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Topic of the Month

Bronchitis

The disease bronchitis is characterized by the inflammation of the bronchi of the lungs which results in the discharge (coughing out) of a mucopurulent substance, commonly known as phlegm. It is of several types depending upon the nature of the discharge. Bronchitis can occur as a symptom of many other diseases like tuberculosis. In all such cases, one or the other type of germ is considered to be the causative factor.

In Ayurveda, this disease is called kasa roga. Krimis or germs are known in Ayurveda to cause the disease. But they are not considered to be the primary causative factors. Ayurveda considers kasa roga to be caused primarily by the impairment of digestion. For the treatment of bronchitis, therefore, drugs having properties to correct both the lungs and stomach are selected by ayurvedic physicians.

Symptoms:

  • Cough that produces mucus (sputum), may be blood streaked.

  • Shortness of breath aggravated by exertion or mild activity.

  • Frequent respiratory infections (such as colds).

  • Wheezing.

  • Fatigue.

  • Ankle, feet and leg swelling that affects both sides.

  • Reddish face, palms or mucous membranes.

  • Reddish cheeks.

  • Headaches.

  • Chest pain.

  • Sore throat.

  • Fever.

Root Causes :

Acute bronchitis generally follows a viral respiratory infection. The viral infection produces bronchitis and secondary bacterial infection. Chronic bronchitis is a long term condition of excessive bronchial mucus with a productive cough. Chronic bronchitis is also known as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Cigarette smoking (active and passive exposure) is the chief cause of the disease. Factors that make it worse include air pollution, infection, family factors and allergies.

Early recognition and treatment of small airway disease in people who smoke, combined with smoking cessation, may prevent the progression the disease.

Herbal Remedies

Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum):

Water boiled with tulsi leaves can be taken as a drink in case of sore throat. This water can also be used as a gargle.

Vasaka (Adhatoda vasika):

In acute stages of bronchitis it gives unfailing relief, especially where the sputum is thick and sticky. It liquefies the sputum so that it is brought up more easily. For coughs, 7 leaves of the plant are boiled in water, strained and mixed with 24 grams of honey. This decoction provides relief. Similarly a confection of vasaka flowers eaten in doses of 12 grams twice daily relives cough. About 60 grams of flowers and 180 grams of jaggery should be mixed for preparing this confection.
 
Linseed: 
A loose poultice of the seeds can be applied with excellent results in chest troubles and diseases like bronchitis, pneumonia, broncho-pneumonia and pleurisy. The counter-irritant effect of the paultice can be enhanced by dusting mustard powder over it.

Linseed emulsion or tea can be made by heating a teaspoon of the powdered seeds in about 360 ml of water. The liquid is reduced to half its quantity by boiling, and can be sweetened with sugar candy or sugar. Even children can be given this tea to counteract bronchitis.


Diet: 

  • A limited quantity of carbohydrates, fats and proteins.
  • A liberal amount of alkali-forming foods fresh fruits, green vegetables, sprouted seeds and grains.
  • Avoid foods which tend to produce phlegm rice, sugar, lentils and curd.
  • Avoid difficult-to-digest foods strong tea, coffee, alcoholic beverages, condiments, pickles, sauces and all refined and processed foods.
  • Take plenty of water during an attack of asthma.
  • Take very light dinner so that the stomach is almost empty when fall asleep.
     

Life style: 

  • Avoid excess humidity.
  • Avoid exposure to dust, fumes and pollen grains
  • Check your allergens
  • Try to avoid smoking completely.
  • Do not over eat as it is prone to asthma attack
  • Keep your room pollution-free
  • Remove carpets from your room

Yoga to cure Bronchitis: 

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