I met her at one of the camps organized by us at Ayurveda Healing.
“My left knee and ankle joint hurt very badly. I suffer from excruciating pain and am in deep distress. Walking to me seems like mammoth of a task. I took a lot of treatment but nothing seems effective in eradicating pain except for the time pain killers are on the play. Please help!” were her words describing the pitiful situation.
It was really disturbing seeing her suffer so much. Her left knee and ankle joints were swollen. As I touched to palpate, the impression on her face, the way it crunched in gave a fair idea of the amount of pain she was suffering from!
After examining her, going through the reports and taking a proper history it was clearly Osteoarthritis of the knee and ankle joint.
Generally speaking it is joint degeneration; part of normal ageing process; the degree of which varies from person to person depending on lifestyle and associated factors.
Let us have a quick overview of Osteoarthritis:
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a type of joint disease that results from breakdown of joint cartilage and underlying bone. The most common symptoms are joint pain and stiffness.
Other symptoms may include joint swelling and decreased range of motion. Joints on one side of the body are often more affected than those on the other. Usually the symptoms come on over years. It can affect work and normal daily activities.
The important point is cartilage (a type of connective tissue) and bone destruction over time which fails to repair!
After taking extensive diet and lifestyle counseling along with medications for about 15 days her joints stopped hurting, could walk….with a sigh of relief she smiled and said “I am better now.” She continued the treatment for about 2 months.
**I present to you General Management Guidelines for Osteoarthritis which are rooted to Ayurveda:
1. When you wake up, don’t rush out from the bed. Open your eyes, take a deep breath and move your joints slowly, rotate them, stretch, flex so that the blood circulation improves, the affected area gets more oxygen, energy. Any fluid deposition from the night is also cleared away.
2. Such problems intensify in winters. Take lukewarm water sip wise about half to one glass whenever you feel like having water.
3. Expose yourself to ample sunlight. A bask in the sun with your back facing towards it.
4. Two layers of warm clothes are better than one! Instead of wearing one thick layer of woolen pullover, wear two layers of clothing. Doing this, traps air in between the layers which helps keep the body warmer!
5. Your diet should include:
a) A Calcium source
• Bone soup/ Bone broth/ Kharora soup: 1 bowl preferably in supper
• A glass of boiled and flavored milk (flavoring with fig, dates, almonds in appropriate quantity): Morning and evening
b) About 5 ml of oil (for normal, healthy individuals)
c) Dry fruits (Almond, cashew, walnut, fig, raisin) : 1 to 2 pieces of any type in breakfast
d) Avoid frozen foods, food articles like: curry (a dish made using besan i.e. gram flour and curd/buttermilk), peas, white grams, cucumber, radish and stale foods.
6. Physiotherapy: It is essential to keep your muscles toned and maintain a healthy muscle mass so that the joint mobility is less painful and less strained. It also reduces swelling, if any. Your physiotherapist will guide you about proper exercise and postures
7. Massage: A light massage with suitable oil (if there is no swelling).
Dry heat (using warm cloth) should be given if the joint is swelled up.
8. Adequate rest is as important as is exercise. Neither rest in one position for long nor move about in excess.
Balancing is the key.
9. Stop Worrying about your problem. Develop a hobby instead! Go out. Do what you love, what you enjoy; what makes you happier. Researches prove that people who brood a lot or remain isolated suffer more. They tend to think and feel their problem continuously and never get out of it. Step out to get your problem out!
10. Know that it is a normal ageing process. Feel proud that you came this far! Spread your glory ahead. Enjoy life!
** A more personalized and intensive treatment is given after analyzing Medical Personality and medical history.