Wednesday, May 18, 2022 | Shawwal 16, 1443 H
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Bonds of herbal healing



Did you know that the commonly seen herbs in Oman like Aavanakku, Erandam, Erukku, Datura or Muringa are used in Ayurvedic medicines?

Ayurveda, considered by many scholars to be the oldest healing science, has found its way in the Sultanate and is becoming increasingly popular among Omanis.

While the commonly noticed Senna leaves are used as a laxative, the Muringa leaves are used in many medicines and externally for Elakizhi. The bark of the Muringa tree is also used externally and has anti-inflammatory properties.

Because of its geographical location, the Sultanate has a diverse medical history, having been influenced by Indian Hakim and Ayurvedic therapeutics.

The country has a long and varied history due to its location along trade routes connecting Africa, India and the Arabian Peninsula. Certain herbs used in Ayurveda are also seen in many parts of Dhofar and Jabal Al Akhdhar.

A large number of Omanis and expatriates are taking Ayurvedic treatment in Oman and Kerala.

A senior travel consultant, Sadiq bin Adnan al Lawati, had been suffering from severe neck and shoulder pain. After undergoing Ayurvedic treatment through their oil massage at the Centre, he is a much-relieved man. He is indebted to Arya Vaidya Sala Kottakkal for their cause to promote traditional Indian medicines in Oman.

Nasser bin Mubarak al Sinani, who works with Omantel, and Fatima bint Nasser al Mukhaini, a homemaker, have been successful with their therapy treatments at the Ayurvedic Centre

Ayurveda is widely accepted in Oman and for the last 30 years Omani citizens have been traveling to Arya Vaidya Sala Kottakkal for various treatments including paralysis, arthritis, and other ailments.

Approximately 10 to 15 per cent of total Omanis travelling to Kerala for medical purposes are for alternative treatments.

Indian system of medicine Ayurveda is beneficial in many ways, especially the traditional Ayurvedic therapy and herbal medicines. Omani people look forward to the traditional therapy and herbs which help them in most of the musculoskeletal diseases, neurological diseases and skin diseases.

Dr Dhanya Umanath, a senior doctor at Kottakkal Ayurvedic Centre, Hamriya, says “Authentic Ayurvedic therapies like Elakizhi Kizhi, Pizhichil and Podikizhi are very effective for treating muscular and joint issues and degenerative diseases. These include cervical spondylosis and lumbar spondylosis, degenerative disc diseases of cervical and lumbar region which is very common due to lifestyle and postural issues.”

She says Ayurvedic therapies are very effective and every treatment is done after proper consultation with doctors. Dr Padmagiriesan from the Kottakkal Centre, Suhar branch, says “Omani citizens have great faith in Indian system of medicines and they strictly follow the diet and lifestyle modifications recommended. Due to COVID-19, many people were not travelling and preferred to get the treatments at the centres in Oman.”

All the investigation results like MRI and X-ray are studied before starting any therapy. Patients who need complete rest and therapy are sent to Arya Vaidya Sala Kottakkal, Kerala, for treatment

Oman is one of the few Arabian Gulf countries in which traditional medicines like native plants, aromatic gums, heavy, honey, wasam, hijama, religious therapy and prophetic medicine have survived modernisation.

Ayurveda mentions types of heat therapy similar to Wasam Aginikarma in all classical textbooks and some of them are still being practiced.

Hijama, or popularly known as ‘Wet Cupping’, is widely practiced in Oman. Ayurveda also has different bloodletting therapies like Prachannam or Leaching.

Majority of Omani traditional treatments include lime, honey and garlic as herbal additives for treating wounds, common cold, throat infections, diabetes and obesity.

Some of the herbs like Senna leaves, Datura stramonium (Thorn apple), shade plant medicines from Sloanacea family are used in Omani medicines too.

In the early 90s, a registered Ayurvedic clinic was launched in Oman. Since then many reputed Ayurvedic companies from Kerala have their franchise in Oman like Arya Vaidya Sala Kottakkal, Kerala, which started in Al Hamriya, Ruwi, in 2004.

Padamsree Vaidyaratnam P K Warrier, chief physician and managing trustee, inaugurated the centre.

In 2008, Kottakkal Ayurvedic Centre opened their second branch in Suhar.

As the Kottakkal Ayurvedic Centre Ruwi celebrated its 16th anniversary on December 25, the staff is filled with pride in their efforts to make Ayurvedic medicines and therapies successful and popular.

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