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Lower Back Pain, Sciatica, Slipped Disc - Ayurvedic Treatment

Interview of Dr Madan Gulati (MD - Ayurveda)

Interviewer: Hello friends! Welcome to our show "Swasthya Gyan Health Diary". Friends, in today's modern and busy lifestyle we're unable to take care of our health. Due to which, we invite lethal diseases like diabetes, obesity and hypertension in our body at a very young age. The reasons for this are our eating habits and lifestyle. Today, we'll talk about Back Pain. Back Pain, nowadays has become a common issue that is found in people from all groups, be it youngsters and or the old aged. With a solution for this problem, we have amongst us Dr. Madan Gulati. Dr. Gulati, we heartily welcome you to our show.

Interviewer: Dr. Gulati guide our viewers about, what lower back pain is?

Dr. Gulati: In today's world, lower back pain which is also known as Slip Disc, prolapse of disc, herniated disc, and degenerative disease. Sciatica is the major cause of lower back pain. When there is pressure on the sciatic nerve along with lower back pain there is pain in the sole of the affected foot radiating towards the calf muscles. The pain begins at the lower back covering the buttocks and radiating towards the knee joint, calf muscles and goes till the big toe and this pain can be felt in the entire foot. Patients come with a complaint of tingling sensation. If we get an MRI done then the affected vertebrae are L4, L5 and S1. Basically, there are vertebrates in our back and the Lumbar vertebrae 4& 5 have a disc between them which is similar to a rubber plate. Just like we keep a saddle on the horse's back to tolerate the jerks, similarly this disc also acts like a shock absorber. There is a band in between these vertebras which has a protein based fluid. This protein based fluid is known as spongy tissues. The disc between two vertebras L4-L5 & L5-S1 is to prevent jerk. Back pain is a common issue in people who work on computer for longer hours, people who are stressed, in the obese or people who have suffered injuries by lifting heavy weights, this causes Herniation which means rupture in the disc due to exudation of fluid from the disc followed by displacement of the Sciatic nerve also known as the largest nerve in the body. Its roots are attached to the vertebras. This process irritates the sciatic nerve and causes pain in the areas of distribution of this nerves. This pain is extremely severe and it occurs when the patient sits for a prolonged time or lies down in a particular posture but when the patient walks for some time the tendency of pain decreases but the pain might start again on standing for a longer time or even on the slightest touch. These days, the number of patients with this problem are increasing in our OPD.

Interviewer: What is the cause of this disease?

Dr. Gulati: This is a lifestyle related disease. Excessive consumption of junk food like pizza, burger, aerated drinks and heavy food items. Curd is also one of the root cause of sciatic problem, prolapse of disc. Regular consumption of milk and milk products, non-vegetarian foods followed by no physical activity also contributes to this ailment. High stress level, sitting for long hours and obesity are another major factors. The same causes that cause obesity become the reason of sciatica also. This problem is common in young generation. After delivery many ladies get lower back pain followed by inflammation and prolapsed intervertebral disc. Sciatica is commonly seen after delivery as they are weak and have to lie down quite a lot which causes accumulation of Vata. In Ayurveda, it is compared with Vata Dosha. Vata aggravation is due to its properties like dry, light, small etc. This aggravates due to eating dry food. People who take dry food like cornflakes, oats, and porridge very often are most likely to get affected by this disorder. The body needs to be properly lubricated with whole oils like almonds, cashew nuts, walnuts etc. You should also consume fresh vegetables. The people who are suffering from sciatica pain should avoid heavy food items, but, eat light food items that are easily digestable. Whenever you eat almonds, walnuts you should soak these dry fruits for at least eight hours. Fenugreek seeds are also beneficial. They should be soaked overnight and consumed in the morning. Combination of turmeric, fenugreek and dry ginger is also beneficial for back pain patients.

Interviewer: Dr. Gulati tell our viewers if Allopathic medicines can be consumed along with Ayurvedic medicines?

Dr. Gulati: This is a very good question. In Ayurveda, we perform Katibasti with a medicated oil. In Katishool, we make a ring like boundary of Black gram flour after that we put medicated oil in it which is very beneficial. We have an Ayurvedic formulation for this disorder which is Hakam Churna, it contains halo, kalonji, methi, ajwain these four ingredients are used in equal quantity, it can also be prepared at home by taking all the ingredients in 50 gms amount, grinding them separately. Take 1 teaspoon of this churna with double amount of desi khand (unrefined sugar) and cream as this formulations cuts down the fat content in the body. It is a wonderful preparation. Along with this we prescribe, coral calcium, bone support. Boswellia curcumin which contains curcumin which reduces inflammation due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Boswellia is known as shallaki and curcumin is the extract of turmeric. In this, we also give Ayurvedic medicines like Brihat vat chintamani ras, yogendra ras, ekang veer ras, and vatgjankush ras. Some patients walk with a limp, for them we have a miraculous formulation called Khanjnikari Ras. When numbness occurs in patients, Ras raj ras comes to the rescue. Ashwagandha powder (Withania somnifera), Brahmi are also recommended. Which medicine is to given to whom depends on the condition of the patient.. Ama formation is also in this disease as it is due to toxin products. Amvatantak churna has miraculous benefits as it keeps a check of free radical formation. Sometimes, due to prolapse disc there is a deficiency of protein and calcium in the body so, we recommend bone support, Kaishore guggul, joint aid to the patient. On checking the pulse, we figure out the problem as in if there is aggravation of vata dosha, formation of ama (toxins) or free radicals in the body. The root cause of all these diseases are stomach. We should take care of stomach and make sure that the patient never suffers from constipation. Castor oil is extremely useful. Take 15-20 nirgundi leaves, and add them to some castor oil and let it boil. The usage of this combination works like a charm. Parijat (Nyctanthes arnor-tristis) is a plant whose leaves are hairy. It's also known as har singaar. Take 15-20 leaves of har singaar, crush them and boil in a glass of water till just one- fourth of the entire amount is remaining. Now, put some castor oil to it. This decoction gives phenomenal results in backache. As I have told you the benefits of Hakam Churna, nirgundi, har singar leaves. The treatment of this ailment is very successful in Ayurveda. Patients are advised to take pain killers and numerous multivitamins and even after that there is no relief and then finally the doctor suggests surgery. Petrified of the surgery patients come to us. With 40 years of experience in Ayurveda, I have seen numerous patients who were recommended to go under the knife and we cured them successfully with pure ayurvedic formulations like I already told you we use combination like Ras Raj Ras, Yogendra Ras, Briht Vata Chintamani ras, Vat Ganjankush, Maha Vat Vidhvansan, Ekang Veer Ras. We give Castor oil, Maharasnadi Quath, Rasna Saptak Quath, Rasna, Gokshur, Erand, Devdaru, Punarnava, Guduchi, Aragvadh, Sonth Churna, Navkarshik, Triphala, Neem, Manjishta, Vacha, Kantkari, Vasa, Darunisha, Navkarshik. These types of preparations are used. Along with that we take care of the diet of the patient. We guide the patient to avoid stress in their life because most of the nervous system disorders the due to stress. We recommend meditation as it relaxes the mind. Raj Yoga Meditation works phenomenally for patients suffering from sciatica. Physical, mental and social well-being is very important to stay healthy. We should take help of ayurvedic medicines to cure inflammatory conditions and avoid being operated. In Ayurveda, this disease is known as Gridhrasi. Gridhrasi is the Sanskrit name of Sciatica. Gridhrasihar Vat works on the sciatic nerve. In this condition, the patient should take care of diet, do regular exercise and take proper rest. Patient should avoid jumping, jerking or strenuous workouts as they can cause recurrence. If the patients follows all these guidelines strictly, they can get quick relief sometimes, within 2 months.

Interviewer: What message would you like to give to our viewers?

Dr. Gulati: I want to give this message that in Sciatica, patients should not avoid prolonged sitting. They should take a stroll after every 20 minutes. Get rid of obesity as it is the major cause. You should avoid heavy workout sessions. If you lift weights more than your strength it escalates the chances of slip disc problem because there is occurrence of herniation, which causes the fluid to leak. The material inside it irritates the nerves. So, to save ourselves, we should do regular walk. Yoga, Pranayam, Meditation, Breathing pranayama like Anulom Vilom have a huge role to play as it increases the oxygen level in the body. Patients with Lower back pain patient should do bhastrika pranayama, kapalbhati very slowly in order to avoid jerks. Constipation is a major cause of low back pain. Castor oil is very useful as it gives immediate relief in sciatica. At night time if we consume three teaspoon of castor oil with warm water, warm milk add rasnasaptak kwath mixed with some dry ginger powder to it, it works amazingly. Do not eat foods like bread, biscuit, heavy lentils which cause constipation. Patients should use cow's ghee in daily routine as it provides lubrication to the body as it is very important. Avoid eating refined foods. Consume fruits, dry fruits & be happy. Do light weight exercises daily.

Interviewer: Friends, I hope that you would have noted down all the important information given by Dr. Gulati. Tomorrow, we'll be back with a solution for another problem. Till then Dr Gulati and I will take your leave. Namaskar (Greetings)!

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