Śirodhara – Ayurvedic Medicine

Śirodhara Introduction

The Head is one of the vital parts (Marma) of the body and a route to all motor and sensory activities. Regulating its functions is the key to managing all psychosomatic and neurological disorders.

Śirodhara literally means “flowing of oil like a stream (dhara) on the head (Śiro or shiro)” and is a part of Panchakarma (specialized five treatments) in Ayurvedic Medicine. It is a curative as well as a rejuvenating treatment that can be experienced by persons of any age.

Śirodhara Technique
It involves continuously pouring a stream of warm medicated oil, herbal decoction, milk or butter milk, or honey on the patient’s forehead from a specified height, for a specific time as prescribed by an Ayurvedic practitioner. Herbs used are chosen carefully after analysing patient’s doshas.

An Ayurvedic practitioner or a therapist administers the chosen medium onto patient’s forehead, which flows from a copper/ earthen/ iron pot hung above the patient’s head.

Śirodhara is given as a set of regular once a week treatments for 4-6 weeks. It is also prescribed as a regular treatment everyday for 7, 14 or 21 days.

Śirodhara is practised in three forms:

– Head bath,
– Whole body bath,
– Local bath

Indications for use
Śirodhara is used traditionally for Vatta disorders, diseases of the head and nervous system. People suffering from the following medical conditions can benefit from this treatment:

Symptoms are relieved in the following conditions when given as a local body bath: backache, skin disorders like psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis, stomach ache, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Whole body bath can be used for dry itchy skin, muscle wasting, debility, chronic fatigue syndrome or as a part of a rejuvenation programme

Pregnant mothers can also undergo this treatment anytime during their pregnancy.

Some of the physiological and psychological benefits of Śirodhara are as follows:

  • Calms vitiated Vatta
  • Deeply relaxes nervous system
  • Stimulates the endocrine system and pineal gland
  • Integrates brain function and creates brain wave coherence and an alpha state
  • Improves blood flow to the brain
  • Improves sleep
  • Improves mental functions like learning, memory, behaviour
  • Adaptogenic
  • Stimulate the sixth and seventh chakras
  • Passive meditation without altering consciousness

After the treatment
Patients must expect to have lots of oil on their scalp and hair. It is advised to keep the oil on your scalp for minimum 30 minutes to achieve the maximum benefits.

Commercial and professional scope

  • A unique therapy exclusive to Ayurveda
  • More demand of therapies like this due to increased stress and hectic lifestyles
  • As a pre and post operative treatment in any major surgical procedure
  • Anybody going through a major change in their lives
  • Couples going through fertility programmes like IVF
  • As a regular treatment for corporate employees to improve their mental health
Ayurvedic herbal medicine woodford green essexAbout The Author

Ashish Paul is a fully qualified Herbal and Ayurvedic Medicine practitioner located in Woodford Green, Essex and typically sees clients from the surrounding areas of Walthamstow, Chigwell and Loughton.

Find out more about Ashish’s work by visiting her GoToSee profile page here

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