Indigenous medicine practice of ancient Sri Lanka is known for its many special benefits with respect to Allopathic (Western) medicine. Since the knowledge of Sri Lankan indigenous medicine is mainly handed down from generation to generation and jealously guarded from other practitioners, with the decline of certain ancestries, their secret ingredients have sometimes failed to be passed on. One main component of Ayurvedic practices that lack such information is the usage of indigenous medical containers and utensils. The design of medicinal containers and utensils needs a special focus, since it deals with many aspects with regard to the human, but the product psychology of the user is seldom discussed. While indigenous medical practitioners of Sri Lanka appear to have focused on the medicine and the purpose, they have always attracted a large group of patients, irrespective of the utensils used. This research sought to understand the thinking and rational behind the designing and choosing of the utensils in Sri Lankan Indigenous Medicine and analyzed the product psychology and usability aspects in them. The research was conducted in both quantitative and qualitative methods. Indigenous products displayed at National Museums in Sri Lanka and products that are currently used in three selected villages that practice medicine based on knowledge systems that have been passed down through generations were analyzed in terms of human factors. Several practitioners, patients, and opponents were interviewed and data was analyzed in terms of their perspectives and experience on the usability of the utensils.
Medical Utensils, Product Psychology, Product Usability, Sri Lankan Indigenous Medicine
Design in Society
Paper Presentation in a Themed Session
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