Do the exercise for about 30 minutes daily.
- Smoking is considered a risk factor for rheumatoid arthritis, and stop smoking may improve your symptoms.
- Try adding foods that contain omega-3s, such as salmon and olive oil. These foods have anti-inflammatory properties thus eating them can lower overall inflammation levels in your body.
- Stress can exacerbate RA symptoms, thus the patient should adopt meditation and deep breathing techniques to get rid of the stressful conditions.
- Yoga can help people with various types of arthritis reduce joint pain, improve joint flexibility and function, lower stress and tension for better sleep. Some of the best yoga is mentioned here which must be followed by the RA patients – Sarvangasana, Vrkasana, Mrtasana, etc.
- RA can sometimes lead to limited use of the hands due to stiffness, swelling, etc. The patient should bend the wrists up and down, slowly curling the fingers, spreading the fingers wide on a table, and squeezing a stress ball can all help to increase strength and flexibility in the hands.
- As RA increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, it is vital to keep the heart as healthy as possible. The patient should ride a bike as it can be a safe way to get the joints moving and improving cardiovascular fitness.
Vaidya Karanvir Singh is the younger Vaidya in Chandigarh Ayurved & Panchakarma Centre. He is the fourth generation in his family who is practicing as a general consultant in Ayurved & Panchakarma treatment at Chandigarh