Ayurveda branches and studies

Kaumarabhritya (Paediatrics) “ This branch provides a comprehensive knowledge about prenatal and postnatal care, and gynecology. Kaumarabhritya takes into consideration the physical and mental state of the mother, which has direct association with the child. It recommends a particular regimen of diet, nutrition and conduct for pregnant woman, and is so advanced that even years ago, the growth and progress of the foetus is described in detail. Apart from dealing with infertility problems, its causes and treatment, this also mentions about the method to deal with various disorders of child health, such as teething disorder, rickets or gastrointestinal diseases.

Vajikarana (Science of Aphrodisiac) “ This branch of Ayurvedic studies, describes the art of producing a healthy offspring, for betterment of society. Therefore, this branch deals with issues such as infertility, conditions relating to shukra dhathu or crucial reproductive fluids of the body. This branch prescribes effective formulations to provide nutrition, and enhance the quality of body fluids, and emphasizes in leading a disciplined life. This branch of Ayurveda, highlights that celibacy is necessary for good health, as it increases memory, intellect and will power, in addition to maintaining a healthy body. As Shukra datu, is directly associated with body immunity, Vajikarana, prescribes the use of aphrodisiacs and tonics for enhancing reproductive capabilities.

Bhuta Vidya (Psychiatry) “ This branch specifically deals with diseases of mind, which is caused by super natural forces. Different explanations are provided for the word Bhuta. While some refer to it as ghosts or bad spirits that cause abnormal psychological condition, others say it represents bacteria or viruses. It is also believed that the past karma, is the cause of such diseases, and hence Ayurveda does not have a direct explanation in terms of Tridosha. Bhuta Vidya explains that in most cases, illness is caused by mental disturbance when tarnas (ignorance) and rajas (passion) are the main factors. It refers to use of disinfectant plants ˜graha vidya dravva for fumigation, to keep the atmosphere germ free. It also recommends pranayama and meditation to soothe psychological disturbances.

Rasayana (Science of Rejuvenation) “ This particular branch of Ayurveda, concentrates on rasayana therapy, which helps in increasing the immunity of a person and in enhancing ojas (life force) through regeneration of body cells and tissues. Rasayana is considered a therapeutic process to defer old age. Rasayana refers to augmentation of rasa (the crucial fluid produced during food digestion). Ayurveda considers rasa, as the body fluid which sustains life, and hence considers Rasayana as a method of treatment through which rasa is balanced in the body.

Another suggestion of rasa in Ayurveda is that it is the herbal medicine which retains the health and life of an individual, increasing his body and mental vigor. Hence rasayanas made from herbs and medicinal plants such as haritaki, amalaki etc are used since ancient days in giving disease free, long life to individuals. Another aim of this branch of Ayurvedic studies is to balance tridoshas. Hence this branch mentions the preparations of herbal oils, meditative practices, Pranayama and meditation to attain mind and body healing.

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