AN INVOLUNTARY and painful contraction of a voluntary muscle or a group of muscles, is known as cramp. In Ayurveda this is known as mamsagata vayu. When it is confined to calf muscles of the leg, it 1s called pindikodveshtam. Carrying out exercises much in excess of one’s own capacity, indulgence in dry and rough food articles, taking some harmful medicines, may result in its attack.
Of the types of vayu, yana vayu pervades all over the body and among other functions it regulates the functions of voluntary muscles. This regulates the functions of the cerebra, spinal nerves system. If any metabolic waste which normally should be eliminated from the body does not get out, and circulates inside the body, it is likely to get deposited between nerve-endings and the muscle tissue. This in Ayurvedic parlance is known as ama, which is responsible for the causation of these cramps. Cramps are also caused as symptoms of different other diseases.
Massage is the best therapy for correcting Vyana vayu. It should be done by rubbing medicated oil like mahanarayana tailam all over the body. In winter season, it should be made warm by heating and then applied for massage. Those who get cramps frequently can even use ordinary gingli oil and have a massage by themselves, before taking daily bath.
Singhanadha guggulu is a good drug for the treatment of this condition. These patients are usually constipated. Singhanadha guggulu relieves constipation when given in a higher dose. Normally it is given in a dose of 4 tablets, three times a day; but it can be increased further. Some hot drink, preferably hot milk, should be given to the patient. After he has taken this medicine if constipation is not relieved adequately by this medicine, the patient should be given castor oil in appropriate dose, depending upon the constitution of the individual.
The patient should not be given such foods that aggravate vayu.
Pulses are bad for such patients.
Cold,rough, dry, pungent, and astringent food items are bad for such patients.
Sweet things and sour things can be given to him in good quantity.
Garlic, asafoetida, patola as vegetableis very useful.
The patient should resort to regular massage and exercise. He should not expose himself to cold wind or rain. Fasting, exercises in excess of one’s own strength, remaining awake at night. suppression of natural urges, worry, anxiety and anger are some of the important causes of aggravation of vayu and they should be discouraged. He should not sleep during day time.