Psoriasis is a chronic inflammatory disease of the skin with red raised lesions characterized by severe itching, dryness of the skin and white silvery scales. It is a non infectious disease which may go in remission for years and may become worse at times. Common sites of lesions are elbow, scalp, knees and lower back. Pitting of nails is very common. Ayurveda explains psoriasis as the disorder named KITIBHA and it is a form of vitiated Vata and Kapha. These affect the skin, blood tissue and water element of that area making the skin discoloured, thin and scaly.
Causes of Psoriasis
Ayurveda believes that it is caused due to vitiation of Vata and Kapha Doshas. The causes of vitiation of these
1. Consuming foods that should not be eaten together ( eg. Milk and radish, salt and milk, fish and milk)
2. Excessive intake of black beans, sea food, jaggery, yogurt, sour and salty food
3. Excess exposure of stresses or psychological trauma
4. Taking day time naps
5. Bathing with cold water immediately after doing any kind of strenuous physical exertion
6. Controlling natural urges
7. Eating too salty or too sour or too heavy food (which is difficult to digest) .
8. Smoking and use of alcohol
According to modern medicine the exact cause of psoriasis is unknown but throat infections, trauma, burns, bruises, hereditary are certain factors that trigger Psoriasis.
Ayurvedic treatment for Psoriasis: Different Panchakarma techniques can be used.
1. Vamana and Virechana : Consumption of medicated ghee (Snehapanam) considering the condition of
person for 5 to 7 days followed by induction of vomiting and / or purgation using certain herbs.
2. Takradhara : Dripping of medicated buttermilk on the forehead (dhara).
3. Lepanam : Application of medicated paste or ointments on the affected area.
4. Basti : medicated enemas are given for a recommended time duration.
5. Yoga and meditation : to achieve a calm mind.
6. Internal medicines that include : Manjisthadi ghan Vati, Bakuchi capsules, Arogyavardhini tablets.
7. External application of oil, Psorayog ointment, Psorolin soap
Some Other Tips for Psoriasis
1. Avoid all factors that trigger Psoriasis.
2. Do not prick or peel the skin .
3. Do not use soap for bathing as it dries the skin . Instead use chick pea flour (besan ) or use any medicated
4. Avoid day time naps.
5. Have a bath daily as it helps in removing scales and inflamed skin .
6. After the bath pat dry the skin , do not rub vigorously
7. Expose your skin to small amount of sunlight which helps in improvement of lesions but a larger amount may
worsen the condition.
8. Avoid excess use of sour, salty and acidic food.