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Pancha Karma

What is Pancha Karma?

The term ‘Pañca Karma’ literally means ‘5 Therapies’, which may be employed individually or in varying sequences and modifications as per the medical requirements of each patient. These 5 Therapies have been used for millennia to purify and rejuvenate the body and all of its systems at the deepest level, thus fighting disease, facilitating longevity and bringing about a qualitative transformation of body and mind.

The 5 Therapies, or procedures, of Pancha Karma are:

  1. Vamana: Therapeutic Vomiting
  2. Virecana: Purgation Therapy
  3. Niruha Basti: Cleansing Enema Therapy
  4. Anuvasana Basti: Lubricating/Tonifying Enema Therapy
  5. Nasya: Cleansing and Satiating Nasal Therapy

While these are the main procedures which give Pancha Karma its name, each of these is accompanied by numerous preparatory and concluding therapies such as Abhyanga (Oil Massage), Svedana (Steam Therapies), Pinda Sveda (Herbal Poultices) and many more.

Prior to any major cleansing therapy such as Vamana or Virecana, the body is prepared through the observance of a customized diet determined person to person, internal herbal protocols, medicated oil massage and various forms of steam therapy. The combination of all these stimulates and rejuvenates the digestive system, imbues the body with elasticity and resilience, and liberates deep seated toxins to make them ready for elimination.

After cleansing therapies (or as the main treatment for elderly people, young people and those who have debilitating diseases), satiating and tonifying therapies are employed to rejuvenate the body and optimize all of its physiological systems. These treatments may include external and internal oleation therapies utilized specially medicated fats, rejuvenating ‘Rasayana’ herbal compounds and jams and specific tonifying and relaxing treatments for the sense organs.

It is important to note that the depth and benefits of both the cleansing and rejuvenating aspects of Pancha Karma are greatly contingent upon the time that can be given to the overall program. As an alternative medicine system, Ayurveda can not legally claim to ‘treat’ or ‘cure’ any diseases or pathologies in the United States. However, Ayurveda and Pancha Karma can offer qualitative improvement and support the overall health and resilience of the body through most disorders.

YOUR PANCHA KARMA EXPERIENCE

The experience of Pancha Karma will vary greatly person to person depending upon their unique needs, with consideration for the constitution and current condition of the patient along with the season, environment, time available and numerous other factors. Pancha Karma at The Arogya Center is part of a greater experience of continued care, with ongoing consulting before and after to provide the needed dietary, lifestyle and herbal support to secure tangible results over the needed timeline of each patient. Unlike many available Pancha Karma programs which include standard treatment offerings and are set up to exist as a ‘one time experience,’ at Arogya we pride ourselves on offering Pancha Karma as a part of continued and complete care, with each Pancha Karma Program developed on an individual basis. Pancha Karma will not be administered if the patient is not properly prepared to receive these treatments.

The overall experience of Pancha Karma can vary greatly patient to patient as per their condition and the treatments they are receiving. There can be experiences of profound relaxation, lightness and euphoria. As the body is cleansed and transformed, there can also be waves of multitudinous physical experiences as well as emotional oscillation and purging.

A typical day of Pancha Karma at The Arogya Center will include:

  1. Daily check-in and physical evaluation with a supervising practitioner
  2. Preparatory or tonifying Therapies such as Abhyanga, Svedana, Pinda Sveda, Pizhicil, Nasya and Bastis
  3. Observing a specially-created custom diet reflective of patient needs
  4. Taking sufficient time for rest, recovery and relaxation

Different permutations of Pancha Karma and Ayurvedic treatment can prove beneficial for everyone. In the general support and optimization of health, Pancha Karma is usually performed from puberty onwards, however this does not restrict the utilization of Pancha Karma in the management of specific disorders in young children. There is no upper age limit for Pancha Karma, though the specific treatments and sequences utilized in Pancha Karma will vary depending on age and physical capabilities.

In regards to timing, Pancha Karma is classically advised to be done at the junction of each season to support optimum health and longevity. However, it is best to seek out Pancha Karma at the frequency advised by a qualified Ayurvedic Practitioner.

Prior to any major cleansing therapy such as Vamana or Virecana, the body is prepared through the observance of a customized diet determined person to person, internal herbal protocols, medicated oil massage and various forms of steam therapy. The combination of all these stimulates and rejuvenates the digestive system, imbues the body with elasticity and resilience, and liberates deep seated toxins to make them ready for elimination.

After cleansing therapies (or as the main treatment for elderly people, young people and those who have debilitating diseases), satiating and tonifying therapies are employed to rejuvenate the body and optimize all of its physiological systems. These treatments may include external and internal oleation therapies utilized specially medicated fats, rejuvenating ‘Rasayana’ herbal compounds and jams and specific tonifying and relaxing treatments for the sense organs.

It is important to note that the depth and benefits of both the cleansing and rejuvenating aspects of Pancha Karma are greatly contingent upon the time that can be given to the overall program. As an alternative medicine system, Ayurveda can not legally claim to ‘treat’ or ‘cure’ any diseases or pathologies in the United States. However, Ayurveda and Pancha Karma can offer qualitative improvement and support the overall health and resilience of the body through most disorders.