The Maharishi AyurvedaSM Approach to
Migraines and Headaches
Chronic conditions like headaches are usually caused by a variety of imbalances that have become deeply embedded in the physiology over years. True healing of these conditions require a comprehensive approach, using several healing modalities.
The four-step program offered at The Raj provides the breadth of recommendations, and length of treatment necessary for making significant progress with natural health therapies. Following is a brief description of our four-step program, immediately followed by a thorough discussion of how Maharishi Ayurveda addresses the headache condition.
Introduction to the Knowledge and Practice of Healthy Daily Routine
The Raj Recipe Book
2. Home Preparation for In-residence Treatments
When you schedule your in-residence stay our staff will ask you some health related questions that allows our Ayurveda Health Consultant to individualize a home program that you follow for several weeks before you arrive at The Raj. This program starts to improve digestion, balance the body and eliminate impurities to prepare you to gain maximum benefit from your in-residence program.
3. In-residence Treatment Program
Each day of your 5-21 day stay at the Raj you will receive 2-3 hours of Maharishi Rejuvenation TherapySM treatments to cleanse the body of toxins and impurities that are creating the imbalance at the basis of your condition. These In-residence cleansing programs are the foundation of the Maharishi Ayurveda approach to headaches.
4. Post-treatment Home Recommendation Program
You will have at least two visits with our Ayurveda Health Consultant during your stay at The Raj. Your Ayurveda Health Consultant will provide you with a comprehensive set of recommendations you can use at home to stabilize the gains you made during your stay at The Raj and continue to progress toward better health.
We highly encourage everyone to study the following material on the Maharishi Ayurveda approach to headaches and start gaining benefits immediately through the two-booklet Introductory Education program.
Natural Health Programs by an Ayurveda Health Consultant
The Raj headache program is conducted under the supervision of an Ayurveda Health Consultant and draws on knowledge from Maharishi Ayurveda, the world's oldest and most complete system of natural health.
Through its unique assessment of causal imbalances at the basis of a condition and its wide range of time-tested recommendations, Maharishi Ayurveda provides the most comprehensive approach for headaches available in natural health today.
Causes and Treatments
Modern medicine classifies headaches as either a primary disorder, as in migraine, cluster and tension headaches, or a secondary disorder where the headache is caused by other diseases. The Raj program addresses the primary disorders of migraine, cluster and tension headaches.
There is a general agreement as to what physiological changes in the brain create headache pain. In every case there must be some stimulation of the pain sensitive structures in the head. Stimulation of these pain centers is usually created by a dilation or constriction of blood vessel walls that aggravate nerve endings in the pain sensitive areas. It is less clear to modern medicine as to why certain stimuli like estrogen fluctuation, barometric pressure change, insomnia and hunger trigger migraines and other primary headaches.
Maharishi Ayurveda can often provide individuals with a new perspective on what is causing their headaches through its unique and subtle diagnostic techniques. Your Ayurveda Health Consultants perform an initial Ayurveda evaluation by determining which functioning modes have become imbalanced. Ayurveda describes how it is these imbalances in the inner intelligence of the body that prevent the natural self-repair processes from removing the physical sources of migraine and headache.
Your Ayurveda Health Consultants will also assess the contribution that mental stress and buildup of toxins may be having on your headaches. This Ayurveda evaluation aims to determine the root causes of vascular fluctuations in the brain and the resulting experience of headache pain.
After the evaluation of balance and imbalance your Ayurveda Health Consultants will provide you with natural therapeutic approaches to stabilize the nervous system, reduce stress and help cleanse the body of toxins.
This natural approach to truly heal the body differs markedly from modern medical treatment that is primarily drug based. Modern medicine uses different sets of drugs to:
- Help prevent headaches from occurring
- Stop them once they have occurred
- Reduce the pain of ongoing headache.
The problems with these drug-based approaches is that they are not all completely effective at removing headache pain; many can have some side-effects and few if any permanently remove the primary physiological imbalances that predispose individuals to headaches in the first place.
The nervous system mechanism at the basis of headaches
The vascular changes in the brain at the basis of headache pain are often created by nervous system instability. Excessive vascular wall dilation and constriction occurs due to an inappropriate response from the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. Ultimately it is the imbalanced performance of these divisions of the nervous system that creates the experience of headache pain.
Restoring stability and balance to nervous system functioning
The Maharishi Ayurveda program at The Raj provides the following approaches to restoring balance to nervous system activity.
1) Balancing the functioning mode in the body that controls nervous system activity
Ayurveda calls the principle of biological intelligence that controls nervous system and brain activity Vata. By diagnosing the extent and location of Vata imbalance within the body an Ayurveda Ayurveda Health Consultant is able to target a variety of natural recommendations to the root imbalances in Vata and nervous system function. Because Vata is the most commonly disturbed principle within the body there is a great wealth of recommendations within Ayurveda medicine to restore Vata's proper functioning.
2) Use of diet to prevent Vata imbalance
Certain foods increase the activity of Vata and others decrease Vata activity. Your Ayurveda Health Consultants will provide you with recommendations as to which foods and food groups balance Vata and which disturb it. By eating Vata balancing foods and avoiding Vata aggravating foods individuals can gain a powerful dietary approach to reducing imbalances at the basis of headache symptoms.
3) Cleansing the body of toxins and impurities
Toxin accumulation in brain tissue can aggravate and sensitize those tissues to pain. Impurities can also block channels of circulation and elimination which prevent nutrients from nourishing nerve tissues and waste from being eliminated. Your Ayurveda Health Consultants will provide natural recommendations to remove and help prevent toxin accumulation from:
- hard-to-digest foods
- Poor digestion
- Poor elimination
- Improper metabolism
- Mental and physical stress
4) Decreasing Vata and eliminating toxins through in-residence treatments of Maharishi RejuvenationSM therapy
Maharishi Rejuvenation therapy is the foundation of the in-residence program at The Raj. It contains the most powerful treatments in Maharishi Ayurveda for removing the imbalances at the basis of migraine and headaches. Each day of your program you receive a combination of Ayurveda massage, herbalized oil application, heat treatments and herbal enema. This multi-modality cleansing approach works by:
- Loosening impurities from where they have been deeply embedded in tissues.
- Liquefying the impurities so they may be more easily eliminated.
- Opening the channels of circulation thereby supporting natural cleansing processes.
The goal of rejuvenation therapy is to draw out of tissues the chemical impurities that are imbalancing Vata and clogging circulation.
5) Use of herbalized oil massage
Herbalized oil massage is especially helpful in balancing Vata and eliminating impurities. You will also be instructed in the technique of Ayurveda massage that involves using specific strokes over different parts of the body. The motion of massage creates heat and friction which enhance circulation and help cleanse the areas of chemical impurities that imbalance Vata.
Your Ayurveda Health Consultants will choose a specific herbalized massage oil that is individually prepared for your condition. For headache, the various herbs that have been boiled into a base oil, and the oil itself, are specifically chosen for their Vata balancing and cleansing influence. The oil allows the herbs to deeply penetrate the tissue beds, thereby balancing the nerve and other tissues throughout the physiology. The oil and herbs cleanse and nourish the tissues so that tissue development and repair is hastened.
Your program involves two types of Ayurveda herbalized massage:
- The home program involves herbalized self-massage for 5-10 minutes in the morning before you take your shower.
- During the in-residence portion of your program, highly trained Ayurveda technicians will give you a very specialized massage each day using oils in which as many as 50 herbs have been cured. These special oils are only available as part of the in-residence program.
6) Stress Management
Many individuals experience that headaches are often worsened by heightened stress, anxiety and mental fatigue. This may be due to hormonal changes and other biochemical responses to stress that can aggravate the nervous system, create pain and depress resistance. Also, headache symptoms can disturb sleep thereby increasing fatigue, making one susceptible to stress and aggravating headaches. The Raj Ayurveda Health Consultants recommend practice of the Transcendental Meditation® technique for removing the stress component of migraine and headache.
There are published articles on the effectiveness of TM practice for both pain relief and insomnia.
If you choose to learn meditation during your in-residence stay at The Raj, highly trained teachers of the Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique are available to instruct you in the practice. The TM technique has a wealth of scientific research verifying its effect on reducing many of the mental and stress factors influencing headaches. Research also shows it creates virtually the opposite physiological response that stress does and helps the body recover more quickly from stressful stimuli.
Practice of the TM technique twice a day is an ideal mental approach to the chronic headaches. The TM program at The Raj gets you off to a superb start with your practice and your instructor will help connect you with the local TM program center in your home area for any follow-up that you may desire.
7) Proper Lifestyle and Daily Routine
One of the most important factors for balancing Vata and keeping the natural cleansing processes strong is to have a lifestyle that does not disturb natural bodily rhythms. When we eat, sleep and exercise in constantly fluctuating and disturbing patterns, the body loses its natural balancing cycles and cannot cleanse or heal itself as effectively. Therefore, regularity in our daily routine can be extremely important for reducing headache symptoms.
Your Ayurveda Health Consultant will review your daily routine and provide the information you need to help create a daily schedule that will actually increase balance in your nervous system and aid in healing your body.
8) Ayurveda Herbs and Reduction in Free Radicals
Your Ayurveda Health Consultants will select the appropriate herbal formulas for aiding the healing process, strengthening digestion and helping the body purify itself of free radicals.
Free radicals are highly irritating to the physiology and their presence creates and worsens many disorders, including headaches. When appropriate, our Ayurveda Health Consultants can recommend Ayurveda herbs that research has shown contain powerful anti-oxidants and free radical scavengers. Two Maharishi Ayurveda herbal preparations have been shown to have 1000 times more powerful anti-oxidant properties than vitamin C or E. These herbs also have a holistic influence of balancing and nourishing the entire physiology.
Traditional Ayurveda theory says that herbs are most effective after a person completes an internal cleansing program. The cleansing and rejuvenation treatments that you will receive daily are the main focus of your in-residence stay. Once this program is finished, you are ready to gain maximum benefits from your herbal program.
9) Exercise and Flexibility Education
Maharishi Ayurveda considers proper stretching and flexibility exercises to have a very positive effect on the body's healing response, stress management and the treatment of many chronic conditions. During your in-residence stay at The Raj, we offer Yoga classes every day and teach you a simple but profound set of postures that can be practiced daily to create a healthy flexibility throughout the body. We also instruct you in individualized Yoga breathing practices that create a state of restful alertness in mind and body.
The Raj chronic disorder program is conducted under the supervision of an Ayurveda Health Expert and draws on knowledge from the world's oldest and most complete system of natural health. The program provides the most comprehensive approach in natural health to remove the imbalances at the basis of migraine, tension and cluster headache pain.
For detailed information on program structure and fees see Program Overview.
Wishing you perfect health,
Causes & Treatments
Ayurveda Health Consultations
The Transcendental Meditation Program
Maharishi Vedic Vibration Technology Consultations
Scientific Research on our in-residence Treatment Programs