Vitiligo or Leukoderma as it is often known is characterized by white patches all over the body and scalp. It is caused by loss of melanin pigments (melanocytes) that is responsible for the skin colour. It usually begins in the form of a small white patch but over a period of time may spread to the entire body. Though it is a non-infectious disease it is associated with lot of social stigma and may have a psychological impact.
In AYURVEDA vitiligo is termed as switra or kilasa.The three varieties of switra are vatika paithika and kaphaja showing the features of vitiation of vata, pitta and kapha respectively.
In vata predominant switra the affected skin will be dry and light red in colour.Skin in pitta predominant switra will be coppery red in colour with burning sensation and scanty hairs.Kapha predominant switra presents with thick white skin often with itching.
Switra involves rakta,mamsa and medo dhatus.Switra is a non infectious, non exudative affection involving mainly skin.The disease becomes incurable very quickly. Also it requires extensive and long term treatment. Ayurveda insists on early management of this condition as it spreads like forest fire.
Vitiligo is usually considered as an autoimmune disease. An autoimmune disease is one in which the body’s immune system destroys its own body tissues.
Symptoms include white patches all over the body i.e. hands, face, feet etc and premature graying of hair on eyelashes, eyebrows, scalp and beard.
Various treatment options are available but it has been very difficult to treat this completely. Ayurveda is by far considered to be the safest and best option as it has NO SIDE EFFECTS.
Ayurveda provides a holistic approach by treating the disease rather than treating the symptoms. It helps in improving the body’s metabolism and in turn body’s immunity. It also helps in cleansing and purifying the blood and restores the skin colour. It not only remedies but also arrests the spread and recurrence of the diseases.