Venom Allergy (Keetavisha)
Ayurvedic Treatment of Venom Allergy - Causes, Symptoms and More
About Venom Allergy
Venom allergy refers to a hypersensitive reaction by the immune system to the injected venom by some insects with stings. The allergy occurs when the immune system identifies the proteins in the venom as a threat by mistake and as a result initiates an exaggerated response. Some of the common insects that may start an allergic reaction are bees, wasps, fire ants, and yellow jackets. The symptoms of venom allergy include redness, pain, swelling at the site of insect sting to some severe systemic reactions such as difficulty in breathing or hives. Therefore, insect stings need quick Venom Allergy treatment and Ayurveda implementing natural approaches provide effective solutions to these issues.
In Ayurveda, Acharyas (teachers) mention about Keetavisha (poisoning by insects) in which symptoms and treatment of various insect bites are explained. Dr. Gupta’s IAFA is a pioneer Ayurvedic institution that has successfully managed thousands of patients with allergic conditions including venom allergy through 100% natural and herbal ayurvedic treatment to manage symptoms associated with insect sting allergies.
Ayurvedic Reference of Venom Allergy (Keetavisha)
Causes of Venom Allergy
The venom allergy occurs from an overactive immune response to proteins present in the venom of some insects. The main causes of venom allergy are described below:
1. Increased Sensitivity to Venom Proteins
If a person had an insect bite then the immune system reacts strongly to the proteins present in the venom. Sometimes, the first exposure can make the immune system more sensitive and respond in a hyperactive manner on subsequent bites.
2. Genetic Factors
Some individuals are more sensitive towards proteins present in the venom and exhibit a heightened allergic response due to some genetic factors.
3. Type of Insect
Different insects have different amounts of venoms for example insects like bees and wasps have higher concentration of venom that has a higher probability of initiating an allergic response.
4. Immune System Sensitivity
Some people have a sensitive immune system which makes them more prone to allergic reactions on being exposed to venom proteins. Now let’s discuss which families of insects trigger an allergic reaction.
Following are the three major families of insects that cause allergy on bite.
- Vespidae: Include insects like yellow jackets, hornets, wasps
- Apidae: Include bees like honey bees, bumblebees, sweat bees
- Formicidae: Fire ants (commonly cause Anaphylaxis), harvester ants
In Ayurveda, there is reference about various insects that bite human beings and give rise to allergic responses. They are mentioned under group Keeta and include various insects like Makshika, Kanabha, Vrischika etc. The categorization is done on the basis of dosha predominance into Vatika, Paithika, Kaphaja and Sanniptahika Keeta. The Ayurvedic texts also highlight the signs, symptoms and treatment of each of these insects’ bite.
Symptoms of Venom Allergy
The symptoms of insect sting bite allergy are as follows:
- Swelling (around insect bite and sometimes spread to other parts)
- Anaphylaxis: It is a serious condition that leads to difficulty in breathing and the body can also go into shock and there are a range of symptoms such as dizziness, unconsciousness, inflammation of tongue, pain during swallowing, nausea, vomiting, and low blood pressure.
Ayurveda explains the symptoms of paithika keeta as redness, burning sensation and blackish red discoloration at the site of bite.
- Insects like fire ants, yellow jackets, hornets, and wasps can sting repeatedly. Honeybees have barbed stingers and they leave these stingers in the victim’s skin. It is best advised to remove these stingers by a scraping action instead of pulling them to avoid releasing more venom into the skin.
- Fire ant sting produces itching, hive or lump at the site which becomes better within 30-60 minutes. Then a small blister appears within 4 hours and it becomes a pus-filled cavity within 8 to 24 hours. When these lesions heal they may leave a scar behind.
- It is important to prevent secondary bacterial infection and therefore it is advised to clean the surface with soap and water and do not puncture the blister.
Also Read:- Insect Sting Allergy Treatment
Diagnosis of Venom Allergy
Diagnosis can be done by taking detailed medical history including type of exposure, previous exposure etc. Tests like skin-prick test, intradermal skin test or blood test can be performed.
Ayurveda empowers people not only regarding life’s higher purposes but also provides profound knowledge on natural healing methods. At Dr. Gupta’s IAFA, we are enlightening the world by sharing health secrets mentioned in ancient ayurvedic texts and enable people to have improved health outcomes and improved quality of life
– Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)
Ayurvedic Allergy Specialist
CEO & Founder of IAFAⓇ
Diet Management for Venom Allergy
- Puffed rice
- Bitter vegetables like bitter gourd
- Green gram
- Include more fruits and vegetables
- Water boiled with Khadirasara (Acacia catechu)
- Sufficient quantity water intake
- Spicy and sour food
- Non vegetarian diet
- Day sleep
- Excess exposure to heat and sunlight
- Heavy and fatty meal
Yoga and Pranayama in Allergy
Although yoga and pranayama does not have a direct impact on the healing of venom allergy, Yogic kriyas help to maintain the overall health and well-being and reduces the severity of allergic reactions. Moreover, it is important to elevate the part (if possible) with insect bite so that there is no accumulation of fluid and the swelling and associated symptoms can become better. Yoga and pranayama also helps to promote calmness and alleviates anxiety that also boosts the healing process and helps the individual to get rid of these annoying symptoms with a positive frame of mind and assist in natural treatment of venom allergy.
Ayurvedic Treatment of Venom Allergy
In Ayurveda, the treatment of venom allergy is advised by integrating oral medications, external applications, and detoxification procedures. This alternative and natural treatment for venom allergy prioritizes pain management, removal of toxins and prevention of complications.
The following oral medications are effective in the treatment of venom allergy but should be taken under the guidance of Ayurvedic practitioner:
- Kaishor Guggul
- Neelitulasyadi Kashaya
- Vilwadi Gulika
- Dasanga Gulika
- Lodhrasevyadi Kashaya
- Dushivisari Gulika
- Avipattikar Churna
External herbal remedies for venom allergies include:
- Triphala churna
- Nimbadi Churna
- Vilwadi Gulika
- Aragwadhadi Kwatham
- Guluchyadi Kwatham
- Kashaya Dhara (Pouring medicated liquid on affected area)
- Virechana (Purgation)
- Raktamokshana (Bloodletting)
The following herbs are used in Ayurveda against insect bites
- Lakshmana (Biophytum Sensitivum)
- Haridra (Curcuma longa)
- Lakshmana or Vipareeta lajjalu (Biophytum sensitivum)
Ayurveda – One of the oldest healing methods emphasizes on maintaining equilibrium between elemental energies and focuses on balancing mental elements such as Raja and tama.
Dr. Gupta’s IAFA – One-Stop Destination for All Allergic Disorders.
- Shloka No. 2, Keetaluthadivisha Prathishedha, Ashtangahrudayam by Acharya Vagbhata, Uttarasthanam.
- Ambikadutt Shastri, Sushruta Samhita, 12th ed. Chaukhambha Publication, New Delhi, 2001. p. 64.
- Ashtang Hridya, Atrideva Gupt, Reprint. Chaukhambha Prakashan, 2009.
- Charak. Charak Samhita by Dr. Brahmanand Tripathi, Reprint. Chaukhambha Prakashan. 2009.
- Ayurveda Dipika. Commentary on Charak Samhita. Chikitsasthana. 23/152, 5th ed. New Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt. Ltd; 1992. p. 503.
- Sahil Gupta, Ayurvedic Aspects of Allergies and Fungal Infections, Edition 2021, Insect Sting Allergy Chapter No. 04, Page No. 28-33.
Article Written By: Dr. Sahil Gupta (B.A.M.S., M.H.A.)