shirodhara: reset your mind & nervous system


What is it?
Shiro (head) + dhara (flow). This traditional Āyurvedic treatment is a form of oil therapy in which a continuous stream of warm, medicated oil is poured over the forehead and 3rd eye. Shirodhara facilitates a deep state of relaxation and had a profound impact on the nervous system. It is an incredibly effective therapy for conditions of high vata and pitta, especially conditions that manifests in the mind and nervous system: like busy mind, difficult focusing, anxiety, stress, and fatigue.

What does a session look like?
Ayurvedic Pulse diagnosis may be taken at the start of a session to determine doshic imbalance. Our shirodhara sessions typically begin with Marma Therapy for the head, followed by the oil pour.

Clients often experience a meditative state during shirodhara, or experience occupying a liminal space between waking and sleep like Yoga Nidra. Shirodhara re-establishes the balance and functional integrity between the various aspects of the mind. You will often feel extremely relaxed after a session, and I suggest clients give themselves some time to reground after an appointment before they need to be at their next obligation.

How should it be used?
This treatment is indicated in cases of high vata, anxiety, headache, hypertension, insomnia, depression, stress, and much more. Shirodhara is most effective when done in a series of treatments. Sessions can be done up to three times in a week for acute presentations, once a week, once a month, or less frequently for maintenance.

How to prepare for a treatment?
It's important that the channels of the body are clear prior to receiving shirodhara so it's requested that you not eat 60 minutes before your appointment.

Your head will be oily after the treatment, and while a turban to wear home will be provided, you may also want to wear a top that can get slightly oil as you travel home. It's suggested to leave the oil on the head anywhere from 3 hours to overnight. 

Your mind and nervous system will be deeply renewed, so it's advisable that you avoid any unnecessary or extra stimulation for the remainder of the day. Avoid loud, busy places; stressful situations; and screen time. Plan to eat light and rest the mind as much as possible.

Why shirodhara?
With all the mental and nervous system stimulation that we're exposed to on a daily basis, it's important to have tools to assist with the clearing, steadying, and supporting of these subtle systems. Shirodhara is a practice you can receive that facilitates states typically only found in practices like meditation. These states lead to a clearer mind, calmer outlook on life, and more tranquil day to day experience.

Interested in experiencing a Shirodhara treatment? You can schedule a session online at