The dark circles are now a common problem among the stress prone population in the world. Following some home remedies without knowing the root of the problem, does not give complete cure. Here are some views regarding dark circles in an ayurvedic perspective.
In ayurvedic point of view, it is a vata vriddhi lakshana (symptom of increase in vata dosha).
In the treatise Ashtanga Hridaya, Acharya Vagbhata clearly mentions about vata vriddhi lakshanas as:
Vriddhastu kurute anila:
Karshya karshnya ushna kamatva…..
Which can be translated as aggravated vata dosha causes emaciation, blackish discolouration, liking towards hot substances, tremors, abdominal distension and so on. However in this big list hides the key word – “karshnyata” which means the blackish discolouration. The dark circles under the eyes are clearly the signs of increase of vata. In modern medicine, the factors that attributes to dark circles also correlate to the vata aggravating factors.
Some of the known causes attributed to the cause of dark circles are:
- Sleep deprivation – not getting enough sleep in the night clears aggravates vata, increases dryness and roughness in the body
- Stress/ Anxiety/Depression – again a main cause of vata and pitta aggravation. Increased vata alters the mental functions of an individual. Eyes also remain under stress when one s constantly looking into the smart phones/ computers. This atiyog or misuse of the sense organs causes vata aggravation.
- Ageing: Ayurveda says that old age is the period of vata where all the body tissues gets depleted. Clearly in old age there is depletion of the subcutaneous fat tissues and thinning of the skin under the eyes that causes darkening of the skin of that area.
- Dehydration – Water deprivation in the body increases the dryness , roughness, and heat and thus causes thinning of the arteries under the eyes which are clearly the symptoms of increase in vata and pitta.
- Dietary factors: Use of excess salt in diet that may cause fluid retention under the eyes making it discloured. Also the intake of food that are dry in nature and cold in potency aggravates vata. Here includes the big list of dry fruits and nuts too.
- External factors: Certain allergens present in the makeup causes hyper pigmentation of the skin.Other factors like trauma also might cause dark circles that takes a long time to get cured.
- Application of oil all over the body and massage of the scalp helps reducing stress/ anxiety depression and restores good sleep thus reducing dark circles.
- Consumption of dairy based products particularly, desi ghee helps. Desi ghee or butter can also be applied under the eyes to see appreciable results.
- Application of eye pack with smashed apples or cucumber or potatoes help in reducing the dark circles when done atleast thrice in a week for 6 weeks.
- Rose water soothes the eyes like nothing else. Apply a cotton pad dipped in rose water 10 minutes prior to sleep.
- Application of kunkumadi tailam reduces dark circles and imparts a glow to the face. Use it daily massage with the tip of the fingers for best results.
- Stay hydrated
- Avoid indulgence in cold drinks, tea, coffee, dry fruits and nuts / cold, dry food like bread. Also minimize the use of beans as it increases vata dosha.
- Avoid spicy, astringent and bitter foods.
- Practice pranayama: Pranayama helps in regulating the breath and thus vata dosha Hence it helps in reducing stress, anxiety and helps in coping up with depression.
- Sleep for atleast 6-7 hours in the night.
- Use good quality makeup.