Ashtanga Hrudaya Sutrasthana (Nasya Vidhi Adhyaya)

The 20thchapter of Ashtanga Hrudaya Sutrasthana is the Nasya Vidhi or Nasal medication written by Acharya Vagbhat. In this chapter we explains about types, methods, indications and contra indication of nasal instillation of medicine (Nasya Karma).


Nasya- Nasal medication is especially described for the treatment of diseases of the parts above the shoulders like throat, mouth, nose and head.

Nose is the entrance for the head, spreading through this; the nasal medication reaches all the parts of the head and neck and cures the diseases.


Snuff ,



Types of Nasya-

Trividha Nasya – Nasal medication is of three kinds

  1. Virechana Nasya/ Purgatory
  2. Brimhana Nasya/Nourishing
  3. Shamana/Palliative

1. Virechana Nasya – 

Virechana Nasya does purification. It expelled out the Doshas of head and neck from the body. In purgative Nasya medicated powders or herbs blown into the nose. Purgative nasya is helpful to manage Kapha disorders.

It is also usable in-

 Shirashoola( headache) 

Jadya – heaviness, stiffness and difficulty in moving of the head,

Abhisyanda – disease of eyes (conjunctivitis)

 Galamaya – diseases of the throat,

Shopha – swelling/inflammation

 Ganda – enlargement of glands

 Krumi – worm infestation

 Granthi – tumour and fibroids

 Kushta – skin problems

Apasmara And Peenasa –epilepsy and rhinitis

2. Brimhana Nasya –

Brimhana nasya is useful for Vata disorders and uses ghee, oil, salt, milk, and other nourishing substances such as meat or blood of animals of desert- like lands, mixed with Khapura –plant extracts, resin, Gums etc.

. It is a nourishing type nasya which is required for

Vataja shola-headache of vata origin

Suryavarta – Headache that increases by the day

Svarakshaya – loss of voice, Nasa

Asya Shosha – dryness in the nose and mouth

Vak Sangha – Difficulty to speak

Krichra bodha – difficulty in opening of eyes

Apabahuka- difficulty of movement of the Arm.

3.Shamana Nasya-

In shamana nasya medicated oils with Tikta ghee for increased Vata or Pitta ,

Brahmi ghee for aggaravated  Pitta , and Vacha oil for Kapha or Vata disorders.

Palliative nasal medication is required in-

Neelika – blue patches on the skin

Vyanga –discoloured  /besmear patch on facial skin

Diseases of the hair and of the eyes.

Some Other Type Of Nasya-

Marshya NasyaGhee is administered into the both nostril and massaged to provide relief from stress.

Pratimarsha –it is very good from birth to death just like basti( enema) treatment.  Marsha and pratimarsha Nasya provides  same benefits(oil, high dose if used daily, it does not need any precautions  – regarding food and activities nor it has any risks like Marsha Nasya

Navana Nasyadecoctions, fresh juices, and oils that are used together and administered according to the aggravated dosha. Used for pitta-vata or pitta-kapha disorders.

Avapeeda Nasya–  Avapeed means compression and in this therapy the herbs are compressed to obtain the savaras (juice) and  kalk (paste) to administer in the nostrils is called as the avapeed nasya.

Dhmana Nasya-  

In this  the form of powder to be blown into the nose with the help of air from the mouth, medicated powder kept in a tube of six Angula in lenth.this tube having opening at both its end. It expelled out the greatly imbalanced Doshas because it is in the form of powder.

Nasya Matra (Quantity of Nasal medication):-

Bindu is the unit of measurement explained for the dose of Nasya one Bindu is considered as one drop. The amount of liquid that drops after diping two digits of the index finger in any liquid and taking the finger out forms one bindu( drop)

10, 8 and 6 such drops are the maximum, medium and minimum doses, respectively of Marsha Nasya (oil / fat medication).  maximum, moderate and minimum does of Avapidaka kind of nasya are 8,6 and 4drops respectively.

Indication Of Nasya Karma-

morning for Shleshma – increase of Kapha,

during midday for pitta,

in the evening or night for the healthy.

During Sharad (Autumn) and Vasantha (Spring)Ritu

It should be given in forenoon.

During winter, it should be given in midday.

Evenings in Grisma –summer,

when there is sunlight during Varsha- rainy season.

It should be done two times a day ( evening and morning )daily in the following disorders.

Vataja shiroroga –headache of vata origin

Hikka – Hiccup,

Ayama – tetanus,

Apatanaka – Convulsive disorders,

Manyasthambha – stiffness of the neck, and

Svarakshaya – hoarseness of voice,

  • In other diseases, it should be done on every alternative days for a week

 Nasya Vidhi (Method Of Nasal Medication)-

  • elimination of urine and faeces,
  • Washing of the teeth and mouth.
  • Adequate dhoompan
  • Patients should lie down on bed (Nasya Shaiya).
  • Put oil on the scalp for  massasge
  • Mrudu sneha on head
  • According to Ayurveda swedana should not be given on the head but it is only done for elimination and liquification of doshas.
  • After swedana smooth massage should be applied on following regions eg. Gala, kapola and lalata Pradesha.
  • During Nasya the patient should close his one nostril and should inhale the drug through the other.
  • In this manner two or three nasal medications should be administered to him.
  • If patient goes unconscious then cold water should be sprinkled over the face, avoiding head.

Features Of Adequate Nasya-

Langhana –lightness in the body

Nindra –good sleep

Shiralaghuta –lightness in the head

Srotas shuddhi-cleaning of channles

Indriya prasanana-sensorial happiness

Mana prasanana-mental happiness

Features Of Inadequate Nasya-

Indriya rukshta-dreness in senses

Aprasamana roga- no relief in disease


Anga guravam-heavyness in body

Nasa, Netra and Mukha srawa-hper secretion

Features Of Excessive Nasya-


Indriya vibhrima-confusion

Kapha srawa- excessive salivation

Contraindication Of Nasya-

Nasya medication should not be administered to persons who

Have just then consumed water, wine, artificial poison /chronic poisoning (Garavisha) and fat (as

Part of Snehana therapy or who wish to consume them, soon,

Who have taken food just then,

Who have already taken bath or who desire to take bath-soon,

Who have had blood letting therapy- or severe bleeding due to other causes,

Who are having acute rhinitis,

Who are getting natural urges of the body;

The woman who has recently delivered,

patients of dyspnoea, COPD, Asthma and cough,

those who have undergone purification (Panchakarma) therapies (Vamana and Virechana)

who have been given Basti treatment – just then,

at unsuitable seasons and

on Sunless cloudy days except in emergency during diseases.

Kriya Nisiddha Vayas (unsuitable age for therapies) –

Nasya should not be administered to those who are less seven years and more than 80 years of age;

Dhuma- inhalation of smoke of drugs should not be administered for children below 18 years; Kavala- mouth gargling should not be administered for children below five years

Shodhana – purification (Panchakarma) therapies like Vamana, Virechana etc. should not be administered below 10 years and above 70 years of age

Benefits Of Nasya ( Nasya Phala) –

The skin, shoulders, neck face and chest become thick, well developed and bright; The body parts and the sense organs become strong disappearance of grey hairs will be obtained by persons who becomes habituated to nasal medication