By Dr. Dipti Kapare Counsellor & Psychotherapist- Ayurveda, Psychology
Today’s most commonly searched keywords are “Anxiety or Depression or Stress”. Why these terms suddenly becoming important in our life? The reason may be factors like our disordered lifestyle, the influence of modern gadgets, excessive use of the internet, social media, junk foods, nuclear family, environment, toxin accumulation, exercise levels and many more.
If we try to understand these mental health disorders in a layman’s language;
- Anxiety /fear is a mental disturbance caused by overthinking about “Future”, eg - Fear about exams, interviews, job security, maintaining a relationship, marriage, career, financial risks etc.
- Stress/Tension is a mental disturbance caused by overthinking about “Present”, eg- achieving goal, commitments, pressure to meet schedules, race against time etc.
- Depression/Worry is a mental disturbance caused by overthinking about “Past”, ex: failure in exams, relationship failure, death in the family, loss of money /business etc.
- As the body and mind are interconnected, such emotional disturbance can easily influence body functions by creating health issues and dysfunctions. In medical terms, such disease is called as “psychosomatic diseases”.
In Ayurveda, these mental factors are directly linked with the characteristics of 5 energy elements of the universe in the name of Vata (Space and Air), Pitta (Fire and Water) and Kapha (Water and Earth) called as Tridosha. Tridhosa is the driving forces behind everything happening from creation to death at atomic to cosmic level in this universe.
How this Tridosha influence Body and Mind
1. Vata - A movement principle exhibits the qualities of Air/Wind in the characteristics of an individual like creativity, artistry, energetic, inspiration, enthusiasm, intuitive behaviours. But if the air energy is imbalanced they show up nervousness, anxiety, fearfulness, weirdness, manic, insecurity, negative dreams, suicidal behaviours. Similarly, at the body level, it causes sleeplessness, insomnia, headache, palpitation, tiredness, joint pain, constipation etc.
2. Pitta - A transformation principle exhibits the qualities of Fire/Sun in the characteristic of an individual like leadership, commanding, ambitious, Sharpness, clear thoughts. But if imbalanced, it displays stress, anger, hypertension, irritation, judgmental, controlling, violent behaviours. Similarly, at the body level, it causes acidity, heartburn, skin irritation, blood pressure, excessive hunger, thirst, fever etc.
3. Kapha – A stability and cohesive principle exhibits the quality of water/ Moon in the characteristic of an individual like patience, generosity, peacefulness, nurturing, love, loyalty, compassionate behaviours. But if imbalanced, it displays depression, worry, stubbornness, possessiveness, holding grudges, attachment to objects, selfish characters. Similarly, at the body level, it causes slow digestion, nauseousness, obesity, dullness, lethargy, water retention etc.
According to Ayurveda, health is not merely considered to be a state of freedom from ailments or diseases, but rather a state of enjoying uninterrupted physical, mental and spiritual happiness and fulfilment. Ayurveda considers any treatment with a holistic approach to cure both body and mind.
So Ayurveda approach for treating such mental imbalance would be, a combination of any of the below mention solution based on the individual’s body and mind constitutions analysis.
1. Adopting Daily Routine or Lifestyle Change
2. Taste and Dietary Recommendation
3. Sefl therapies/Oil Massages/Abhyanga and Shirodhara Treatment
4. Yoga and Meditation
5. Herbal Supplements
6. Ayurveda Medicine
7. Panchakarma treatment, Detoxification Therapy
All these solutions can also be followed by a healthy individual also if he wants to balance his body and mind in a natural way.