FERTILITY Problems: AYURVEDIC Perspectives

Ayurveda visualises the physiology and pathology in terms of the status of three elements called doshas, each one entitles specific area of responsibility. Tridoshas represent functions in the body as a whole. Any deviation from the physiological state of doshas can be manifested in definite areas depending on the specific cause and susceptibility in that particular area. Similarly, reproductive health is a reflection of overall health status. Fertility is the prime and ultimate function of reproductive entity in the body and it will be a natural outcome when body physiology ensures the total wellbeing, writes Dr. Jeena Aravind. U

Ojas is described as the essence of all the dhathus (the supporting and nourishing entities in the body) and it is crucial to maintain the optimal state of ojas to maintain perfect health. In fact, ojas provides immunological and psychological stability in a human being. The presence of adequate ojas in the couple at the time of copulation has a decisive role in fruitful coitus and healthy pregnancy.

Innovations made in the lifestyle seem to provoke the disease pathogenesis culminating in various disabilities in the aspects of normal physiology taking place in the body. Unhealthy eating habits like untimely food, inadequate or excess intake of food, intake before the digestion of previous meal, daily intake of pickles or pungent foods, masala, bakery foods, fried items, the food stuffs which are refrigerated and reheated etc. can hamper the whole functional health status of body, including the reproductive system. Stress, which is now a global epidemic, invites various health issues, including fertility problems. There is direct relationship of stress and metabolic issues with adverse reproductive outcomes. The increasing incidence of such issues demands much more emphasis on management through lifestyle interventions. Ayurvcda emphasises the need for pleasant psychological status in healthy conception which is very evident in the present scenario. Quality of sperm and ovum, the status of female reproductive system, appropriate period etc. are also relevant in conception. Vaidyas (physicians) are supposed to address these reproductive issues on a broader platform wherein healthy dietary habits, mental status etc. are also given due importance.

Menstruation often signals the health status, especially the reproductive health status of a lady. Habitual causative factors like suppression of urges along with changes in the menstrual pattern eventually end up in reproductive morbidity. Unhealthy lifestyle is the provoking factor in the long run that invites menstrual disorders as well. Proper care at the bleeding phase is very essential. Physical activities, including jumping, running, dancing and even excessive travelling on uneven roads, may better be avoided during bleeding phase. Fasting/ skipping food, suppression of urges like micturition etc. may interfere with menstrual flow and also present as dysmenorrhea very often. Suppression of urges like urination, defecation etc. is very common in the present busy world. This in the long run can definitely have an adverse effect on the menstrual pattern and reproductive health.

Deviations from the normal menstrual pattern with respect to amount ol bleeding, pain, interval, staining the cloth etc. should be noted and managed accordingly. Today’s teen agers do not get the proper Healthcare they deserve, barring some vitamins or iron supplements. Indulgence in junk foods is increasing among youngsters. Sedentary behaviour is associated with various health issues. It should be given core importance to healthy food
habits and lifestyle, including the food timing, the quality of food, frequency of defecation and parturition etc. Stress and strain during the bleeding phase interfere with proper menstrual flow and may favor abnormal menstruation with an underlying pathology. These habits in the long run may hamper the normal functional and/or structural integrity even in case of reproductive health and thereby fertility also.

Changes in the reproductive life conclude to a perception that in fecundity increases even by utilizing the ovulation period only and target oriented sexual intercourse rather than a normal sexual play among the couple. Ageing of the couple will be reflected in the quality of gametes too. Recurrent infections among the couple often hinders with fertility. Now-a-days, even leisure time activities are also sedentary. Physical activity either in excess or less can often be related with adverse fertility outcomes. Physical activity helps to improve overall wellness.

Normal menstruation is a part of well-being of the woman during reproductive age. Moreover, it is an important indicator of reproductive health and essential factor of healthy conception also. Any deviation from the normalcy in case of menstrual pattern and vaginal discharge should be created at the earliest. Financial constraints and emotional burdens have also to be taken into account as they can affect the outcome. In the province of fertility care, irrespective of the stunning array of various treatment options, individualized lifestyle intervention may be considered as the best way out.

Dr. Jeena Aravind. U
Associate Professor,
Department of Prassothi Sthreerogam,
Ashtamgam Ayurveda Chikitsalayam &
Vidyapeedham,
Vavannoor, Palakkad.

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