Surgery left me with chronic back pain and nerve damage down my legs. Sometimes the pain is so bad I feel suicidal. What do you recommend?
When confronted with damage to the nervous system, from sciatica to generalized back pain, we who practice Ayurveda typically investigate the nature of that damage as it relates to the Vata Dosha. One of the general areas we’re concerned with when considering Vata energy is movement within the body, which includes the relative strength or weakness of how well nerves move information to the brain in the form of pain and comfort.
While the nervous system is fragile to the point of being easily damaged as a result of the surgery you’ve experienced, the good news is that much of this pain is likely to be reversible. If you craft a lifestyle for yourself that puts an emphasis on balancing aggravated Vata energy (eating Vata-reducing foods, taking Vata-reducing herbs, practicing Vata-reducing yoga postures, etc.), you will likely settle down the amount of pain you experience. Though it would also be ideal for you to seek treatment from trained Ayurvedic practitioners, you may benefit from buying some sesame oil or herbalized Vata massage oil, warming it slightly on the stove, and massaging it into your skin — particularly in the places where you are experiencing pain. This oil will nourish the body and help to repair damaged nerves as well as relieve other toxicity in the body.
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