Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) means repetition of a particular behavior. For example, repeatedly washing of hands, repeatedly checking if the door is locked, repeatedly checking if the car is locked etc.
In obsessive compulsive disorder, the patient is aware of the repetitive behaviour and knows that it is wrong and needs correction but not able to control it.
Children with OCD don’t have enough chemical known as serotonin in their brain.
OCD in Ayurveda:
In Ayurveda, this condition is co-related with a condition known as Atatwa Abhinivesha. The word Atatwa means non-existent and Abhinivesha means ‘stubborn nature’ or ‘strict adherence.’ So, this condition collectively refers to the condition where the person believes in all the factors which does not exist or which are in fact are not correct.
The main cause of OCD according to Ayurveda has been attributed to “Pragnaparadha” which is defined as vibhramsha of Dhee, Dhruti and Smruti resulting in the failure of factors under decision making and controlling of mind.
Ayurvedic line of treatment for OCD in children:
- Avoidance of the causative factors
- Intake of wholesome and avoidance of unwholesome food
- Confidence building exercises and counselling sessions are helpful to a great extent
- Meditation, Yoga and Pranayam are quite useful for OCD
- Prescription of certain herbs and herbal remedies
What are the symptoms of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)?
Mostly, children having OCD might show symptoms of either obsessions or compulsions or both.
The most common symptoms of obsession include:
- Feeling upset if things are not in particular order
- Self-aggression in thoughts
- Unsubstantiated fear of bacteria or germs
The most common symptoms of compulsions include:
- Over-doing of things like cleaning hands
- Continuously checking the same things like locks and doors
- Counting things over and over again
Some children with OCD may show a sudden, brief, repetitive movements of the body parts like blinking of eyes, nose twitching, shoulder jerks etc.
How does Ayurveda help in treating OCD in children?
There are various herbs available that can help with various neurological mechanisms such as regulation of the chemical balance of the brain. Some of the herbs are:
- Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera): Ashwagandha is considered as one of the best remedies for obsessive compulsive disorder because it interferes with several brain mechanisms and balances the brain chemistry.
- It helps GABA (Gamma aminobutyric acid) – neurotransmitter of the brain to do its job i.e., suppressing the hyperactive brain activities.
- This herb can repair even damaged neural networks.
- Almonds: Almonds help in nourishing the brain and maintain health of the nervous system as well. Soak 10-15 almonds in the night. Grind them after removing the skin and prepare a fine paste. Heat 2 teaspoons of cow ghee and roast the paste in it for 5 minutes. Take this mixture everyday with or without adding sugar.
- Poppy Seeds: Poppy seeds are beneficial in relaxing the mind, relieving depression, nourishing the mind and body and enhancing the thought process. Soak 3 teaspoons of poppy seeds overnight. Make a fine paste in the morning by grinding them and take this paste on an empty stomach in the morning.
- Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri): There is no herb like Brahmi that can improve intelligence naturally. It is an excellent anti-oxidant herb as well.
- Due to the bitter principles, brahmi acts as a memory tonic, calms down the mind and acts as an energiser.
- It is quite useful in OCD, confusion, lack of mental composure, sleep disturbances, insomnia, feeling sleepy all the time, anxiety, nervousness, manic depressive psychosis etc.
- Brahm Rasayan: Brahm Rasayan is the natural remedy for OCD, anxiety, stress and tiredness.
- It is an herbal jam preparation.
- It rejuvenates the mind and body and improves intelligence and memory.
- 10 grams in the morning with ½ glass of warm milk half an hour before breakfast should be given to the children.
Tips for children suffering from OCD:
- Wake up early and go to bed early.
- Sleep for at least 7-8 hours at night as calm mind relieves anxiety and restlessness.
- Practice pranayama for at least 3 minutes.
- Practice relaxation techniques.
- Parents should not scold such children.
- Confidence, withstanding ability, moral support etc. are the boosting factors that help the children to cope with OCD.
This article is not a substitute to the standard Medical Diagnosis or personalized Ayurvedic Treatment! It is intended only for Information!
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