Ayurveda is the world’s most ancient system of preventive health care developed in India before 5000 years. Ayurveda (which translates as Knowledge of life) is a natural approach of creating balance and improving the innate healing powers of the body which is a harmony of physical body with the mind and soul.
Wellness through Nature
Being well is far more important than being wealthy. Ayurveda is relevant these days as it will be effective as a method of Rejuvenation which can be adapted to modern lifestyle. This will be helpful in cleansing the internal systems, removing deep rooted toxins that accumulate on subtle levels. Hence it will bring back the memory of proper functioning to each and every cell in your physiology. Once the toxins are eliminated, the flow of intelligence re-establishes in each and every cell .This brings back total balance of the body and it will result in a stronger immune system. When the body is more in harmony with the natural directive, a feeling of peace, calmness, happiness, and contentment are naturally experienced by the mind and emotions.
Information technology professionals and their common ailments
Information Technology or more commonly known as I.T. is the most popular career and the fastest growing industry in the world. The Information Technology industry operates at a speed much faster than any other industry and for this reason, there’s always a significant demand for highly-skilled workers. Many of the youngsters and others are attracted to this field just because of this reason. The comparative low cost of the study and high income from the job are other positive factors.
But the nature of IT job frequently invites many of the ailments. Whatever diseases people generally suffer from between 55 and 60, IT professionals get by the age of 45. Most of the diseases reduce the quality of life rather than threatening the life. Most of them are chronic diseases too. Some of them are noted below.
- chronic fatigue (common problem)
- cervical problems /neck pain
- lumbar problems /back pain
- frozen shoulder
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- piles( hemorrhoids)
- Gastro esophageal reflux disease/ acidity
- Cardiovascular disease
- Stress, anxiety
- Vision problems
Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
It is a complicated disorder characterized by extreme fatigue that can’t be explained by any underlying medical condition. The fatigue may worsen with physical or mental activity, but doesn’t improve with rest.
Chronic fatigue syndrome has also been called myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) and, more recently, systemic exertion intolerance disease (SEID). Although CFS/ME and SEID share the same major symptom of chronic fatigue, there is variation between the definitions of these disorders. The symptom of chronic fatigue also may arise from more than one underlying condition.
The cause of chronic fatigue syndrome is unknown, although there are many theories — ranging from viral infections to psychological stress. Some experts believe chronic fatigue syndrome might be triggered by a combination of factors.
The IT professionals commonly face this problem. The continuous work, stress of work load and night time shifts may be some of the reason why IT people suffer with CFS most.
Cervical problems /neck pain
Cervical disc disease is a condition of the cervical spine, meaning the part of spine in neck. The cervical spine is comprised of seven spinal bones, or vertebrae. These bones are separated by intervertebral discs — flexible tissue that absorbs shock and allows moving the neck with ease. Cervical disc disease affects these disks and can place stress on the nerves passing through the neck. This causes neck pain as well radiating pain to the shoulders.
Lumbar problems /back pain
Lower back supports a large portion of body weight and enables a range of movements, which means it’s also subjected to the most stress. The lumbar spine normally consists of five vertebrae that are linked by joints and cushioned by rubbery discs as in cervical region.
Due continuous abnormal sitting posture in the air conditioned room, the discs and joints lose water content and elasticity. This weakening can make the discs more susceptible to damage and herniation, while the joints can develop conditions like osteoarthritis and bone spurs. These conditions can cause both local aches and pains in the lower back as well as radiating symptoms to the extremities.
Frozen shoulder, also known as adhesive capsulitis, is a condition characterized by stiffness and pain in the shoulder joint. Signs and symptoms typically begin gradually, worsen over time and then resolve, usually within one to three years.
The risk of developing frozen shoulder increases in the IT professionals because they are sitting the same position just using their arms and fingers more, not moving much of their shoulder. The air conditioning which is cold and dry also adds to worsen the condition.
Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a medical condition due to compression of the median nerve as it travels through the wrist at the carpal tunnel. The main symptoms are pain, numbness, and tingling, in the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and the thumb side of the ring fingers. Symptoms typically start gradually and during the night. Pain may extend up the arm. Weak grip strength may occur and after a long period of time the muscles at the base of the thumb may waste away. In more than half of cases both sides are affected.
Obesity is a complex disorder involving an excessive amount of body fat. It isn’t just a cosmetic concern. It increases the risk of diseases and health problems, such as heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. IT professionals may easily get obese due to the previous said causes. High income, less physical work, stress and untimely food are the causes.
Piles, Fistula and Constipation.
The problems related to ano-rectal region is very common. The most common issue is constipation. The dryness of the air conditioning, dehydration, continuous sitting posture, physical inactivity and stress are the culprits here also. The constipation leads to all other problems like piles and fistula.
Hemorrhoids, commonly known as piles, are swollen blood vessels in or around the anus and rectum. The hemorrhoidal veins are located in the lowest part of the rectum and the anus. Sometimes they swell so that the vein walls become stretched, thin, and irritated by passing bowel movements this may lead to bleeding and pain from the anal canal.
Anal fistula is an abnormal channel or tunnel under the skin that connects the anal canal in the colon to the skin of the buttocks. Most anal fistulas form in reaction to an anal gland that has developed a pus-filled infection (abscess). The common symptoms are fever, chills, swelling, fever and pus or blood stained pus through the anal opening.
Gastro Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)/ Acidity
Gastro esophageal refers to the stomach and esophagus. Reflux means to flow back or return. Therefore, gastro esophageal reflux is the return of the stomach’s contents back up into the esophagus. In normal digestion, the lower esophageal sphincter (LES) opens to allow food to pass into the stomach and closes to prevent food and acidic stomach juices from flowing back into the esophagus. Gastro esophageal reflux occurs when the LES is weak or relaxes inappropriately, allowing the stomach’s contents to flow up into the esophagus. The previous said causes lead to GERD in IT professionals. Sometimes GERD is referred as acidity or heart burn by the people.
Infertility is the inability to conceive within one or more years of regular unprotected intercourse. It is experienced by most of the persons in IT field. The couple of which both are in the IT field seems to suffer more. Stress, physical inactivity, faulty dietary habit and many more factors are responsible for this problem.
Atherosclerosis is a condition that develops when a substance called plaque builds up in the walls of the arteries. This buildup narrows the arteries, making it harder for blood to flow through. If a blood clot forms, it can stop the blood flow. This can cause a heart attack or stroke.
A heart attack occurs when the blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked by a blood clot. If this clot cuts off the blood flow completely, the part of the heart muscle supplied by that artery begins to die. Most people survive their first heart attack and return to their normal lives to enjoy many more years of productive activity. But having a heart attack does mean that they might have to make some changes.
An ischemic stroke (the most common type) happens when a blood vessel that feeds the brain gets blocked, usually from a blood clot. When the blood supply to a part of the brain is shut off, brain cells will die. The result will be the inability to carry out some of the previous functions as before like walking or talking. A hemorrhagic stroke occurs when a blood vessel within the brain bursts. The most likely cause is uncontrolled hypertension (blood pressure).
Stress and Anxiety
Most people experience stress and anxiety from time to time. Stress is any demand placed on the brain or physical body. People can report feeling stressed when multiple competing demands are placed on them. This demand is very high in the IT field both physically and mentally. The feeling of being stressed can be triggered simply by a due work that can make a person feel frustrated or nervous.
Anxiety is a feeling of fear, worry, or unease. It can be a reaction to stress, or it can occur in people who are unable to identify significant stressors in their life. The mentally stressed people working in the IT field are more vulnerable to anxiety.
Even Stress and anxiety are not always bad. In the short term, they can help you overcome a challenge or dangerous situation. Examples of everyday stress and anxiety include worrying about finding a job, feeling nervous before a big test, or being embarrassed in certain social situations. If we did not experience some anxiety we might not be motivated to do things that we need to do. However, if stress and anxiety begin interfering with your daily life, it may indicate a more serious issue.
Migraine is a primary headache disorder characterized by recurrent headaches that are moderate to severe. Typically, the headaches affect one half of the head, are pulsating in nature, and last from 2 to 72 hours. Associated symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light, sound, or smell. The pain is generally made worse by physical activity. Up to one-third of people have an aura, typically a short period of visual disturbance which signals that the headache will soon occur. Occasionally, an aura can occur with little or no headache following it. Apart from genetic factors, stress and faulty food habits too have immense role in causing migraine.
Because of the constant glare from computers and concentrating on small words or objects may cause vision problems in IT professionals. Long sightedness (hypermetropia), short sightedness (myopia) and astigmatism are common. Astigmatism is a disease in which eye does not focus light evenly on the retina. This results in distorted or blurred vision at all distances. Other symptoms can include eyestrain, headaches, and trouble driving at night.
All these diseases can happen to those who work in the IT field. The causes are common in almost all the diseases.
Ayurveda and IT field diseases
Everyone’s body, mind and emotions experience various imbalances due to stress, poor diet and of unnatural life style. But IT people are more at risk. The prevalence of lifestyle diseases has reached alarming rates in recent years.
Ayurveda, the natural healing can help to get rid of these diseases without any side effects. It provides better solutions in the forms of proper diet advices, lifestyle advices, Panchakarma procedures for detoxification, herbal medicines and rejuvenation therapies.
Traditional Ayurvedic Treatments includes therapies like Abhyangam, , Sarvanga Dhara, Shirodhara, Thala pothichil, Netra Anjana-Seka-Tarpanas, Podikkizhi, Njavara Kizhi , Kadivasti, Greeva vasti etc.
The treatments will be performed after Consultation with an Ayurveda Physician which includes Nadi Pareeksha ( Pulse Analysis ) which is a key diagnostic method. Also physician will look for the tongue and eyes for diagnosis. A prakrithi ( Individual constitution) analysis will also be done. Then only a customized treatment plan is made. This will include a diet and regimen re-plan, the therapies needed and herbal supplements or Ayurvedic medicines.
Abhyanga or massage with appropriate oil will help to reduce inflammation, pain and swelling. Also it increases the blood flow and lymphatic drainage. The therapist will release the trigger points/ knots in the body which is commonly found in IT professionals. Also he/she will activate the marma( vital points) according to the disease.
Sarvanga dhara (dripping- full body)with will reduce the inflammation, relax the muscles and joints, strengthen the bones, energize the nerves and revitalize the body( Rasayana). It is very effective in cervical and lumbar disc degenerations.
Shirodhara ( dripping- fore head) with medicated oils or milk decoctions will activate brain centres, boosts up neurotransmitters and calm the mind. It is a wonderful stress buster too. The vision problems and migraine are also benefitted with this therapy. Thala pothichil is the covering of head with appropriate medicines in selected patients. This too has the same effect as shirodhara.
Netra Anjana is the application of selected medicines in the eyes mostly in paste form. Seka is dripping of oils or decoctions in the eyes. Tarpana is keeping of medicated ghee or oil in the eyes with the help of a boundary. Any of these treatment is selected according to the patient’s condition.
Podikkizhi ( powder pouch massage) is application of dry heat with the help of powdered medicines. It reduces the inflammation, proper flow of lymph and blood. So it helps in reducing the pain and swelling. Njavarakkizhi ( pouch prepared by cooked njavara rice) is a brilliant traditional kerala therapy. Njavara rice is a proven medicine which can absorb toxins from the body and tone up the muscles. It is very effective in frozen shoulder, carpal tunnel syndrome and disc degenerations.
Kati vasti or Greeva vasti is the keeping of heated medicated oils in lumbar or cervical area respectively. This is very effective in cervical spondylosis and lumbar spondylosis.
Panchakarma is a Sanskrit word that means “five actions” or “five treatments”. This is a process used to clean the body of toxic materials left by disease and poor nutrition. Normally the body has the innate ability to efficiently process and remove these waste materials, including the vitiated doshas. However due to one’s repeated dietary indiscretions, poor exercise patterns, lifestyle, and genetic predisposition the digestive enzymes, metabolic co-factors, hormones, and agnis which regulate the body’s internal homeostasis become disorganized. This can lead to the accumulation and spread of toxins throughout the physiology resulting in disease. This waste matter is called ama in Ayurveda. Ama is a foul-smelling, sticky, harmful substance that needs to be completely evacuated from the body.
Panchakarma will remove the excess doshas and correct imbalances in them as well as eliminate the harmful ama out of the system through the body’s own organs and channels of elimination (colon, sweat glands, lungs, bladder, urinary tract, stomach, intestines, etc.). Panchakarma purifies the tissues at a very deep level. It involves daily massages and oil baths, herbal enemas, nasal administrations, purgation or vomiting. Ayurveda recommends Panchakarma as a seasonal treatment for maintaining mental and physical hygiene and balance.
Diet and regime
Satvic diet, meditation and yoga are also part of this holistic system of Healing. So the treatment plan will also be added on with these modalities. With the correction of life style, diet and with the help of Ayurvedic treatment, most of the ailments of IT professionals can be treated successfully.