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Geriatric Medicines

By Dr. Rakhi Nagar

Maharishi Ayurveda Hospital

Ageing is a natural and inevitable process of physical, psychological and social change in multidimensional aspects. As the elderly people are rising in world population, it is now felt necessary to develop newer strategies for geriatric healthcare.

Geriatric medicine is a branch of science dealing with problems of 50+ yrs age group, consisting either sex. Ayurveda has a potential to contribute substantially to this newly emerging branch of medicine. Ayurveda has unique therapeutic methodology to delay ageing and to minimise the intensity of problems occurring in this degenerative phase of life.

The leading cause of mortality among aged elderly people compromise respiratory problems, heart disease, cancer and stroke. Significant cause of morbidity among elderly is chronic inflammatory and degenerative conditions such as arthritis, diabetes, osteoporosis, depression, psychiatric disorder, parkinsons disease and age related urinary problems.

Prevention and management of these health problems could help the elderly to improve quality of life and remain self –dependent for their daily activities to maximum possible extent. Ayurveda has a focused branch called Rasayana(rejuvenation) which deals with the problems related to ageing and methods to counter the same. Rasayana therapy provides higher resistance to diseases, brings calmness, de-stress the mind relieving it from anxiety, depression and stress related problems.

Prakuthi or mind-body constitution of a person give the picture about the specific vulnerability to disease, thus concrete steps (e.g. diet and lifestyle changes) could be taken to prevent the disease. Ayurveda has broad spectrum of preventive measures for combating the ageing process. In Ayurveda, treatment not only means taking the medicine but our daily routine called dinacharya and seasonal activity called rutucharya is very vital like lifestyle, food, sleep, exercise and thought process etc.

Old age healthcare is practiced in adherence to classical Ayurvedic principles with the aid of modern diagnostic modules. Treatment combined with yoga and specific diet recommendations.