Panchakarma for Detoxifying and Cleansing
The ultimate detoxifying and cleansing experience, panchakarma is a series of five specialized treatments designed individually for each person based on his or her specific constitution and specific health challenges. Prior to treatment, herbs and sesame oil used for the massage are cooked at a very low temperature for eight hours.
The first step in the series is an herbalized oil massage to head and neck. Localized heat poultices and special herbal oils or powders are administered into nasal passages to clear impurities from the head and sinus, reduce pain and promote relaxation. Stimulation of the limbic system via the olfactory nerve can have profound effects on moods, emotions, desires, appetite and memories.
The second step in panchakarma occurs while lying on a massage table covered with a special fabric that doesn’t absorb oil. The process of oleation loosens toxins in tissues, initiating the purification process. Therapeutic marma point massage with warm, herbalized oil penetrates deep into body tissues, encouraging impurities to loosen from pore walls, sebaceous glands, lymph and capillaries. Inducing in a general sense of well-being, it also stimulates the nervous and immune systems, and is known to improve circulation, rejuvenate tissues and induce sound sleep.
Body exfoliation, the third step, removes the sticky layer of sebum, sweat, dead skin cells and accompanying waste products found the surface of the skin. This enlivens skin tissue, improves circulation, soothes and brings a glow to the complexion.
Shirodhara, an ancient technique, uses a warm stream of oil that flows onto the center of the forehead. Affecting the brain’s deep centers, the warm stream brings about the release of chemicals that result in feelings of pleasure, relaxation, calm and centeredness. A subsequent herbalized steam liquefies impurities, expands the channels of circulation and increases the blood flow, allowing impurities to move to the digestive tract for elimination.
Panchakarma is one aspect of a group of cleansing therapies incorporating work on energetic marma points that cross over tendons, blood vessels, lymphatic vessels, bones and nerves. Massaging these healing points stimulates the life force known as prana. Stimulating marma points that act as a bridge between the physical and subtle bodies can lead to an emotional response and a meditative state that allows a connection with a deeper level of self, as well as the possibility of physical and energetic healing.
A 90-minute consultation regarding an individual’s lifestyle and health challenges is conducted prior to the three-hour panchakarma treatment, recommended on three to seven or more consecutive days. Three days is appropriate for those using the treatments for maintaining health through change of the seasons and seven days is recommended for individuals with health challenges.
Christina Carlin, an Ayurvedic practitioner and owner of The Ayurveda, Massage & Yoga Institute, located at 501 Goodlette Rd., Ste. A-107, in Naples, offers panchakarma and massage therapy, as well as ayurvedic skin care and yoga therapy. For more information call 239-450-6903.