How to Cure or Prevent Pasma
Learn How to Cure or Prevent Pasma
Pasma, a common health condition, is discussed in this article. Alongside that, learn about:
- What pasma is
- Pasma symptoms
- Pasma treatment and cures
- Pasma causes
- How to avoid pasma
What is Pasma?
- Pasma is a common Filipino folk illness that's also shared by most indigenous cultures. It occurs very commonly in folklore, but is popularly believed to be a real illness as well. Stories of its occurrence have been handed down from generation to generation. It is known to be stemmed from a very strong tradition, although there are no direct scientific findings yet.
- Pasma is attributed to the interaction of hot and cold. In other words, it's a "hot and cold imbalance." For example, cold water is believed to be harmful to one's health if one has been exposed to heat or has been in participating in vigorous work or activity that makes their body hot. Under certain conditions, the body's muscles are said to be very "hot" and, therefore, they should not be abruptly brought into contact with "cold." In this case, cold usually refers to cold water or an air-conditioned room.
Common Pasma symptoms include:
- Excessive sweating of the palms and feet
- Hand tremors
- Numbness and pain in various parts of the body
- An enhanced appearance in the veins
- Severe fever and colds
- Fever and colds that can lead to respiratory and brain malfunctions
- Nerve wreckage that causes blindness
The Common Phenomenon of Pasma in Stories:
- A man who came home from a tired day's work quickly took a shower right away. Then, he reportedly got sick after that. After that, he experienced several unexplained illnesses for weeks and died
- A woman who works as a chef went home and showered without resting even a bit. Moments later, her vision grew blurry. A nerve in her eye almost broke. She’s now lucky she can still see.
- A woman who always washes clothes or showers after ironing a mountain of clothes has noticed that she had varicose veins.
How to Avoid Pasma
You have nothing to lose if you practice avoiding Pasma. It is simple to avoid. Simply follow these tips:
- Don’t wash your hands or feet when you’re tired. Wash them after 30 mins of rest.
- Don’t shower or take a sponge bath immediately after a tiring day or after heavy workouts. Instead, first take a breather and relax for an hour or so before hitting shower.
- Don’t wash your face immediately after a long exposure to fire/cooking.
- Don’t iron clothes right after washing them.
Conclusion: Just don’t go into water when you’re so tired or has been exposed to heat. Relax, and take an hour or so of rest before doing so. It's the instant contact with the cold when your body's been heated for so long that's said to cause pasma.
How to Cure Pasma
- Using ginger, coconut oil, and alcohol. A concoction of ground or mashed ginger (luya) can be mixed with a little alcohol and coconut oil. This is a great remedy said to help with any especially tremulous, painful, or swollen extremities.
- Using ginger, garlic, camphor, onions, and more. Another preparation used in massage therapy is a concoction of ginger, coconut oil, onions, garlic, camphor, wintergreen, and a small amount of the scrapings from naphthalene balls.
- Using hugas-bigas. An even more easily accessible form of massage therapy is the use of hugas-bigas. Hugas-bigas is the leftover water that remains when you wash uncooked rice. It's great for using in your massage treatment, as well.
Wash and Soaks:
- Salt soaks: If you're experiencing sweating of the hands or feet, soak them in lukewarm salt water. Do this for an hour and a half to an hour.
- Salt and Bayabas leaves The salt residue from home ice cream makers can be mixed with water and boiled bayabas leaves. Make sure you especially wash and apply this mix to the affected areas.
- Salt and gas: The same ice-cream maker salt residue is mixed with "gas" (used for rural lighting), and used for washing the extremities.
- Hugas bigas (rice-water). As mentioned, the water leftover from washing your rice can be saved and used for washing with or in sponge baths.
- Tawas: Bathwater is also prepared with boiled tawas that is dissolved in it.
- Urine: In some provinces, the warm urine from your very first pee in the morning after you wake up is used as a soak-and-wash for tremors, numbness, and excessive sweating.
- Sand-and-Sweat Therapy. This is a seaside treatment that involves ditting a deep hole in the sand and then lying down in it, covered in sand for 3-5 hours.
- Herbal-Steam Therapy. The steam from boiling lagundi leaves (with or without kalamansi leaves) is funneled toward the body, sort of like a modified steam bath, for a half hour. Do this daily, if needed.
- Pasmang-bituka. A salted concoction made from of solasi (holy basil) are also used daily.
- Tawas. In regions where pasma is sometimes attributed to vengeful spirits, tawas is the folkhealer's favorite method of healing. It's also commonly supplemented with a bulong or orasyon.