Pizhichil Treatment in Ayurveda, is a combination of oil massage and heat treatment. This therapy was mostly used by Maharajas in the olden days, and popularly known as treatment for aristocrats.A gentle, synchronized massage of up and down is carried out on all parts of the body other than the head are subjected to this treatment.The patient should lay on the treatment table and two to four trained therapists perform the massage under the supervision of a physician.It is
administered in seven standard positions, so that no area of the body is left uncovered.The word Pizhichil means ‘to squeeze’. During Pizhichil, oil is squeezed from a cloth dipped in warm medicated oil on the whole body and hence the name. Pizhichil, also known as kayaseka, forms a part of Purvakarma in the Panchakarma therapy.
It is an ayurvedic whole body therapy using lukewarm medicated oil and accompanied with co-ordinated massage therapy. It rejuvenates the nervous and muscular system of the body and stimulates blood circulation. Pizhichil therapy is an ideal combination of two classical Ayurvedic treatments – Snehana (oleation) and Swedana (sudation). Oleation is the oil therapy and is subdivided as external oleation and internal oleation. Sudation is the heat therapy.The combination of snehana and swedana combines the goodness of both oils and heat. In ancient times it was only prescribed to aristocracy and hence referred to as the treatments for kings.Pizichil is the Malayalam name of Kaya Seka or Taila Seka or Sarvanga Sneha Dhara Ayurvedic treatment. It is a specialty treatment from the closet of Ayurvedic time tested experience which is known for its exemplary benefits in psycho-somatic healing.
Pizhichil is a treatment procedure in which the herbal oils and or ghee are poured over the body of the patient in monitored streams for a fixed duration of time. It is a type of Parisheka Sweda (steaming or sweat inducing treatment in which hot or warm liquids are poured or sprinkled or showered over the body in streams).Thus, Kaya Seka or Pizhichil is a type of Sarvanga dhara (hot fomentation given by pouring hot or warm medicated liquids over the body in the form of shower or stream) in which herbal oils or ghee or a combination of both is used for stream pouring.In Pizhichil, along with pouring of the stream of oil, simultaneous massage is done to enhance benefits of the treatment.
Here, cloth dipped in lukewarm medicated oil is squeezed over the patient’s body uniformly and then the oil rubbed smoothly over the body of the patient by masseurs on either side. The session may take 1 hour including continuous oil pouring over the body, then rubbing and stimulating the skin using hands and special cotton cloths.Special caution has to be taken for the patient’s head should not get sweat during the treatment. A cloth is tied over the forehead of the therapy taker to prevent oil from getting into the eyes.
Fresh medicated oil is used every day and the duration of Pizhichil is decided by the Ayurveda expert after the body constitution of the individual has been determined. Normally the treatment may last fourteen to twenty-eight days.This is a highly rejuvenating treatment that enhances muscular tone and retunes the entire nervous system. It comes as a package in itself – a course of 10 days is necessary to gain its maximum healing potential.Recommended for: extremely high Vata dosha types, muscular aches and pains, rheumatic problems, osteo arthritis, insomnia, depression, sexual problems.Benefits: tones and rejuvenates the skin, promotes relaxation, blood circulation, nourishes muscles, nerves tissues, inner balance.