Muscle relaxants are drugs that relieve muscle spasm as noticed in back pain. They are mainly used in the treatment of neuro-muscular disorders such as multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, stoke or any other traumatic condition. Muscle stiffness, convulsions and strains are also treated with these drugs as pain killers. Ayurvedic treatment uses herbal medicines prepared using natural ingredients and are safe as they do not have side effects. The system gets down to the root cause of the disease and finds proper solutions through different therapies and processes so that the disturbance in the balance of energies inside and outside the body is restored.
Types of muscle relaxants
Muscle relaxants are of two types, one working centrally and the other acting peripherally. Some muscle relaxants are used as anesthetics too. The use is decided on the basis of the condition of the patient. They are used in the rehabilitation therapy of most of the muscular and skeletal disorders.
Ayurveda has classified the muscle relaxants into many different types and given specific names to each. Vedhanasthak medicines are generally pain killers, Shulaghan that have high potency and Adyavatahara that work as anti convulsion and such complications. All other drugs that are used in the treatment of stroke, tetanus and complications involving convulsions caused by pathological and physiological reasons have muscle relaxant properties.
How and when they are used
The Ayurvedic muscle relaxants have the effect that is obtained from the combination of painkillers, muscle relaxants and sometimes tranquilizers too. The Ayurvedic text dealing with stroke and treatment of other such conditions speak of Vaatshamak chikitsa and masam meaning muscle tendons and meda (fat) and updhathu and so on. Ayurveda recommends panchkarma therapy in the case of treating neuromuscular disorders and other spasmodic conditions and stroke.
Some Muscle Relaxants in Ayurveda
Gaduchyadi gana is a specific group of medicines specially prepared for the masam dhatu gat dushti, the diseases affecting the muscle and tendons. Ayurvedic antispasmodic drugs include nimba, gaduchi, rakta chandan, padmakha and dhanyaka. The mineral based drugs are Brhita vata, chaturmukharasa, chintamani, makardhwaja, yogendra rasa, Rasasindoor, Kasturibhairav rasa and Vatachintamani.etc.
The Ayurvedic drugs that are widely used for relieving pain from Vedhanashtapak category are adraka, ashoka, eal, mocharasa, katphala, kaadamb, tunga, sahal and shirish. Some medicines that are used orally for their anesthetic effect are Bhanga, Madhya, Ahiphena, Jatamansi, Lamgali teekshna-sura, and tagar that use kashaya rasa. Their properties are Laghu, Ushna, vishad, vyavyai, teekshna and ruksha. In some cases guggul preparations and asava and aristha are effectively used such as balarishta, ashwagandharishta and draksharishta.
Ayurvedic treatment of muscle disorders are not confined to medicines alone. Other treatments like Abhyanga, the massage therapy and inhalation, diet and enema namely basti along with hot and cold sweating methods. Most of the muscle relaxants are used in the treatment called ‘sneham’ which means lubrication and in the process of swedan which is fomentation therapy with medicated oils and decoctions. Amlavetas are drugs that are excellent muscle relaxants and used in treating muscular disorders successfully. Ayurveda treatment also includes Pradeha and Pralepa processes for muscle disorders.