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Thursday, September 13, 2012
An Ancient Malay Therapy: Tuam (Poultice)
The picture shows a small tuam package. Don't be fooled by its small size: This is the "chili padi"; small but extremely HOT!
Poultice or ‘tuam’ means putting hot dressing on sore or
inflamed part of body. Items normally used are: stones, sands, firebox, hot
towels etc. The practice of poultice is also observed in Ayurvedic, Thai and
Traditional Chinese Medicine just to name some.
Malay mothers after giving birth will be given poultice
treatment by sitting on a hot rock or specific firebox burning spices. This
type of poultice or ‘tuam’ is called ‘ukup’ or “body steaming”.
Weak body or bruised parts can also be poultice with wrapping
warm ash mixed with amber with cloth. This wrapping is rubbed against the
Certain type of skin illness can be poultice with a heated mixture
of kaffir lime and lime. This warm lime mixture then applied to the itching
body part while recite the below prayer:
Other type of poultice is the well known “tuam pasir” or the
poultice with heated sand. And many more other types of ‘tuam’ techniques out
there, some technique even absorbed into today’s spa treatments.