Bal Roga or Kumar Bhritya is the branch of Ayurveda that deals with the healthcare and remedies of children. Kashyap Samhita the ancient Ayurvedic text has major references to the diseases of children namely Bal Roga. It deals with all kinds of parental care and treatment of illnesses affecting children starting from their birth up to their teenage. The therapeutic system covers every aspect of the child’s life. It primarily addresses the developing immunity and maintaining proper growth of the child. It contains detailed methods of monitoring the child’s growth and checking if it is normal.
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Ayurveda is a 5000-year-old holistic science of healthy as well as healthy living. This ancient Indian healthcare system contains elaborate texts detailing the treatment and prevention of diseases and healthy living. Ayurveda has specialized branches to deal with the varying needs of patients.
The eight main divisions of Ayurveda are Kaaya Chikitsa, the branch of internal medicine, Bal Roga or Kumar Bhritya meaning pediatrics, Grah or Bhoot Vidya that deals with psychotherapy, Shalakya Tantra, which is the science dealing with eyes, hearing, nose, throats, Shalya meaning surgery, Agada Tantra, the science dealing with toxicology, Rayasan the rejuvenating science and Bajikaran, the aphrodisiac science. Bal Roga and Kumar Bhritya is the branch that deals with childhood illness and their treatment and child-rearing until they become youth.
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According to Kumar Bhritya, the mental and physical condition of the mother during pregnancy impacts the health of the child much significantly. Therefore the food habits known as ‘Ahar’ and lifestyle called ‘Vihar’ in Ayurveda of the mother are very much responsible for delivering a healthy baby.
Kumar means child and Bhritya refers to the parent and this science serves as a guide to the parent who is the caretaker of the child. It speaks in detail about the ways of bringing up a child in a healthy way from the stage by prevention and the scientific methods of diagnosis and treatment of childhood diseases and the symptoms.
The study of Bal Roga and Kumar Bhritya is divided into three divisions as in modern medical science. They are Stree Roga Vigyan (Gynecology), Prasuti Vigyan (Obstetrics and Fetal Medicine), and Balchikitsa Vigyan (Pediatrics).
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Pediatric Ayurveda addresses all the aspects of the child’s life and explains elaborately the four different stages of prevention and care of child health namely:
- Difficulty in conception, the causes, and treatment to correct the condition
- Care of the fetus and ensuring its proper development in the uterus.
- Avoiding maternal illness during pregnancy to protect the fetus’s health
- Dealing with problems or difficulties during childbirth
The book written on Pediatric Ayurveda by Vridhajeevak is known as Kaashyap Sahita/Vridhajeevak Tantra. Some other important books on Bala Roga and Kumar Bhritya are
- Kumar Tantra
- Bandhak Tantra
- Parvatak Tantra
- Harinyaksha Tantra
- Vridha Kaashyap Sahita
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Why Pediatric Ayurveda is Important
The foundation of a healthy life of an individual is laid in childhood. The care of the child in every aspect of its growth namely physical, mental and psychological levels will result in the growth of the child into a healthy adult. Children are more prone to infectious diseases than adults and the diagnosis is different and also difficult in children than in the case of adults. This is because children are not willing to physical examination and the treatment involves the use of sweet-tasting medicines as children may refuse to take other medicines due to bad taste.
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Books available on Amazon -Pediatric Ayurveda
1. Kumar Tantra (Kaviraj Yaminibhusan 1920)
2. Komar Bhritya (Acharya Raghuvir Prasad Trivedi 1948)
3. Kumar Tantra Samuchay (Acharya Ramanath Trivedi 1977)
4. Baal Rog Chikitsa (Acharya Ramanath Trivedi)
5. Abhinav Komar Bhritya (Acharya Radhanath – 1978)