Water Therapy: External Skin Care Routine

The first rule of Ayurvedic skin care is : cleanse, nourish and moisturise. No matter what type of skin you have, this three-step routine for the external care of the skin is essential to counteract the daily effects of environment, stress and the skin’s natural process of cell degeneration. It is the very minimum you must do to maintain a normal, healthy, youthful complexion. And even if you do nothing else for an existing skin problem, keeping this regimen every day can help to improve your condition, sometimes in a short period of time.

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Water Therapy: All Weather Skin Care

Along with stress and diel, environmental factors are one of the major causes of premature aging. Seasonal and climatic changes not only imbalance the subtle internal energies of the body and mind, but also have an effect externally on the skin. Sun, wind and cold can be particularly damaging unless you take action lo counter Lheir effects.

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Water Therapy: Hair Care

Hair is 97 percent protein and three percent moisture. The average person has 100,000 hairs on the scalp, which grow at the rate of .37 millimetres per day and shed at the rate of 50-100 per day The factors that affect hair growth and hair loss include age, health, diet, hormones, seasonal changes and climate. Trauma, stress and anxiety also affect growth because they reduce the blood and oxygen supply to the scalp, which is essential to healthy hair.

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Osteopathy: Growth of Osteopathy

Dr Andrew Tailer Still, the founder of osteopathy, was a man endowed with imagination, rare vision and perseverance. He was born on August 6, 1828, to a simple, hardy German farmer who was a physician by training and a missionary by choice. His mother Martha, was Scottish. Andrew was born in a remote village in Virginia, U.S.A . He was sturdy and strong and lived close to nature. He was fond of watching different animals. He would catch hares and squirrels and dissect them to find out the type of organs they had.

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Osteopathy: What part do nerves play in the symptom of a disease? Using bones as a leverage, how can one influence them? What role do arteries and veins play in the cure of a disease?

Dr.Still concluded that blood supply could be normalised a great deal by manipulative manoeuvres which relaxed the muscles and thus affected the free flow of blood. He declared, ‘The rule of the artery is supreme’. He was sure that the free flow of blood played a great role in overcoming disease.

Dr Still’s fame spread gradually. At no time, however, did he think his discovery to be complete. With the co-operation of his sons and doctors who were attracted towards his science, he founded a new branch of medical treatment which came to be known as Osteopathic Medicine. Dr Still planned to open a college of osteopathy. Assistance came in an astonishing way. Dr William Smith of Edinburgh, Scotland, was so impressed by Dr.Still that he offered to stay and teach anatomy in exchange for lessons in manipulative movements. The college at Kirksville, Missouri, opened in November 1892, and was given legal recognition.

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Osteopathy: Nucleus Pulposus

This is a soft , gelatinous, mucoid material at birth. It lies almost in the centre of the intervertebral joint. But as age advances, the anterior part of the body of the vertebra grows much faster than the posterior part. Hence it ultimately lies strictly behind the centre. It forms a cushion between the vertebrae. There is a resultant compression which exerts evenly distributed hydrostatic pressure. The pressure within the nucleus is considerable.

The disc can be damaged by direct or indirect trauma. If the disc is healthy, it would need to be hit by a considerable force to be damaged. Even an impact enough to damage the body of a vertebra is not sufficient to damage a healthy disc. It has been calculated that a normal adult disc can withstand a compression force of 545 kg per square inch before rupturing , while less than 450 kg of pressure is enough to damage the vertebral body. In normal weight bearing, when a person is standing or sitting, the compression force is 45 kg.

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Osteopathy: Curves of the Spine, Intervertebral Joints and Intervertebral Discs

The spine is not straight. If it is viewed from a side, four curves can be seen:
The cervical curve which is convex forward.
The thoracic curve which is convex forward. The upper part may have a slight lateral curvature directed towards the right side in a right-handed person and the left side in a left-handed person.

The lumbar curve is convex forward. It is more pronounced in females than males. It extends from the lower thoracic vertebra to the lumbo-sacral angle.It is larger than the upper two.

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Osteopathy: Understanding the Spine

It is very important to know the structure and functions of the spine before we begin to understand the cause of pain and what actually happens during manipulation. We must be familiar with the preventive methods and precautions we should take after the pain has gone so that we may not suffer from it again.

Understanding and becoming familiar with the anatomy or the structure of the human body is imperative to understand pathology or the disease process. Then only can we think of a remedy or treatment. Let us examine what our aim in manipulation is, and how these measures help to keep us healthy. Somebody has compared the human spine to a sitar and an osteopath to the maestro who plays the sitar. To learn the sitar, to master it, to produce new ragas, calls for a deep understanding and years of devoted practice.

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Osteopathy: Posterior Joints

From a strictly anatomical point of view the posterior joints of the spine are the true joints of the spine. The extent and the variety of movements depends on the shape and direction of the facet joints. They determine the extent of movement and direction of a particular segment. These facet joints are covered by a dense articular capsule which is quite elastic. thin and loose. They are attached just beyond the margins of the articular facets, and are larger and looser in the cervical than in the thoracic and lumbar spine.

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Osteopathy: Ligaments

The spine consists of a series of joints which are united from the second cervical to the first sacral by a number of ligaments. The vertebral bodies are united by anterior and posterior ligaments, and the posterior series of facet joints and neural arches are united by the ligamentum flavum. The function of these and other ligaments is to hold the bone together and yet allow some calculated movements.

The ligaments are elastic structures with an elastic limit. They remain healthy with intermittent stretching. Ligaments can be torn in two ways: sudden force and uninterrupted prolonged moderate stretching. This is why intermitted traction is more physiological than continuous sustained traction.

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