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Mother & Child Care

Dr. Vijay Singh Chauhan

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Prodromal Symptoms

Excessive salivation (ptyalism), swelling of the gums, painful gums, desire to chew something are the prodromal symptoms of teething disorders.

Home remedies / Medicines (Drug Therapy)

  • Powder of Pippali (Piper longum), Dhataki (Woodfordia fructosia) and Amalaki (Phyllanthus embelica) is applied on the gums of the child, for the teeth to come up quickly.
  • Borax with honey; Glycerin, or a piece of lemon is to be rubbed on the gums of the child.
  • Ghee medicated with Vacha (Acorus calamus), roots of Bruhatidwayam (Solanum xanthocarpum and Solanum indicum), Patha (Cissampelos pariera root), Katuka (Picrorrhiza kurroa), Musta (Cyperus rotundus) and drugs of Madhuraadi group can be given orally.
  • Ghee prepared with turmeric powder, Daruharidra (Berberis aristata), Sarala (Pinus longifolia), Shreyasi (Plantago amplexicolis), Brihati dwayam (Solanum indicum and Solanum xanthocarpum), Shatahwa (Foeniculum vulgare) can be given. The paste of the above drugs can also be given with honey.
  • A decoction prepared with Manjistha (Rubia cordifolia), Dhataki (Woodfordia fruticosa flowers), Lodhra (Symplocus racemosus), Kutannata (Cleosanthis indica) Bala (Sida cordifolia), Masha parni (Terminus labialis), Mudga parni (Phaseolus tribolus), Bilva fruit, (Aegle marmelos) Karpas phala (Gossypium herbaceum), milk, butter milk, ghee is used to cure disorders of dentition.

Topics of Special Interest Nursing Care of New Born/Infants

The br**st-feeding should start from the day of birth. This not only facilitates healthy galactogenesis in mother but helps develop better mother-child relationship also. Further, the colostrum, which is the secretion from the br**st prior to lactation for 3-4 days, is a rich source of specific anti-bodies. Thus, ingestion of colostrum starts building the immune system from the stage of infancy.

The measures suggested to enhance the immune system and intellectual capacity of new born need a special mention here. Such preparations known as Lehya Yogas are asked to be given right from the day of birth till 1 to 12 months of age.

These preparations contain honey and ghee as base and few natural immuno-modulators the best of which is said to be calx or the plain leaves of gold (known as Sone ka wark - used in India for icing the sweets).

According to Kashyap Samhita, the authentic treatise on Ayurvedic Paediatrics, administration of gold is reported to be totally safe. It improves memory, digestive and metabolic functions, and strengthens defense mechanism. It ensures long healthy life; alleviates/ prevents the infectious diseases; furthers growth and development; improves complexion and if given for six month’s regularly, makes a child SRUTADHAR, i.e. not forgetting what is learnt.

Personal Care

The necessary instructions pertaining to holding, handling and suckling the infants have been thoroughly discussed in Ayurvedic texts. Mother’s milk is supposed to be the best for child for physical as well as psychological development. In absence of mother’s milk, cow’s milk or goat’s milk has to be considered.

Other important aspects of personal care such as massaging the oil on body, skin pack applications, medicated baths etc. have also been discussed. Besides, it is also described that a comfortable bed, a peaceful ventilated bedroom makes the child relaxed and helps it grow well. According to Ayurveda, it is desirable that the naming ceremony is held as early as possible i.e. within 27 days. This helps a child to know about its own identity right from early infancy and thus helps in establishing higher mental functions from early infancy itself.

Protective Measures

  • The incantation/chanting of certain mantras soon after birth. This presumably exerts electro-magnetic effect on the nerve cells and initiates the organization of higher mental functions right from the time of birth.
  • It is advised to keep on fumigating the room of mother and child by burning the medicinal plant products and minerals such as margosa leaves, mustard, dill seeds, garlic peel, ajowan, vetiver, bedellium, for providing a germ free atmosphere. And since fumigation and would render the atmosphere dry, it is further advised to keep a water filled vessel near the cot of the mother and child to maintain the atmospheric humidity.
  • Protective measures also include wearing (or physically keeping in touch with) some precious stones suitable to one’s own horoscope since these stones are reported to have healing powers. By and large, it is accepted all over the world now a days.
  • For the welfare of new born child and mother during nights, Ayurveda advocates that the Light should be obtained by burning few processed oils such as processed from Nux vomica to avail the insecticidal effects. It could be considered equivalent to using ultra violet lamps in operational theatres now a days.
  • It is also advised to hang the margosa leaves or similar other leaves on the doors where a child is placed. This disallows the entry of insects and germs.
  • Quarantining the mother and child from routine people should also be offered at least for 10 days as mother and child are wounded and immunogically weak.

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