Treating Skin Conditions with Ayurveda
The strength of Ayurveda is treating the underlying cause.
Recently I have been seeing a lot of clients in my clinic suffering from skin conditions, especially Eczema. Winter can contribute to flare ups when the skin becomes dry, inflamed and itchy.
Conventionally there is little that can be done, besides steroids which I have found most people are reluctant to do long term. So what is the solution?
I have found Ayurveda to be very effective for skin conditions. Samantha first came to my clinic when she had tried various treatments for her eczema, all giving her short term relief.
She had been suffering from eczema for over 6 years. It had started in the creases of her elbows and knees but had now spread to her back and abdomen. The skin was red and inflamed, oozing in places with excessive dryness. It was thicker and darker with a scaly appearance, making her conscious and unable to wear certain clothes. The itching was giving her sleepless nights making her tired and anxious.
The psychological effects were immense too. Samantha felt depressed and helpless as she was unable to find a solution to her issues.
The strength of Ayurveda is treating the underlying cause, which for Samantha was her digestion. We first treated her weakened digestion and cleansed the body of the aggravated Doshas mainly Pitta Dosha which is usually the underlying element in most skin conditions.
Next step was to improve the 3 parts of the immune system; the Gut, Liver and bone marrow with some Liver Ayurvedic herbs and Guduchi Sattwa for the bone marrow. We devised a healthier diet by eliminating foods that would aggravate the skin further; spicy, oily and fried fatty foods as well as dairy and sugar.
Stress can also be a trigger, so simple but effective lifestyle adjustments can make a big difference to calming the central nervous system.
Within 2 months Samantha’s skin had improved, the inflammation and itching had reduced, allowing her to sleep better and feel less tired and anxious. In 4 months the skin resumed its natural moisture balance and after 8 months we healed the eczema completely.
Now I see Samantha only twice a year, at the change of seasons to mildly cleanse the body to prevent her eczema from returning and to maintain her digestion and gut health whilst keeping the Doshas in balance.
In all eczema cases I have found diet and lifestyle a key factor in reducing inflammation and itching which are the most distressing symptoms for sufferers.
If you are suffering from eczema eliminate Dairy and sugar from your diet and watch out for spicy, oily and all fried fatty foods. Find effective lifestyle strategies to manage stress levels. With small changes over time you will see how these can help to reduce and manage your eczema better.
Ragini Varia is our resident Ayurvedic Practitioner and has a wide experience of treating many conditions using Ayurvedic herbs, diet and lifestyle recommendations. Her main interest lies in skin conditions and women’s health. Read more about Ragini’s therapies.