Mumps (Karna Mulika Jwara / Pashangadarbha)
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Introduction

 

Mumps was one of the commonest ailments affecting people all over the world until just a few decades ago. But now with the development of a very effective vaccine against the disease in the 1960s, the cases of mumps have drastically reduced, at least in the developed countries. In the third world countries, it still remains an issue and needs care.

Definition of Mumps (Karna Mulika Jwara)

 

Mumps or parotitis is a viral infection of the parotid glands, which are glands that produce saliva located just below the ear. Due to mumps, the parotid glands swell up, causing bulkiness of the cheeks and the region below the lower jaw.

Ayurveda treats mumps as a pitta disease. Its Ayurvedic name is pashangadarbha. Since mumps is always accompanied by a preliminary fever, it is also classified as a jwara. As a jwara, it is called as karma mulika jwara. Here it must be noted that pashangadarbha is the name of the entire condition of mumps, while karma mulika jwara is the name given to the fever that precedes mumps.

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Causes of Mumps (Karna Mulika Jwara)

According to Ayurveda , pashangadarbha is a disease caused due to the vitiation of the pittadosha, the humor which controls the fire element of the human body.

Mumps is a viral disease. The virus that is responsible for the onset of mumps in the human body is known as the paramyxovirus. The virus leaves in the saliva of the person. Hence any contact with the saliva of the infected person is the surest way to get mumps.

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Mumps Symptoms(Karna Mulika Jwara)

About 20% of the people suffering from mumps will not show any mumps symptoms at all. However, in the rest, two days after the infection, the following mumps symptoms are observed:-

The most prominent symptom is the puffiness of the cheeks which is caused due to the swelling of the parotid glands. There may be swelling of the earlobes also, which will make the whole face look enlarged. Swelling may persist anywhere from three days to a week.

Fever is very common during mumps, and the temperature of the body can increase up to 103 F. The fever is the starting symptom of mumps.

A person with mumps will feel weak and get tired very easily.

The victim of mumps will observe pain in the cheeks, which is felt more drastically when chewing or swallowing food.

People suffering from mumps have persistent sore throat. In some cases, the aggravation could be so serious that the person finds difficulty in talking and may talk in whispers.

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Complications of Mumps (Karna mulika jwara)

Mumps is a self-limiting disease, i.e. it takes care of itself and the mumps symptoms are brought under control automatically after a while. Due to this, in most cases mumps does not get complicated very much. The mild complications that can occur are as follows:-

  • Inflammation of the testicles, termed as orchitis (this may cause sterility of the man if it lasts long enough)
  • Inflammation of the ovaries known as oophoritis (this may cause sterility of the woman if it lasts long enough) and inflammation of the breasts known as mastitis
  • Inflammation of the pancreas known as pancreatitis
  • Abortion if the woman with mumps is pregnant

In rare instance, mumps can get severely complicated. The drastic complications of mumps are as follows:-

  • Inflammation of the brain (meningitis) and/or the spinal cord (encephalitis)
  • Permanent deafness

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Transmission of Mumps (Karna mulika jwara)

Just as in all viral infections, there is a high transmission rate in mumps also. At least there was, before the vaccine was developed.

The mumps virus, paramxyovirus, lives in the upper respiratory tract of humans. Hence, it can be transmitted through salivary discharges of an infected person. Therefore, the following activities can pass on mumps from an infected person to another:-

  • Sharing cups, glasses and other drinking vessels
  • Kissing
  • Coming in contact with an infected person’s saliva in any way

A person with mumps is very likely to spread the virus to other people. From three to six days after the mumps symptoms make their appearance, the person is extremely infectious. Due to this, much care needs to be taken by the family members of people who have mumps.

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People who are at Risk of Mumps (Karna mulika jwara)

Though mumps can affect people of all ages, most cases of mumps are found in children up to the ages of fourteen years. Mumps can begin from anywhere after five years of age, but cases of occurrence below this age have also been recorded. Children are not affected from mumps in the first year of their lives.

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Prevention and Basic Care during Mumps (Karna Mulika Jwara)

Obviously a lot of care is required if there is a person with mumps at home. The following tips must be kept in mind:-

  • All the utensils of the affected person must be kept and washed separately.
  • Physical contact with the patient must be avoided.
  • Since some strains of paramyxovirus can be passed through urine, it is also necessary to keep the clothing separate and wash them separately.

Taking care with a mumps patient at home is very important; but one plus point is that a single affectation from mumps gives a person lifelong immunity from the disease. However it is important to take care that the first infection does not spread to other people, or there is a risk of an epidemic.

Furthermore, a mumps patient must take care of the following:-

  • The neck must not be exposed to cold winds. It should always be covered with a scarf or a shawl.
  • The person with mumps should not be allowed to get wet much.
  • While sleeping, it is necessary to keep the body covered with a sheet.
  • Take absolute care while coughing or sneezing, since that can spread the paramyxovirus through the saliva.

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Diet for People with Mumps (Karna mulika jwara)

It is important to take proper diet during pashangadarbha because of the simple reason that the sufferer loses his or her appetite and does not feel like eating anything. However, proper nutrition is required in order to remove the imbalance of the pitta vitiation. The diet must be a pitta pacifying diet.

People with mumps must follow the dietary guidelines given below:-

The diet must be a primarily liquid diet. Rice water (kanji) is very good. It can be flavored with some ghee and taken along with a piece of pickle of raw mango.

The foods given to the patient must not be acidic; hence all citrus juices and curds are out.

Spices such as garlic, ginger and black pepper are good for people with mumps.

All kinds of oily and pungent foods must be strictly avoided. They could make the fever last longer.

Solid foods must be avoided. These foods take longer for digestion, and that could increase the digestive fire, i.e. pitta.

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Ayurvedic Treatment of Mumps (Karna mulika jwara)

Mumps is a familiar condition since centuries to the proponents of Ayurveda . For this reason, there has been a lot of research into the herbs that are beneficial in mumps. The following is a list of some of the traditionally used herbs along with their benefits on the human body.

Ayurvedic Name of the Herb

Biological Name of the Herb

Common English Name of the Herb

Action on the Human Body

Ghee Kanwar

Aloe barbadensis

Indian Aloe

The leaf of the Indian aloe has benefits in mumps. But it has to be used in a special way. The leaf must be peeled from one side, warmed, sprinkled with turmeric and then smeared with the paste of Indian Barberry. This leaf must then be placed on the cheek. Alternatively, it can be tied as a bandage.

Harad or Haritaki

Terminalia chebula

Chebulic Myroblan

Haritaki is one of the most effective Ayurvedic remedies for mumps. A paste of this herb is applied locally over the affected regions.

Lavanga

Syzygium aromaticum

Clove

The oil of the clove must be mixed with olive oil and rubbed from the inside the cheeks. This provides relief from the pain of the mumps.

Methi

Trigonella foenum graecum

Fenugreek

Fenugreek seeds are mixed in an equal proportion with asparagus seeds. This provides relief from mumps swellings.

Neem

Azadirachtha indica

Margosa

Neem is also very effective in the treatment of mumps. A paste of the leaves of this tree is made in water and this paste is applied over the affected parts. In order to get better benefits, turmeric can be mixed in the paste.

Peepal

Ficus religiosa

Peepal

The peepal is another beneficial remedy. The peepal leaves are mixed with ghee, warmed over a fire and then the paste I applied over the affected parts to get relief.

Rasaut

Berberis aristata

Indian Barberry

For the use of Indian Barberry in the treatment of mumps, refer to the application of Indian Aloe leaf as mentioned above.

Shatavari

Asparagus racemosus

Asparagus

Seeds of asparagus are ground with seeds of fenugreek. This paste is then applied on the affected parts to obtain relief from the swelling of mumps.

Sunthi

Zingiber officinale

Ginger

Perhaps ginger is the most widely known Ayurvedic treatments for mumps. A dry paste of ginger is applied over the affected regions. When the paste dries off, there is tremendous relief obtained from the pain of the mumps.

The herbs mentioned above have been expertly mixed into preparations. These preparations contain just the right proportions of herbs so as not to produce major side effects. The following are some herbs that are effective in the treatment of mumps:-

  • Chaturbhuja Rasa
  • Rasasindura
  • Daru Haridra
  • Naradiya Laxmivilasa
  • Dashanga

Benefit is obtained by using a paste of limestone and jaggery and applying over the swollen parts. Limestone contains calcium which is effective in the reduction of the swelling.

It must be borne in mind that while taking any Ayurvedic preparation, the doctor must be consulted first. Most of the herbs do not have any side-effects (and are indeed a regular part of the diet), but some people may be allergic to certain herbs and may show adverse reactions.

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Comment Script

Comments

aurvedic treatment is best.i am very happy for this info
#1 - shubham - 05/10/2009 - 00:15
Correction. In causes of mumps.
(fifth line ) the virus lives in the saliva.
#2 - R.kapoor - 01/14/2012 - 07:05
Kanchnar guggul is on of the most ayurvedic medicine for mumps .
#3 - Kanchan - 05/20/2012 - 20:59
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