Shirovasti: Indications, Benefits, Procedure, Limitations

Article by Dr Raghuram Y.S. MD (Ay)
‘Roof is the most important part of our home’. It protects us from extremes of weather. We cannot expect to live in a house with 4 walls on a strong foundation, without a roof.

What we have all noticed during the construction of a house is the curing of roof. This is a very important step in the construction of roof. If the roof has to be strong and protective, water has to be stored on it for certain number of days after its construction has been completed. For this, the engineers build small cabins of concrete over the roof and store water within them. The water is filled as it gets evaporated or disintegrated. If this is not done the roof will not be strong enough.
Think about a similar method of making the roof of our body ‘the head’ strong!!

Head is an important organ of our body. The whole administrative setup is located within this head. All the activities of our living are governed from here. We need to keep our head strong and healthy for the entire system to be fit and healthy.

In Ayurveda, we have an excellent treatment procedure which looks like and serve the same purpose of ‘water cabin over the roof’. In this we build a similar compartment over the head of the patient (can be done as a preventive treatment in healthy people too) and fill it up with different kinds of herbal oils to strengthen the head and its components.

This also cures many diseases and prevents many psychosomatic diseases apart from providing unparalleled relaxation from stress and strain of life. This treatment is called Shiro Vasti or Shiro Basti. In this article we shall try to learn about this wonderful treatment and its benefits.

Yes! Let us know about Shirovasti, which is a highly effective treatment from the leafs of Ayurvedic wisdom which makes the person undergoing it strong and immune, physically and mentally such that he or she can tolerate the extremes of life including diseases, stress etc, can overcome their health related issues, remain ageless, fell-good, look-good and obtain the armor of prevention to many psycho-somatic illnesses.

This pampering not only provides relaxation to body and mind, it also keeps many diseases and stress at bay. It makes us competent enough to face the toughness of day-to-day life with ease. It is just like servicing and over-oiling the body and mind on a regular basis. Healthy people can also have it once in a year or 2 to rejuvenate themselves and update their health status.

ShiroVasti is so soothing that it is better experienced than explained. By providing the lubrication to the wheel of the body, it enables us to spin ourselves at will while enjoying our life activities. It enhances the life span of each and every cell, regulates metabolism, and keeps us fit healthy and immune.

Shiro Basti is one of the treatments of Ayurveda which serves both purposes i.e. curing the ailments and preventing the impending diseases.

What is Shiro Vasti?

Shirovasti or Shiro Vasti is a word comprising of 2 terms, Shiro meaning head, Vasti meaning pooling of herbal oils and or medicated liquids on the head

Thus ShiroVasti means pooling the liquid medicines, especially herbal oils and or ghee in a chamber or compartment constructed over the head.

Synonyms – Shiro Basti (Vasti also means Basti, both mean ‘to stay’, here the liquid medicines stay within the walls of the constructed compartment)

Category of Shiro Vasti / Shiro basti
Shiro Vasti is a procedure which is included in the category of Murdhni Taila (various methods of applying oil over the head). It is a type of Bahya Snehana (using of oil and conducting treatments over the body, externally).
It can also be selectively brought in as a treatment option for many Vata related disorders and disorders affecting the head & sense organs and for control and prevention of many psychosomatic disorders.

Why Shirobasti?

Ayurveda considers the human body as an inverted tree wherein the roots are at the top and the branches pointing downwards.

If the human body is considered to be a tree –
The head of the human body will be considered to be the roots of this tree,
The central portion of the body made up of thorax and abdomen is said to be the trunk of this tree and
The limbs (upper and lower) are considered to be the branches of this tree

Just like the roots nurture and controls all the activities and well being of the tree, the head is the operational center of the entire body. The head comprises of all the components and machinery to control the entire body mechanics and dynamics.

Head is an abode of the remote control of the entire body – ‘The Brain and nerves’ and all the components which keep us attached and attracted to this material world – ‘The Sense Organs’. For these reasons, the head is called as ‘Uttamanga’ – ‘The best organ of the lot in the body’

The head is made up of brain and sense organs which manipulates the whole body and mind functions and keep us healthy when they are in a frame of well being. Head thus forms a control station for all our life activities. When we take care of the control station properly, the whole body factory will function smoothly.

On the other hand, to get rid of any body or mind related illness we need to go back to the control station (uttamanga) called head and address it with suitable treatments and medications.

This also gives us an impression that the most ancient science called Ayurveda very well knew that most of our diseases occur due to disturbed mind or exacerbated by a disturbed mind. Healing the body or mind alone is not a comprehensive medical approach. They should be handled as a single entity.

Since taking care of the head and its components is mandatory for maintaining a healthy life we need to nurture, pamper, relax, soothe and strengthen the engine of our system by conducting Shiro Abhyanga and other treatments mentioned in Moordha Taila or Murdhni Taila.

Murdhni taila

Brief introduction of Murdhni Taila –
Moordha or Murdhni means Head, Taila means oil or herbal oil
Thus Murdhni Taila or Moordha Taila is a procedure of conducting treatments on the head using herbal (medicated) oils such that the oil remains in contact with the scalp for a fixed duration of time. This contact period of oil on the scalp is necessary for begetting its benefits. Murdha Taila is also practiced as a part of Dinacharya (daily regimen).
Read related: Moordha Taila, Murdhni Taila: Ayurvedic Oil Treatment On Head

Shirobasti indications

Indications of Shirobasti –
ShiroBasti treatment is advised for prevention of many psychosomatic disorders. Prevention of diseases pertaining to body, mind and sense organs is the first indication of Shiro Vasti.

Indications of Shiro Dhara (Shiro Vasti) –
Below mentioned are the indications of Shiro Dhara (in general). The same are the benefits of Shiro Vasti.

Aroomshikaa shiraha toda daaha paaka vraneshu tu
Parisheka… (Ref – Ashtanga Hridaya Sutra 22/24)
Arumshika – Boils in the head (scalp)
Shiro Toda – Pricking pain in the head
Shiro Daha – Burning sensation in the head
Shiro Paka – Suppuration in the head (inflammation leading to formation of pus or pus pockets)
Shiro Vrana – Boils wounds or ulcers in the head

Shiro vireka seka aadi sarva visarpa nrut cha yat (Ref – Charaka Siddhi 9/73)
Shankaka – Acharya Charaka (ancient Ayurveda physician and teacher) mentions Shiro Seka (Synonymous with Shiro dhara) as one of the remedy for Shankaka Shira Shula (Headache afflicting the temple regions)

Paitte Ghritam payaha sekaaha lepaaha sa naavanaaha (Ref – Charaka Chikitsa 26/176)
Pittaja Shira Shula – In headaches caused due to morbid (vitiated) Pitta, Shiro Seka (Shiro Dhara) shall be done with medicated ghee. The same benefits can be obtained by conducting ShiroVasti in these conditions. Medicated oils and or ghee shall be used in this treatment.

Shiro Vasti is used to treat many diseases occurring due to Shiro Abhihata or damage to the head and its components either from exterior injuries or due to morbid doshas from within.

Shiro abhighata

Consequence of head injury (Shiro abhihata) –
Shirasya abhihate manyaastambha ardita chakshu vibhrama moha udveshtana cheshtaa naasha kaasa shvaasa hanugraha muka gadgadatva akshi nimeelana ganda spandana jrumbhana laalaasraava svarahaani vadana jihmatvaadeeni (Ref- Charaka Siddhi Sthana 9/5)
When the head gets injured it causes one or the other of –
Manyastambha – Stiffness of neck, nape (Cervical spondylosis, torticollis)
Ardita – Facial paralysis, Bells Palsy
Chakshu vibhrama – Deviation of eye, squint
Moha – Loss of consciousness
Udveshtana – cramps
Cheshta nasha – Loss of activities
Kasa – Cough
Shwasa – Dyspnoea, breathlessness
Hanugraha – Lock jaw
Mooka – Dumb
Gadgadatva – Stammering of speech
Akshi nimeelana – Difficulty in opening the eyes
Ganda spandana – Pulsating sensation or pulsations or twitching in the cheeks
Jrumbha – Yawning
Lala srava – salivation
Svara hani – Total loss of voice
Mukha Jihmata – crookedness of the face etc

Other indications –
Shiro Roga / Shira Shula – Different types of headaches and diseases pertaining to head
Pakshaghata – Hemiplegia, paralysis
Anidra – sleeplessness
Vata prakopa – to control the vitiated Vata
Vata Roga – diseases of Vata origin, mainly degenerative diseases
Pitta Roga – diseases of Pitta origin, mainly inflammatory diseases
Shiro rukshata – dryness of the head
Shiro kandu – itching in the scalp etc
Raktagata Vata – Hypertension
Palitya – Premature graying of hairs
Klama – Tiredness, fatigue
Dosha kopa – Aggravation of Doshas
Ojakshaya – Low immunity
Kara-charana parisphotanam – Cracks and fissures in the hands (palm) and foot (sole)
Mutradosham – Urinary disorders
Sandhi shaitilya – Laxity and loss of integrity of joints (fragile joints)
Hridroga – Heart diseases
Agnimandhya – Sluggish metabolism
Aruchi – Tastelessness / Anorexia
Karna roga – Diseases of the ear
Netra roga – Diseases of the eye
Kitibha / Ekakushta – Psoriasis
Ardhavabhedaka / Suryavarta – Hemicrania / Migraine headache
Smriti Nasha – Loss of memory / Alzheimer’s disease
Khalitya – Hair loss and hair fall
Darunaka – Dandruff
Madhumeha janya Vataroga (Vataja Prameha) – Diabetic neuropathy
Pakshaghata – Paralysis
Avasada – Depression

Procedure

Shiro Basti Procedure, How to do?
Shiro Basti is done in the below said method –

Purvakarma

Purvakarma (Pre-treatment procedures): This includes –
Preparation of the patient:
The patient is thoroughly examined using Ayurvedic tools and methods of examination. The Prakriti (basic constitution) and Vikriti (details of morbidity) are documented in detail. The disease is also examined with the help of Ayurvedic parameters of diagnosis (and also modern investigations as and when required). After careful assessment, it is decided if Shiro Basti is suitable to the disease and diseased or not. The treatment line-up, materials and medicines which need to be used are enlisted.

The patient is advised to shave the head (according to their convenience) or make it as short as possible. Shiro Vasti done after removal of hairs will yield better results than done with hair intact.

Preparation for the treatment:
Materials needed for the treatment are collected beforehand. They are:
Taila (herbal oils) and Ghrita (medicated ghee) for Shirovasti –
The basic materials needed for Shiro Vasti (oil pooling over the head) are herbal oils and or medicated ghee. The oil shall be sesame oil (unless specified), coconut oil or any herbal oil.

The procedure is to prepare the medicated oil (oil processed with herbal decoctions) according to the constitution of the patient or the nature of morbidity.

It is not practical to prepare medicines instantly now days as all raw materials are not available at a given point of time nor any pharmacy equipped with all the raw materials needed to prepare various medicated oils.

In these cases the doctor should judiciously plan and short list a few oils mentioned in the classics which can be generally used in many conditions. These medicines shall be prepared in the pharmacy or hospital.

Alternatively, the medicines (medicated oils) are readily available in bottled forms now days. They shall be collected before hand and the stocks of the same shall be maintained.

The oils shall be – Prakriti (constitution) specific, Vikriti (morbidity or nature of disease) specific and Dosha (involved dosha) specific.

The below mentioned oils are usually preferred for conducting Shiro Vasti –
Tila tailam – sesame oil
Ksheerabala Tailam
Bala Tailam
Brahmi Tailam
Chandanabala Lakshadi Tailam
Mahamasha Tailam
Yashtimadhu tailam
Dhanwantaram Tailam
Balashwagandhadi Tailam
Karpasasthyadi Tailam etc

Doctors can do the permutations and combinations of choice of medicine and their subtypes based on their wisdom and experience. Different oils can be mixed and used depending on the practical experience and judgement of the physician.

Shiro Basti can also be done in healthy individuals. In predominance of Vata, Kapha or Vata-Kapha morbidity or diseases caused due to them, warm or hot oil should be used. In case of Pitta predominance or Pitta disorders, cold oils made lukewarm should be used.

In Pitta disorders, warm oil or ghee can be used for Shirovasti. Oil and or ghee shall be used in predominance of Vata, In morbidity wherein vitiated pitta and rakta (blood) are associated, ghee shall be used for pooling, Tila taila (sesame oil) should be used in Kapha disorders, In disorders caused by vitiated Vata, Pitta and Rakta – oil and ghee should be mixed in equal proportions to conduct Shiro Vasti. In Kapha association oil and ghee should be taken in 1:1/2 proportions.

Ghrita’s for Shiro Vasti – They can be used individually or mixed with medicated oils (tailas) in varying proportions as suggested and planned by the consulting doctor. Medicated ghee is used for pooling over the head in cases of Pitta and or Rakta (blood) vitiation and the diseases having their origin from them. Plain ghee of cow can also be used.

The below said Ghrita’s (medicated ghee) are usually used for Shiro-Vasti:
Ashwagandha Ghrita
Brahmi Ghrita
Saraswatha Ghrita
Ghrita Manda
Murchita Ghrita etc
Note – Usually in clinical practices only medicated oils are used for Shiro Vasti.

Points to note –
In Vata predominance or Vata disorders – the medicines shall be used lukewarm, the oil or ghee should have been prepared from herbs having ushna virya (hot potency)

In Pitta and or Rakta vitiation and disorders caused by them – cold medicines (medicines having sheeta virya or cold potency) shall be used but in lukewarm state

In Vata vitiation only Tila Taila (sesamum oil) can be used
In Pitta and or Rakta vitiation – plain Ghrita (ghee) can be used

Shiro Vasti apparatus –
The Shiro-Vasti apparatus comprises of a vertical cap made up of leather. The cap should be such that it could easily fit on over the head of the patient, just like a cap. Now days these caps are readily available, ready to use. But the classical procedure is that we need to get a leather sheet prepared from sterilized leather.

Dimensions of the leather sheet used for Shiro Vasti – The length of the sheet should be approximately 12 angulas (9 inches approximately). This would be the vertical part (height of the cap) when inserted on the head. The horizontal part or width of the sheet should be at least twice or two and half times that of the height i.e. 18-22.5 inches approximately. The breadth of the sheet is more because it has to be tied all around the head so as to form a cap like structure.

Advantages of following the classical method instead of using ready-made caps –
Ready-made ShiroVasti caps are sophistication. But they might just carry a disadvantage. There are people of different head dimensions.

The cap of same dimension doesn’t fit on to the head of everyone. If the cap doesn’t fit on to the head properly, the cap creates gaps and there is a chance of oozing or dripping of oil from the gaps, thus interrupting the treatment procedure. It is not practical to collect many caps of different dimensions and have a stock of it.

Instead of the readymade one, the leather sheet serves the purpose in a better way. This is because the cap can be constructed then and there itself.

Precautions before using the leather strip or sheet –
The material should have been made out of good quality leather.
The leather sheet should have been prepared from uncontaminated, disinfected and sterile leather.
The leather should not be too thin or too thick
The leather sheet should not tough as it needs to be bent and twisted around the head
The material should not have perforations or torn areas
The margins of the material should be fine and trimmed and should not be having ragged edges
The material should not have odd odor and should be attractively finished

Other materials required –
Paste of black gram – Black gram flour is mixed with water and kneaded to form a soft bolus. This is used for sealing the junction of the leather cap or leather sheet with the head, to avoid small gaps and dribbling of oil during the treatment procedure.

Sterile bandage cloth: To bind the leather cap or sheet around the head so as to hold it in position. Threads can be alternatively used.

Cotton pads – Sterile cotton may be needed to remove the residual oil from within the cap after the treatment (by soaking it) and also to wipe the oil from the scalp after removal of cap.

A comfortable chair of one’s knee height for the patient to be seated

A stove: To warm the medicine (oil and or ghee)
Steel vessels: 2 in number for preparation of the medicines needed for dhara.
2 small vessels
Large Spoons – 2 in number, pour and remove the oil
Sterile clothes: (For wiping after treatment) Sterile clothes, sponges, napkins or tissue papers for wiping etc
Chair / Stools: For the Doctor / attendants to be seated
Man Power: If the doctor himself is conducting the treatment he may need 1 or 2 assistants to help him in the procedure. Even otherwise a minimum of 2 people would be needed to carry on the treatment in an uninterrupted way.

Administration of Shodhana (purificatory treatments) –
According to Acharya Vagbhata (ancient Ayurvedic teacher and physician) the below mentioned treatments should be given before carrying on the Shiro Vasti treatment procedure. They are –

Snehana – internal administration of medicated ghee and or oil in metered increasing doses until the point of saturation as decided by the symptoms of proper oleation (samyak snigdha laxanas) are obtained.

Abhyanga and Swedana – external application of medicated oils followed by massage and steaming therapy (sweat inducing) is carried out following the Samyak Snigdha Lakshanas (signs and symptoms of properly done snehana)

Vamana and Virechana – Therapeutic Emesis and purgation are given after Snehana and Swedana procedures. If there is high Kapha morbidity in the body, Vamana or emesis is preferred. If there is high Pitta morbidity, Virechana or purgation is administered. If Vamana and Virechana both are planned to be administered, they are sequentially administered one after the other.

The above said treatment procedures help in purification of the body and detoxifying each and every cell. Shiro Vasti is said to provide its best results when done after Shodhana (evacuation or purification treatments) as mentioned above.

Thus Snehana, Swedana, Vamana and or Virechana are conducted as a part of pre-treatment procedures for Shiro Vasti.

Pradhana Karma

Pradhana Karma – Treatment proper (Shiro Vasti procedure):
Swasthi Vachana (welfare prayers) –
The patient or the person who is supposed to take Shiro Vasti is brought into the treatment room after having conducted Prayers, worship and holistic rituals and recitation of hymns as indicated in Ayurveda texts. This is done for the welfare of the patient and for the success of the treatment.

The patient should have undressed to their convenience. Alternatively they may be allowed to wear a thin dress (after having conducted massage)

The main procedure will be done as said below:
Patient examination on the day of treatment:
On the day of the treatment vital parameters should be examined viz pulse reading, BP recording, conjunctiva, temperature etc. interrogation regarding the recently developed complaints if any should be done.

The treatment shall be suspended or postponed in case of presence of complaints like cold, congestion, weakness or fatigue, fever, jaundice, menstrual periods in women or any other serious complaints or the exacerbation of the same on the day of treatment.

A treatment protocol should be maintained. Important findings and changes should be noted on a daily basis throughout the length of the treatment procedure.

The main procedure of Shiro Basti shall be carried over after confirming that the patient is absolutely fit to undergo the same.

Shuddaakta svinna dehasya dina ante gavya maahisham
Dwaadasha angula visteernam charma pattam shirasaha samam
Aakarna bandhanam sthaanam lalaate vastra veshtite
Chaila venikayaa baddhaa maasha kalkena lepayet
Tato yathaa vyaadhi shrutam sneham koshnam nishechayet
Oordhwa kasha bhoosho yaavat dvi angulam dhaarayet cha tam (Ref – Ashtanga Hridaya Sutra, 22/26-19)
Placement of patient –
The patient who has undergone Snehana, Swedana and purification treatments Vamana and Virechana should be made to sit comfortably on a chair of his knee height with his feet totally resting on the floor. If the patient is short for the chair, a foot rest shall be provided. If the patient is tall, the seat shall be elevated.

A chair whose height can be adjusted is the best option to have in the treatment room. The patient should sit on the chair facing east or north (According to Ayurveda, the direction in which a treatment or medicine is administered will also add to the effect of the results).

Placement or construction of Shiro Vasti cap –
The doctor or the therapist (chief masseur) conducting the treatment should take the leather sheet and tie it around the head of the patient in the form of a cap. The lower border of the sheet should go around the head passing above the ears. The position of the constructed cap is re-checked for its position.

The leather sheet is now standing on the head like a cap, it is in the shape of a cylinder with 2 open circular ends, the lower circular end sits on the head in close contact and the upper circle lies 12 angula’s away from the upper part of the ear.

With the help of another attendant, the Masha Pishti or black gram flour paste should be used to seal the junction of the cap with the scalp both inside and outside. This paste acts like a strong adhesive and doesn’t allow the oil poured in the cap during the treatment to leak or dribble down.

After this, the sterile bandage is wound around the lower area of the cap in contact with the head 7-8 times and the free ends knotted in front of the forehead or over the upper border of the ear (left or right). This arrangement will make sure that the cap is held tight and straight in position and it doesn’t slip away from its place. Alternatively the ready-made cap can be fit on the head of the patient.

Now with the cap fit on his or her head the patient is ready to undergo Shiro Vasti treatment.

Heating the oil and or ghee –
Procedure of heating the liquid –
The herbal oils and or ghee used for ShiroBasti should not be heated directly on fire. The medicine is taken in a small bowl. Another big vessel should be filled with water, kept on fire (stove) and heated until it boils. The small bowl consisting of the medicine should be placed over the boiling water. The medicine should be allowed to get warm passively. The bowl should be removed after checking the temperature of the medicine with the help of sterile fingers and after making sure that it is warm.

Conducting the procedure of Shiro Vasti:
After having tested the temperature of the oil, it is slowly poured into the construction of the cap. Care should be taken so as to not pour the oil directly over the scalp of the patient; instead it should be slowly poured along the inner wall of the construction using large spoons. The medicine slowly drains down towards the scalp and gets collected over the head.

After every few minutes the temperature of the oil in the cap should be checked. The oil and or ghee should never be allowed to cool down. Once the oil loses its temperature, it is again removed from the cap using spoons, put back into the small vessel and passively heated. Again the warm oil is poured back into the constructed cap. This procedure is repeated until the stipulated time duration fixed for the completion of the treatment has finished.

The oil should stand to a height of 2 angulas (1 ½ inches approximately) over the scalp.

The patient should be instructed not to shake his head during the course of the treatment. He or she should not be allowed to talk, laugh or sleep.

If any leakage of oil is seen from the construction, the oil should be completely removed and the gap once again sealed with paste of black gram flour.

There should be an attendant or 2 to help the main masseur or doctor in heating and removing the oil.

Change of medicine:
The oil or ghee shall also be changed once in 3 days. Generally the oil used on first day is used for 3 days. This oil is stored in a bottle or vessel. On 4th day fresh oil is taken. This oil is used for Parisheka unto 6th day. On 7th day, both this oil is mixed with the oil used for first 3 days and Shiro Vasti is carried out.

Again on the 8th day fresh oil is taken for the treatment. For best results of the treatment, the oil should be changed on daily basis. Since the medicinal oils will be very costly and will add on to the cost of the treatment, everyone can not afford to get it changed every day.

When the same oil is used on 2nd day or 3rd day, the sweat and dirt of the body too gets mixed in the oil which may lessen its efficacy. For those who cannot afford the cost of the treatment, the same oil can be continued for 7 days.

Duration of the treatment –
In Vata Disorders or Vata vitiation – 10000 matra kala (approximately 53 minutes)
In Pitta disorders or Pitta vitiation – 8000 matra kala (approximately 43 minutes)
In Kapha disorders or Kapha vitiation – 6000 matra kala (approximately 31 minutes)
In Swastha or healthy individuals – 1000 matra kala (approximately 5-6 minutes)

But the indicator of the completion of duration of Shiro Vasti procedure is appearance of symptoms like – vaktra kleda (discharges from the mouth) and Nasika utkleda (discharges from the nose). When these symptoms are found, the treatment should be stopped.

Paschat karma

Paschat Karma of Shiro Vasti (Post-treatment procedures and follow up): 
Removal of the oil – after the completion of stipulated duration of treatment or after obtaining the signs of completion like discharges from mouth and nose, the oil is slowly removed with the help of spoon. Residual oil is absorbed using sterile cotton and squeezed back into the vessel containing the removed oil. This is done with an intention of not wasting the medicine.

Removal of cap – after the oil has been removed completely, the knot of the bandage cloth tied around the lower end of the cap is removed. The bandage cloth is removed. The flour paste used as adhesive is removed and the cap is removed from the head of the patient.

Cleaning: The patient’s scalp is wiped with a sterile cloth and the body is swabbed with warm sponging.

Massage and or fisting – The head, shoulders, upper part of the back, nape of the neck and cervical area are lightly massaged using the same oil and or ghee for 5-10 minutes. Alternatively soothing fisting can be done.

If further treatments are not planned after Shiro Vasti, the person should be allowed to relax for a while. The body should not be immediately exposed to cold or cold measures. Doing so might induce some symptoms like cold, headache etc.

Any excess oil dripping around should be wiped off using sterile clothes or tissue papers or sterile cotton pads.

Tala Dharana – Procedures conducted on the head like Murdhni Taila (including Shiro Vasti) will sometimes cause acute cold and cold related symptoms like running nose, sneeze etc. Some people of Vata or Kapha constitution can catch up with cold after the treatment. Therefore as a precautionary measure, every day after the completion of Shirovasti, a small amount of Rasnadi Churna herbal powder is rubbed over the head.

Rasnadi Churna is applied on the forehead and rubbed for few seconds. This powder induces warmth in the head and sense organs and keeps the cold and related symptoms at bay. If not, the cold will develop into headache and breathing problems due to post-nasal drip and produce a hindrance to the smooth conduct of the treatment. This will combat the cold induced by the treatment procedure.

Alternatively the paste of Rasnadi Churna is applied on the crown of the scalp, a sterile cotton pad placed over it (alternately the leaves of Vata alleviating leaves viz Eranda

Patra or Ricinis communis or Nirgundi Patra or Vitex negundo etc. are placed over the applied paste) and a bandage cloth is tied around the scalp.

Snana (Bath): If the patient is being treated as in patient, warm water bath is advised after a couple of hours after treatment or after Swedana. Water processed with Dashamoola (10 roots), Nirgundi (Vitex negundo), Nimba (Azadirachta indica) etc is used for bathing purpose.

Warm water processed with Amalaki, Triphala or Chandana shall be used for head bath. The oil shall be removed using green gram flour or herbal soaps or shampoos. Siddharthaka Snana Churna is readily available (bathing powder) for bathing purposes.

Hot water should not be used over the head because it can damage the sense organs. Patient is advised to take a refreshing hot water bath after going home or after a few hours if the patient is being handled as in-patient. Otherwise the patient is advised to take a warm bath at home.

Herbal water or decoctions – After hot water shower, decoctions like Shunti Kwatha, Jeerakadi Kwatha or Gandharvahastadi Kwatha should be administered for oral intake either in the clinic or hospital or at home after discharge. These herbal extracts keep correcting the disturbed metabolism in the body and also keep micro-cleansing the system by removing blocks from the cells.

Diet and lifestyle recommendations:
Light digestible food is recommended on the days of treatment. The patient is advised not to take stomach full of food. Fried and refrigerated foods and heavy foods are avoided. Hot and fresh food should be taken. Hot water should be used for drinking and bathing purposes.

Laghu Ahara – When the patient gets hungry, he or she should be served with light and easily digestible food. The food should preferably be liquid or semi-solid and should have been processed with ginger.

Light digestible food always complements an effective treatment and set of medications and helps in quick recovery from the ailments. Shirodhara is no exception.

Light food is also advised for healthy individuals undergoing Shiro Dhara. Hot liquid diet garnished with kitchen spices like ginger, pepper, cumin seeds etc should be prescribed. Laghu ahara also serves the purpose of deepana (metabolism enhancing effect) and pachana (expulsion of ama, toxic substances formed due to bad metabolism).

The lightest food format comes in the forms of:
Yavagu – is a liquid preparation in the form of thin gruel wherein rice (1part) is processed in 6 times water. It is seen that the final preparation has more of liquid than solid.
Vilepi – is a liquid preparation in the form of thin gruel wherein rice (1part) is processed in 4 times water. It is seen that the final preparation is of a semisolid nature. Apart from being nutritious and tasty, it is known to destroy ama by its root and kindle the belly fire.
Peya – is a liquid preparation in the form of thin gruel wherein rice (1part) is processed in 14 times water. It is seen that the final preparation has a small quantity of solid portion left over.
Manda – is a liquid preparation in the form of thin gruel wherein rice (1part) is processed in 14 times water. It is seen that the entire solid content is filtered out from the final preparation such that only liquid remains.
Yusha – is a liquid preparation in the form of thin gruel wherein dal i.e. grams mainly green gram (1part) is processed in 18 times water and its extract is filtered out.
Liquid diet added with ginger, cumin seeds etc should be given. Rice gruel or green gram gruel are very good dietetic inclusions.
Dhanyaka sidda jala (Water processed with coriander), buttermilk mixed with Trikatu Churna and ghee should be prescribed

In current day lifestyle, it is highly difficult to prepare these forms of diet. The key is planning and consuming healthy and balanced food according to ones convenience.

If Shiro Vasti is being done as a part of treatment for some ailment or is a part of a big treatment package oriented towards some major health issue, the following restrictions shall be followed –

Keep away from:
Excessive indulgence in sexual pleasures
Strenuous physical exercises
Exposure to sunlight
Exposure to cold or intake of cold food substances
Smoking, alcohol consumption
Excessive sleeping
Standing in cool breezy or dusty areas for long time
Forcibly withholding the natural urges or reflexes of the body like those of defecation, urination, hunger, thirst, sleep, sneeze etc,
High or low levelled pillows while sleeping
Stress, Grief and anger
Keeping awakened till late nights
Walking for long distances
The patient should not sleep for long hours and also not remain awakened till late night. The head position (placement of pillow) while sleeping should neither be too high nor too low.
The patient should keep away from emotional highs and lows.
Speaking or shouting in excess, speaking loudly etc.
Keep the mind free from stress, in a pleasant condition
The patient is advised to take a break from the work if possible (during treatment).

Nitya Virechana: Doctor’s prefer giving a mild laxative on a daily basis during the treatment process. This helps to clean the body of its toxins and in keeping the body and mind light and relaxed. Generally Gandharvahastadi Kashayam (medicated decoction with castor plant as the chief ingredient) is given twice daily on empty stomach. 15 ml of Kashayam with 30-45ml of warm water is the ideal dose.

It is believed that during Parisheka (synonym of dhara) some cellular toxins (doshas and malas) are released into the gut. They should be evacuated on a regular basis with herbal laxative. If left alone the morbid doshas can cause indigestion, tastelessness, constipation, flatulence, bloating etc and also aggravate the existing disease. It should be given in a dose of 24-48 ml at bedtime. This herbal extract is basically a laxative and best one in the business of controlling the morbidity and vitiation of Vayu.

Vyadhihara Ghrita: Alternative to the daily laxative some doctors prescribe medicated ghee (disease specific) in a low dose (10-25ml) to be taken mixed with hot milk at bedtime. This is preferred in patients of Pitta constitution (Vata-Pitta constitution also).

These Ghrita’s not only alleviate the disease but also provide a laxative effect and help in removing the toxins from the body. Frequently prescribed Ghrita’s are Arjuna Ghrita, Trikantakadi Ghrita, Ashwagandhadi Ghrita, Saraswatha Ghrita, Brahmi Ghrita or Shatavari Ghrita, Guggulutiktakam Ghritam etc

Discharge – The patient is discharged on daily basis (out-patient) or after the course has been completed (in-patient) after giving proper lifestyle and diet advices along with suitable medicines (oral). The patient is also advised to undergo the treatment twice or thrice in a year.
Disease specific and disease modifying medications shall be given in the follow up period.
Other distressing and Vata controlling activities such as Yoga, Meditation etc shall also be advised

As a follow up:
A diet chart and a catalogue / write up of do’s and don’ts (w.r.t diet and lifestyle changes) is given
Prescription of oral medicines to be taken is handed over to the patient

Rasayana’s are very useful during follow up because they not only rejuvenate the diseased cells and organs of the body; they also keep the mind out of stress and work as immune modulators and anti-ageing agents.

The patient is also advised to undergo the treatment twice or thrice in a year as a part of preventing the recurrence of diseases.
The healthy individuals can also take a course or 2 in a year, to keep them rejuvenated and also to keep many psycho-somatic diseases away.

The date for the next follow up consultation is given
Shiro Vasti is recommended on a regular basis (at least two courses a year or 1 sitting in a month)

Duration

Duration of Shiro Vasti:
Shirovasti is usually done for a period of 7 days. In certain stubborn health related conditions (diseases) the treatment can be extended to 2 weeks duration.

Precautions to be taken while conducting Shirovasti –
The masseur or the person conducting the head massage should have cut his nails and trimmed them
They should not have any infectious diseases, inflammatory or degenerative diseases in their hands of fingers, Parkinson’s disease or any other nervous disorders
The hands of the masseur should be devoid of cracks and fissures
The Shirovasti medicine should not be too hot or too cold
The medicine should not be poured directly over the head of the patient

Best combos with Shirovasti –
There are certain treatments which compliment and supplement the effect of Shirovasti, thus forming best combo with it. In certain conditions we need to combine treatments for comprehensive healing.

Below mentioned are highly effective in comprehensive body-mind healing when combined skilfully –
Sarva Abhyanga – full body massage with herbal oils
Sarvangadhara – Stream pouring of medicinal fluids all over the body
Kaya Seka or Pizhichil – Stream pouring of herbal oils all over the body
Patra Pinda Sweda – Leaf bolus fomentation
Abhyanga and Patra Pinda Sweda – Combination of full body herbal oil massage and Leaf bolus fomentation along with Shirodhara
Shashtika Shali Pinda Sweda or Navarakizhi – Rice bolus fomentation
Padabhyanga and Sarvabhyanga – Foot massage and full body herbal oil massage
Vasti – Therapeutic enemas (oil, milk and decoction enemas)

When we plan Sarva Abhyanga or Sarvangadhara / Pizhichil alongside Shiro vasti, we need to collect the oils needed for those procedures as well. Different oils are preferred for Shiro vasti and other procedures like Sarvangadhara etc carried over the body.

Many times the doctor intellectually plans to use the same oil for both Sarva Abhyanga and Shiro Vasti. Ex, Ksheerabala Taila is an oil which can be used for both head and body in case of Vata afflictions, Vata disorders, degenerative diseases and headache and insomnia. Skilfully planning the oil also will curtail the expenses of the treatment and make it affordable.

For Sharira Abhyanga (body massage) and Kaya Seka, the below mentioned oils may be preferably used:
Sahacharadi Taila,
Ksheerabala Taila,
Chandanabala Lakshadi Tailam,
Dhanwantara Tailam,
Mahanarayana Tailam,
Balashwagandhadi Tailam,
Karpasastyadi Tailam,
Panchaguna Tailam etc
The oils should be selected keeping in view the body constitution, morbid doshas and nature of morbidity involved

Mode of action

Probable mode of action of Shiro Vasti –
It is difficult to prove with scientific measures how exactly Shiro Basti works but we cannot ignore the magnificent results provided by these treatments. Let’s work out in a hypothetical way.

Below explained is the hypothetical explanation of how Moordha Taila or Murdhni Taila might work. Since Shiro Vasti is a form of Murdhni Taila, the same hypothesis works. Thus in the discussion ahead, I have used the word Moordha Taila or Murdhni Taila interchangeably with Shiro Vasti.

Controlling Vayu – Vayu is the driving force of all the activities of the body and mind. Vayu is said to be a Tantra (formula) which runs the Yantra (machine) called as Shareera (body). Pitta’s, Kapha, the tissues of the body, the waste excreta of the body, all are dependent on Vata (Vayu).

If Vayu is functioning properly all these elements are in equilibrium and if Vayu is disturbed, it further disturbs other elements of the body and causes wide array of diseases. The key for well being is in having the Vayu (life force and energy) in our body in control. Murdhni Taila will have a tremendous effect on controlling Vayu.

It controls, pacifies and expels the morbid Vayu. Chakrapani has already clarified that Prana located in the Shiras is nothing but different types of Vayu. Controlling Vayu is almost catching the bull by its horns; all the activities in the body will fall in line.

Relaxing and coolant effect on the brain – Murdhni Taila (ShiroBasti here) has a relaxing effect (and coolant effect in treatments like Takra shiro dhara) on the brain and the whole nervous system and hence releases the stress and anxiety stagnant in the chief controlling station of our body.

As we know that the brain controls all the functions of the body. The master gland Pituitary gland and the hypothalamus associated with many physical and mental functions are located in the head. When all these are relaxed, the body functions including the heart functions take place in a relaxed manner.

The circulation of blood and nutrients take place in a proper way. The peripheral resistance is reduced. The channels of the body open up. The cells start flushing the toxins and overall metabolism gets improved. Murdhni taila (Shirovasti) also relieves stress to a great extent.

When we get de-stressed the psychosomatic balance is established. The brain will start controlling the body mechanics in a better and efficient way. We will feel at bliss and best of body-mind health.

Balancing Pitta and Rakta – Rakta or blood is the chief site of Pitta. Variations in pitta will affect the blood flow and variations in blood tissue will have its impact on Pitta. Murdhni Taila (Shiro Basti) procedures will bring about a balance between the circulating Rakta and Pitta located in the Rakta.

This circulating Pitta is responsible for many inflammatory processes taking place at various parts of the body, when it gets vitiated. By establishing cordiality between Pitta and Rakta, Murdhni Taila (Shiro Vasti) establishes a balanced circulation throughout the body and relieves the stress over the heart.

Diseases like hypertension, which is the key for many systemic disorders will be dealt. Inflammation taking place in various tissues and organs can be brought to the halt. The body will be in more peace with itself.

Revitalizing the nervous system – MoordhaTaila (Shiro Vasti) procedures relaxes & revitalizes the central nervous system, balances the brain and hormonal functions and thus regularizes and relaxes all the functions of the body. The stress in each and every cell and passage of the body is removed. It has a soothing effect on the endocrine system.

Enhancing blood supply and nutrition to brain – Murdhni Taila (ShiroBasti here) procedures improves the supply of blood and nutrition to the brain and thus increases its working compliance

Pressure and Temperature effect – The pressure and temperature effect of the medicaments used in the Moordha Taila (Shirovasti here) procedures towards a comprehensive body-mind cure cannot be ruled out

Healing Marmas – With an Ayurveda perspective Moordha taila (Shiro Vasti here) procedures might communicate with the deepest recesses of the brain by soothing the Marmas (vital points of convergence of bones, muscles, blood vessels, soft tissues and joints) located in the head viz Apanga, Avarta, Shanka, Utkshepa, Seemantha and Sthapani Marma’s with which the medicaments comes into contact with.

Most of these Marma’s are related to the eye and blood circulation to the brain. By activating the Marma’s Murdhni Taila treatment procedures might make a strong impact on the functioning of central nervous system and important glands within the brain.

Effect on Alochaka Pitta – Alochaka Pitta (Pitta subtype) which is located in the Eye is said to be of 2 types. One is Chakshu Vaisheshika (located within the eye and maintains its well being) and the other is Buddhi Vaisheshika (the part of Alochaka Pitta which has its connectivity with higher centres of the brain and thus monitors the higher functions like intelligence, memory etc).

Apanga and Avarta marma’s are related to the eye. Murdhni Taila (ShiroBasti here) procedures especially dhara and vasti might make a soothing impact on buddhi vaisheshika alochaka pitta through these Marma’s and in return soothe the nervous system.

Reversing Chitta Nasha and Bhaya – The injury of Seemantha Marma (joints of the skull) is said to cause Chitta Nasha (psychological abnormality) and Bhaya (fear complex). Thus when the same Marma is healed through Dhara and other Moordha taila procedures, it may reverse the Chitta Nasha and Bhaya, i.e. it might relieve stress, anxiety and depression. With this the relaxed nervous system will take care of heart functions and circulation patterns.

Control of governing Dosha’s – The chief governing doshas in the head are Prana Vayu, Sadhaka Pitta and Tarpaka Kapha. The integrity of the functioning of these 3 sub-dosha’s is the key for a perfect body-mind health. The brain controls the whole body and mind through the balanced and properly functioning Prana, Sadhaka and Tarpaka. Imbalance or vitiation of one or more of these 3 factors will lead to many psychosomatic diseases.

The soothing of these Marma’s and in turn soothing of Nervous system and endocrine glands as an effect of MoordhaTaila (Shiro Vasti here) treatment procedures will definitely relax Prana Vayu, Sadhaka Pitta and Tarpaka Kapha in the brain (head).

These in turn will have a relaxing effect over the Vyana Vayu, Ranjaka Pitta, Avalambaka Kapha and Udana Vayu controlling the heart functions and circulation. They will also have the other sub doshas in control. By controlling the Kledaka kapha, bodhaka kapha, samana vayu, ranjaka pitta and pachaka pitta, the key brain dosha’s will keep the core metabolism under control.

By controlling the apana vayu, they will keep the excretory functions under control and help in regular detoxification of the body. By controlling the bhrajaka pitta and vyana vayu, they will trim the color and complexion. By controlling the Shleshaka kapha functions they will maintain the musculoskeletal integrity.

Benefits

Benefits of Shiro Vasti –
The benefits mentioned in relation to Murdhni Taila can be considered as benefits of Shirodhara. They are as below mentioned –
As already said, Moordha taila (application of oil to the head) is highly beneficial for the brain, sense organs, nerves and hairs. This not only cures many disorders related to head, neck and the above mentioned organs, it also keeps many diseases at bay. Moordha Taila controls vitiated Vayu and Pitta in the head.

Vitiated Vata and Pitta would lead to many diseases of the brain, nerves and sense organs by producing degenerative and inflammatory changes respectively. They, when severely vitiated can cause irreversible damage in these organs. Thus Moordha Taila is both a prophylactic (preventive) and curative measure.

Since the brain and the nervous system controls the entire body functions, soothing them with Moordha taila procedures will keep the body fit and healthy. All the functions in the body will be carried out smoothly. Pituitary gland is the master gland which controls all the endocrine functions in the body (functions of small glands which produce important chemicals which are needed for many body functions and discharge it into the blood stream directly, they don’t have ducts or tubes to drain their secretions), is located in the head. Moordhi Taila, controls the pituitary functions and in turn all the other endocrine functions.

This helps in the smooth running of the body mechanics. Moordhi Taila soothes the stressed and agitated mind and helps us to keep calm and at ease. Moordhi Taila helps in discharge of happy chemicals which helps us to come out of mood swings and live at peace.

Nityam sneha aardram shirasaha shiraha shoolam na jaayate
Na khaalityam na paalityam na keshaaha prapatanti cha
Balaha shiraha kapaalaanaam visheshena abhivardhate
Dridha moolaaha cha deerghaaha cha krishnaa keshaa bhavati hi
Indriyaanaam praseedanti su twak bhavati cha aananam
Nidraa laabhaha sukham cha syaat moordhni tailam nishevanaat (Ref – Charaka Sutra Sthanam 5/81-83)
When the head is kept moist by applying oil on it –
It prevents head ache (shira shoola)
It prevents baldness (khalityam)
It prevents premature greying of hair (paalityam)
It prevents hair fall (kasha prapatana)
It helps hairs to get deep rooted, long, dense, look beautiful and pitch black in colour
It keeps the sense organs in a healthy condition
It helps in improving the glow and complexion of the face
It helps in inducing good sleep (nidraa labha)
It provides happiness and pleasantness of mind (sukham), relieves stress
Rejuvenates and energizes the body
Agni sthairyam – establishes the normalcy of digestive fire and corrects metabolism
Ojo sthairyam – stabilises and fortifies ojus in the body (ojus is the essence of all the tissues formed as an end product of tissue formation, its normalcy in terms of quality and quantity points towards an established immunity)
Soothes the nerves and improves blood circulation
Removes stress, relaxes mind
Improves neuro-muscular conduction
Paatavam indriyasya – relaxes and rejuvenates the mind and senses
Jaraso maandhyam – delays ageing
Chiram jeevitam – provides longevity of life
Nitaraam doshaan – controls and creates equilibrium in all the doshas
Vrishataa – acts as an aphrodisiac
Relieves pain and stiffness caused due to extreme stress and mental disorders
Improves circulation to skin, improves colour and complexion
Varna sthairyam – provides and establishes proper colour
Brings about lightness and a feeling of health in the afflicted joints, muscles and soft tissues
When combined with Nitya Virechana, Shiro dhara eliminates the body toxins, establishes health and tones up the joints and soft tissues
Shiro Vasti also prevents those diseases caused by Shiro Abhihata (mentioned above) and if those diseases have occurred, Shirovasti helps in mitigating them effectively.

Other benefits –
Shiro vasti is highly beneficial to ward off –
Prasupti – loss of sensation or numbness in the head or any part of the body
Ardita – facial paralysis, Bell’s Palsy
Jaagara – not feeling asleep
Nasa shosha – dryness of the nose
Aasya shosha – dryness of the mouth
Timira – blindness
Shiroroga – diseases afflicting the head
Darunaka – blisters and boils on the head, dandruff
Keshapata – hairfall

Shiro rogaan tathaa rogaaha shiro abhyanga upakarshitaha
Keshaanaam maardavam dairghyam bahutvam snigdha krushnataam
Karoti shirasaha truptim sutvakkam api cha aananam
Santarpanam cha indriyaanaam shirasaha paripooranam (Ref – Sushruta Chikitsa 24/25,26)
Shiro Abhyanga is the treatment of choice for Shiro Rogas (diseases related to the head). The hairs become smooth, long, dense, oily and black. The head and its contents are nourished, the skin of the face becomes beautiful and glamorous and the sense organs are nourished. The same benefits are obtained after ShiroVasti.

Shiro Abhyanga wards off Roukshya (dryness of the head and scalp), Kandu (itching in the scalp) and Mala (dirt in the head). Similar impact can be seen after doing Shiro Vasti.

Shiro Vasti imparts all the benefits of Abhyanga (Massage with herbal oils) –
Abhyangam acharet nityam sa jara shrama vataha
Drishti prasaadaha pushti ayu swapna su twak daardhya krit (Ref – Ashtanga Hridaya Sutra 2/7)

Tathaa shareeram abhyangaat dridam su twak cha jaayate
Prashaantam maaruta aabaadham klesha vyaayaama samsaham (Charaka Sutra 5/85)

Susparsho upachita angaha cha balavaan priya darshinaha
Bhavati abhyanga nityatvaat naro alpa jaraa eva cha (Ref – Charaka Sutra 5/89)

Abhyango maardava karaha kapha vaata nirodhinaha
Dhaatoonaam drishti janano mrujaa varna bala pradaha (Ref – Sushruta Chikitsa 24/30)
Jarahara / Alpa Jaraa – Halts ageing process
Shramahara – Relieves fatigue and tiredness
Vataha / Prashanta Maruta Abadham – Controls and expels morbid Vata, cures Vata disorders
Drishti prasaada – Improves vision
Pushti / Upachita Anga – Promotes strength and bulk of muscles
Ayu – Enhances life span
Swapna – Induces good sleep and relieves insomnia
Su Twak / Susparsha – Promotes skin health
Dardhya krit – Provides strength and stability and compactness to the body
Klesha samsaham – Improves tolerance to hardships
Vyayama samsaham – Enhances the capacity of exercise tolerance
Priya darshinaha / Varna Pradaha – Enhances beauty
Balavaan / Bala pradaha – Improves strength, integrity and immunity
Mardava Kara – Brings about smoothness of the body parts
Kapha Nirodhinaha – Expels morbid Kapha
Dhatoonaam Janano – Enhances quantity and quality of the tissues, thus enhancing the immunity of the body
Shiro Vasti effectively combats all the diseases indicated for Shiro Basti in the above said passages.

Limitations

Limitations of Shiro Vasti –
Shirovasti is one of the best Ayurvedic treatments which are used to prevent and treat many psychosomatic illnesses. It is the best stress relieving treatment. It provides good strength, freshness and energy, improves metabolism, circulation and nerve conduction.

But on the other hand it is not a sole remedy especially when used therapeutically. Parallel to it we might have to add some disease modifying drugs and or compounds and effective treatments for better relief.

Along with Shiro-Vasti some oral medications which enhance strength and stability should be included along with some immune-modulators, anti-ageing medicines and rejuvenators. Holistic mind-body healing is always the motto of Ayurveda.

Murdha taila types

Types of Moordha Taila –
Abhyangaha sekaha pichavaha bastihi cha iti chatuhu vidham
Moordha tailam bahu gunam tat vidyaat uttara uttaram (Ref – Ashtanga Hridaya Sootram 2/23)
Moordha Taila or Murdhni Taila is of 4 types –

Shiro Abhyanga –
(Shiro=Head, Abhyanga=Massage) Shiro Abhyanga means massaging the head with herbal oils for a fixed duration of time (usually 30-40 minutes)
Read related: Ayurvedic Head Massage: Benefits, Procedure

Shiro Seka / Shiro dhara –
(Shiro=Head, Seka or Dhara=Stream pouring) Shiro dhara or seka is a procedure in which the herbal oils or medicated liquids (milk, buttermilk etc) are poured in stream over the head of the person for a fixed duration of time (usually 35-45 minutes or 60 minutes)
Read more: Shirodhara: Procedure, Benefits, Mode Of Action, Limitations

Shiro Pichu
(Shiro=Head, Pichu=Keeping a cotton pad dipped in oil) Shiro Pichu is a procedure in which a sterile cotton pad dipped in herbal oil is kept over the head (vertex or crown or entire scalp) and tied with a bandage cloth. The Pichu is kept in place for a fixed duration of time (usually 1-2 hours to ¼ to ½ a day)
Read related: Shiro Pichu: Benefits, Procedure, Mode Of Action

Note – The duration of the treatment is flexible and is fixed depending on the morbidity or as needed for the constitution of the person in question or as per the decision of the physician.

Each type of Murdhni Taila has its own benefits but they are comparably efficient in the chronology mentioned by Acharya Vagbhata (ancient Ayurvedic physician and teacher) in the above said verse –
Shiro Seka is more effective and beneficial in comparison to Shiro Abhyanga
Shiro Pichu is more effective and beneficial in comparison to Shiro Seka
Shiro Vasti is more effective and beneficial in comparison to Shiro Pichu

Just Before Finishing,
Shiro Vasti is the best treatment which Ayurveda provides for distressing, relaxing and to get rid of many psychosomatic illnesses.

It is not all about pouring the oil over the head. Shirovasti keeps our senses at peace, mind at tranquility, gives us the ability to win over day-to-day stress, provides a ‘never-been-so-healthy’ feel, regularizes metabolism, controls and balances the doshas, integrates body mind co-ordination and prevents many diseases.

It provides a comprehensive body-mind wellness. Many people may have reluctance on using the oils over their heads. But where do we get the lubrication and relaxation from if we don’t come out of certain inhibitions? We can’t sail in 2 boats.

Standing amidst this stressful world wherein our body, mind, senses and soul are undergoing wear and tear on a regular basis, it is high time that you go on for a body-mind servicing in a holistic and traditional way and earn a comprehensive health and a never experienced type of well being.

At the same time you can keep many diseases at bay. Shiro-Basti (and all types of Murdha taila procedures) imparts a similar healing effect which is better experienced than explained. All you need to do is to find an experienced Ayurvedic doctor in your neighbourhood. After undergoing Shirovasti, you would never complain that you are feeling ageless, rejuvenated and full of energy of course as never before.

Article by Dr Raghuram.
Email: [email protected]

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