Posted by P. Bingham on August 29, 1998 at 22:17:54:
In response to Bleeding, written by Captain Everett on August 29, 1998 at 21:06:20
I was going to suggest the archives too, as the Captain has offered much in this regard there, as far as bloodletting is concerned.
There are some other aspects of fevers too, which would have been practiced, I mean besides the bloodletting or at least along with it. The most common everyday approach to the fever was to treat with Calomel pills or powder form along with bloodletting. I cannot say exactly what these pills were supposed to do, as they were given for a wide assortment of ailments, but I do understand that it was given in often dangerous amounts.
Also, at this time, there was a fixation on water-therapy and its use for balancing the excess body heat and cold. And so, for a fever, a wet towel, either very cold or very hot, would have been used across the forehead and on the limbs by an appropriate person (that is, probably not a doctor as they did not get too physically invloved in these things, but likely a parent or sibling, and perhaps the patients sex might have something to do with the provider as well). I can only assume that, in the case of a fever, the towel would have been cold! Also, drinking water too would have been thought helpful, either very cold water or very hot water, but again I cannot say which one becuase logic does not always apply!
I have a mention of Rules for preserving the Health of the Body dating 1835, and these included the drinking of either very hot water or very cold water before you go to bed and upon waking. This type of therapy was introduced at the turn of the century and 1835 it would have been very common. Also mentioned is sleeping with the window open at the top -even in wet or cold weather. And here, I'm not so certain this is for fresh air. I'm almost certain that it was done to onset a sudden change of temperature. As I already mentioned, hot and cold was highly recommended.
Also, sweating was considered very healthy and useful. And so, because you sweat when your fever breaks, they probably would give you something that would induce sweating. There is something that they gave patients to make them sweat but I can't recall right now what it was.
I have a recipe also, from the English Royal Cookbook by Elizabeth Craig:
Violet Drink c. 1818 As taken by Her Royal Highness, the Duchess of Kent, Mother of Queen Victoria. One teaspoon of dried violets and a half pint of boiling water. Infuse for six minutes and sweeten with honey. To cure pain and sooth the system under attacks of bronchitis, fevers and catarrhs.
Also keep in mind that the term 'fever' was often applied to quite a number of ailments, including madness. And so, if you find a recipe for one, it is good to keep that in mind.
- Cinchona (Peruvian Bark) P. Bingham 20:43:57 9/01/98 (5)
- she's hot... let's shave her head! P. Bingham 02:30:54 8/30/98 (28)
- head shaving in novels Susan H 19:37:44 8/31/98 (4)
- Little house on the Prairie P. Bingham 03:03:42 9/01/98 (3)
- I've read a couple of them - Proposal Constanza 17:29:23 9/01/98 (2)
- It's a wonder they ever got married! P. Bingham 20:57:46 9/01/98 (1)
- There's something terribly surreal about that, Patricia NFM SuzanneR 00:51:41 9/02/98 (0)
- Fevers: Shaved Heads, etc. SuzanneR 14:14:21 8/30/98 (22)
- Mal Air Ea Ken 07:40:06 8/31/98 (0)
- The head P. Bingham 15:42:13 8/30/98 (20)
- Shaved heads and the Humors: I found a quote SuzanneR 01:19:34 9/02/98 (1)
- very good detective work! (nfm) P. Bingham 03:28:39 9/02/98 (0)
- One more question (and thanks for the info about Aubrey series) SuzanneR 18:23:30 8/31/98 (11)
- Vinegar Caroline 16:59:05 9/01/98 (10)
- Vinegar & Jack & Jill Patricia Bingham 23:58:21 9/04/98 (2)
- Proof Ken 15:11:42 9/02/98 (0)
- Thank you, Caroline. Those archived posts were fun to read NFM SuzanneR 01:28:43 9/02/98 (0)
- burning vinegar P. Bingham 18:34:16 9/01/98 (4)
- one for sure and a guess Constanza 17:01:26 8/31/98 (1)
- Egad--that's it!! SuzanneR 18:32:30 8/31/98 (0)
- Heads Up Ken 07:47:38 8/31/98 (3)
- Thanks so much, everyone (especially Patricia!) NFM SuzanneR 22:58:50 8/29/98 (0)
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