In simple terms, it is a medicated ENEMA. In Basti, the medicated ghee or herbal oils are administered into the ANUS with the help of an instrument, specially designed for this process. Basti is considered as the mother of all treatments. It is done in Pakwashaya i.e. lower gastrointestinal tract. It is the main site of Vata Dosha.
Furthermore, Enemas are also given as treatment for Constipation if nothing works for the patient. It is not a localized or symptomatic treatment. Basti also feeds the colonic flora.
Out of the five essential therapies which form the prime actions of the Panchakarmas or the techniques of thorough detoxification and overhauling the body, Basti Karma or the Enema therapy is regarded as the most important in Ayurveda healing.
This is because this specific therapy aids greatly in balancing and combating the vitiated Vata dosha or the Air body humor, which alone is responsible for 80 types of diseases and disorders.