23 Mar Yoga Healing on World Tuberculosis Day
World Tuberculosis Day
The epidemic of tuberculosis (TB) is a global phenomenon. In 2012, around 8.6 million had TB and approximately 1.3 million succumb to the disease. World Tuberculosis Day witnessed on March 24, is intended to bring about public awareness about the global endemic of TB. World TB Day is marked by WHO (World Health Organization) through various awareness programmes.
Tuberculosis (TB) is a serious communicable disease that chiefly affects your lungs. A bacterium, Mycobacterium tuberculosis, causes TB. TB, when it goes undetected, can also affect other parts including kidneys, spinal cord and brain. It is a communicable disease so can spread from one person to another when they cough or sneeze through the air in the form of tiny droplets.
Common Symptoms of TB
- Persistent coughing for more than three weeks
- Coughing up of blood
- Chest pains
- Pain with breathing
- Loss of appetite, Unintentional weight loss
- Fever, Night Sweats
Treatment of TB is allied to the type of TB infection. Often it requires treatments with one or more anti-TB drugs for months under Physicians observation. This is should not be ignored.
Yoga is a preventive science and does not claim to cure TB. Yoga does aid the healing processes along with prescribed medications. Please check with your physician before you practice Yoga.
Recommended Yoga practices that help allay TB symptoms
Yoga kriya will help to clean the upper respiratory tract and the sinuses. The breathing exercise or pranayama induce relaxation and help to reduce the stress levels of the patients considerably.
Yoga Kriya-Yogendra Kapalabhati; the cleansing breath.
This kriya has immense benefits. The entire facial region is purified and energized. Kapala is the entire face, especially the forehead – the frontal lobe. ‘Bhati’ literally means ‘shining’. Its practice brings a glow and radiance to the face! This technique has been uniquely modified at The Yoga Institute, wherein a vigorous movement of the stomach is not practised. This makes it beneficial to all, without any complications.
Starting position: Sit or stand firmly, with the spine, neck and head held erect. Take a few normal breaths and relax.
Method: Inhale and exhale sharply, forcefully and quickly using the muscles of the throat, without contorting the facial muscles. Avoid flaring the nostrils and ensure there is minimal movement in the body. The friction caused by the sharp breaths will create moderate sounds. Ensure the breaths are short, sharp and forceful. Inhalation and exhalation should be equal (and follow each other without a break). Do 10-15 cycles to complete 1 round.
Limitations & Contraindications: None – can be safely practised by all.
Benefits: Purifies the frontal air sinuses. Flushes out stale residual air in the lungs. Cleanses the nasal passages and the upper respiratory tract. Experience lightness in the forehead and facial region. Removes excess phlegm in the sinus and nasal passages.
Yogendra Pranayama-Bhastrika; bellows breath.
The Sanskrit word Bhastrika means ‘bellows’. Just as the bellows fan the fire; this Pranayama increases the flow of air into the body to generate heat at both the physical and subtle level–stoking the inner fire of mind and body.
Starting position: Do preliminary conditioning in Sukhasana or any other meditative posture. Sit on a firm chair with an erect backrest, if unable to sit on the floor. Keep the body above the waist straight and the spine erect.
Method: Take in a deep breath and breathe out forcefully through the nose, without any strain. Immediately, breathe in with the same force. Inhale and exhale repeatedly, deeply and fully, using the diaphragmatic muscles with vigour. The abdomen moves out during inhalation, while the diaphragm descends. The converse happens while exhaling. The above movements should be slightly exaggerated. A strong nasal sound will accompany such breathing. The process should be rhythmic and controlled, maintaining the speed as per capacity. Do ten cycles to complete 1 round.
Recommended practice : Practice 3 rounds/session, with pause in-between rounds. Should be practised on an empty stomach, after evacuation in the morning.
Limitations / Contraindications: Heart ailments, hypertension, high BP, fever, vertigo, pregnancy, abdominal disorders, spinal abnormalities and eye ailments e.g. like a detached retina, glaucoma.
Benefits: Favourable effect on the respiratory and digestive system. Drains excess phlegm from the lungs. Oxygenates the blood increasing the vitality of all the organs and tissues. Strengthens and tones the abdominal region. Calms the mind. Energizes the entire body and mind.
Adopting Yogic Diet helps. Some suggestions
- Balanced Sattvik Diet and home cooked meals. Include whole grains and organic foods in your daily diet.
- Include seasonal vegetables and fresh fruits in your daily diet
- Avoid processed, refined and fast foods
- Avoid intake of alcohol and tobacco products.
Spread the Yoga cognisance on World Tuberculosis Day and reap the multiple benefits.
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Source for TB numbers http://www.who.int/en/