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Ayurveda vs. Modern Medicine

Updated: Mar 22, 2020

How is Ayurveda different from Modern Medicine?

Ayurveda is not just a medicine, but it’s also a way of living. Ayurveda is an ancient science that originated some 5000 years ago.

Western medicine is symptomatic whereas Ayurveda looks at the root cause of the dis-ease. Holistic medicine as the name suggests is a wholesome approach to achieving health.

For instance, when you walk into an allopathic doctor’s office for a headache, the doctor checks your symptoms and writes you a prescription. Whereas an experienced Ayurvedic practitioner will get your detailed history, try to identify the root causes (‘hetus’ as they are called in Sanskrit), and work on eliminating them.

If digestion causes the headache, the Vaidya will address the digestion first, that will take care of your headaches. That is why etiology and diagnosis play a huge role in an Ayurvedic consultation.

Western medicine has one pill for each disease, while Ayurveda looks at the Roga (disease) and the Rogi ( patient) individually and provide a tailored treatment plan accordingly. The practitioner will identify your Dosha (Vata/Pitta/Kapha) and then prescribe your treatment. A vata type of headache is addressed differently than a Kapha prone headache. There is no one size fits all concept in Ayurveda.

Ayurveda is more of a preventative science and used to maintain health. Ayurveda not only talks about physical health, but also emotional and spiritual health. While Western medicine doctors are trained to prescribe a medication for each symptom, an Ayurvedic Vaidya also provides lifestyle changes and dietary recommendations.

A visit to a western doctor can be a quick trip, but expect at least one hour with your Ayurvedic practitioner.

There are pros and cons that come with both sciences. Western medicine practitioners are well trained to handle emergency situations and with the evolving high-quality biomedical technology, a plethora of treatments are available today. Ayurveda cannot be used alone during casualty.

When both the Western medicine practitioners and Ayurvedic practitioners work hand in hand, healthcare can tremendously be improved.

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