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What is Bipolar Disorder?

According to Western psychological diagnosis Bipolar disorder is characterized by mood swings between excitement and depression. It has wide-ranging symptoms and manifestations that depend on the constitution of the body, environmental factors.

According to Modern medicine Bipolar disorder is also known as manic-depressive illness. It is a disorder of brain that causes unusual mood swings, variation in energy and activity level and the ability to do daily tasks. The symptoms of bipolar disorder are different when coping with normal ups and down in the life. The symptoms are severe; either it is excitement or despair. In psychology there are several subcategories of bipolar disorder depending on the symptoms.

Ayurveda offers a holistic approach towards the disease. According to Ayurveda a bipolar disorder patient is prone to vata imbalance and low ojas. Vata governs the movement, mind and nervous system where as ojas signifies the immunity, strength and ability to cope with situations.

There is no specific similar disease mentioned in ayurvedic texts. In charak samhita there is description of 'Unmada' i.e. insanity, which affects mind, intelligence, perception, knowledge, recollection, inclination, behavior, activities and performance. Charak described five types of unmade depending upon the symptoms and involvement of dosha , which can be correlated with some description of bipolar disorder . According to the principles of Ayurveda Bipolar disorder is due to imbalance of vata, pitta and kapha (the three fundamental biological qualities) along with the mental principles of sattva, rajas and tamas (the qualities of consciousness). During the manic and depressive phase the variation of ojas and three dosha.

Signs and Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder

Episodes of excitement and depression are seen in daily life. In men more episodes of excitement are seen where as in women episodes of depression are frequent. It generally starts in early 30s.

If vata is more involved symptoms like excitement, talkativeness, racing thoughts, hyper-sexuality, and impulsive over-spending of the energy, if pitta is more involved the symptoms like over-confidence, aggression or anger, irritability, less sleep and hyperactivity are seen. The kapha involvement includes symptoms of low feeling, lack of enthusiasm, depression, sadness, lethargy, lack of appetite, loss of libido, excess sleeping and inactivity.

Causes of Bipolar Disorder

The exact cause of bipolar disorder is unknown as per modern medicine. Some genetic factors and family environment , stress and certain trauma may result bipolar disorder.

Some ayurvedic physicians says that overexcitement is due to aggravation of vata and depressive is due to pitta but actual fact is that the symptoms of hopelessness, lack of concentration, insomnia, restlessness, despair and suicidal thoughts are mainly due to aggravation of vata dosha as it increases dryness and alteration of thoughts. Vata imbalance is the main doshic principle behind bipolar disorder as highly aggravated vata leads to fear, isolation, anxiety, palpitations, nervous breakdown, insomnia, tremors, instability and hasty mood swings.

Besides the imbalance in dosha, low ojas aggravates the state of bipolar disorder as low confidence and immunity allows mood alterations accompanied with vata imbalance (stressful conditions vitiates vata dosha easily).

Diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder

  1. Symptoms in day to day life
  2. Family history
  3. In Ayurveda diagnosis is based on prakruti of a person (body constitution)
  4. History of vikruti (doshic imbalance)
  5. Levels of ojas and confidence
  6. Level of mental principles (sattva, rajas and tamas)

How to Manage Bipolar Disorder?

In modern therapy the treatment of bipolar includes sessions with psychiatrist for psycho therapy and medications to cope with the symptoms and no doubt that these medicines have side effects. From an Ayurvedic perspective the treatment depends on doshic involvement and it treats the deep rooted cause. In management of any psychological disease, Ayurveda balances the energetics of the mind (satva, rajas and tamas). The Ayurvedic treatments emphasizes on increasing ojas and reducing stress factors to treat bipolar disorder. The holistic approach of Ayurveda comprises Diet and herbal remedies along with yoga and meditation, which gives wonderful results in psychological disorders. Since Ayurvedic treatment is not a quick process of healing and relies on following healthy routines and habits for lifetime, it is important for the patient already diagnosed with bipolar to continue these herbal treatments under guidance of ayurvedic physician.

Herbal Remedies for Bipolar Disorder by Planet Ayurveda

Planet Ayurveda offers effective herbal remedies such as Brahmi Capsules, Stress Support & Medhya Churna for natural treatment of bipolar disorder. These herbal remedies helps to reduce stress, enhance immunity and ojas and pacifies vata dosha. These herbal remedies also helps in building stability in mood and activities. These remedies are safe to use as these are free from side effects.

1. Brahmi Capsules

Brahmi capsules is most effective memory boosting herbal supplement. It helps in bringing coordination between nervous system and daily activity. Brahmi is herb of great choice for any kind of mood state as it acts as a mild stimulant and sedative depending on what mood state needs to be balanced. Brahmi capsules are also effective in relieving anxiety, stress, vertigo and mental fatigue. These capsules contain standardized extract of herb brahmi which is rich in bacoposides that acts as memory booster.

2. Stress Support

Planet Ayurveda expert team formulated these stress support capsule to combat any kind of day to day stress. These capsules contain herbs which are known to relax the mind and body and prevent oxidative damage due to stress. Ashwagandha, Brahmi and Tagar (the valerian herb) are the herbs used in this formulation. Ashwagandha builds up the ojas and pacifies vata dosha situated in the nervous system and mind Stress support capsules of planet Ayurveda helps in boosting memory, concentration and reduces anxiety, fatigue of mind and body. These capsules are best remedy for depression and insomnia. It helps in inducing sleep naturally and manages the blood pressure.

3. Medhya Churna

Medhya churna is a powdered preparation, which is best supplement to improve memory, concentration. This formula is inspired from the ayurvedic classical formula 'saraswat churna'. This churna is effective in people with confused mind, cloudy thoughts, lack of concentration, forgetfulness, epilepsy, insomnia, lack of confidence, nervousness etc. It contains ashwagandha, vacha, ajmoda, jeeraka (shweta and Krishna), sonth, marich, pippali, sankhpushpi and brahmi, which acts synergistically on nervous system, digestive system and immune system. It rejuvenates the system as rich in antioxidants and makes the brain sharp.

Some Guidelines for Bipolar Patients

  • Take food that pacifies vata (sweet, sour and salty tastes as well as warm, moist and heavy foods pacifies vata dosha, diet rich in whole grains, cooked vegetables, fresh dairy products, nuts and oils)
  • Take medicated ghee (brahmi ghrit)
  • Take proper sleep (go to bed early and wake up at time of sunrise)
  • Meditation, pranayama, yogic practices are very helpful
  • Do activities like gardening, walking, swimming, any outdoor game
  • Take enema with luke warm water


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