By Unknown - June 19, 2017

Simple Home Treatments

  It is unthinkable that every slight pain or ache be reason for calling a doctor. Doing so would result in an impossible situation. It is reasonable that people use domestic remedies for relief from obviously minor symptoms. Actually such a practice is encouraged by the medical profession. But medical help must be sought when a symptom is severe, when it persists, when it returns frequently, or when there is any doubt as to its significance. Such symptoms should be considered as warning signs of an abnormality that needs professional attention.
The knowledge and practice of healthful living habits will do much in preventing disease conditions with their unpleasant symptoms. It is best to eat the apple a day that keeps the doctor away. One of the main objective of this blog is to acquaint you with the principles of healthful living practices and thus to minimize the necessity of the treatment of any kind. But illness and injuries occur regardless, and for minor ones every householder should be equipped to administer simple remedies.

Sad to say that wall cabinets in many homes are stocked with medicines for headache, acid stomach, sleeplessness, etc, and members of the family tend to use these rather indiscriminately.

Self medication is encouraged by advertisements on television, in the press and in the drugstore. People are actually filling themselves  with chemicals that actually cause damage to the body tissues.

 In contrast to medication by drugs, there are available to all, simple treatments which do not leave residuals in the body. These consists of the rational use of natural remedies such as water, light, controlled exercise, and rest. The results of these treatments depends on the natural physiological response of the body to its surroundings and to its own activity.


The use of water in treatment is called "hydrotherapy".

Among the simple drugless methods of treating disease the use of heat and cold ranks high in importance. Best or cold may be easily applied with the use of that most common substance, water, in one of its three states—liquid  vapour (steam), and solid (ice).

 When one bathes his face with cold water of takes a quick dip or plunge into cold water, after the first shock there comes a delightful feeling of invigoration, with quickened circulation and soon a glow of warmth in the skin. A concomitant result is greater energy for either muscular or brain  work with all normal body activities being stimulated. These changes that occur as a result of the brief application of cold water to the skin are spoken of as  reaction.

 In treating the sick by the use of hydrotherapy, securing a reaction is important for this depends success in stimulating the activity if the organs not working normally. The cold water may have to be applied to only one  part of the body at a time, after a hot application has first warmed the skin or while hot applications are being administered to other parts of his body; and the cold application may have to be made with energetic rubbing. In case of chilliness, hot applications sufficient enough to produce sweating must be used before a cold application so that the patient will react properly. This is most important and must not be forgotten, especially with diseases as colds, influenza, and pneumonia.

  Hot fomentations may be used in treating deep congestions or inflammations, such as lung congestion and pleurisy. When the head  is hot and throbbing, a hot foot bath together with a cold cloth to the head helps greatly. An ice bag applied to the chest over the heart, in case of  heart disease with a rapid pulse, slows down the heartbeat and increases its force. Applied to the throat and upper chest, fomentations help in relieving sore throat, tonsillitis, cough, bronchitis lung congestion, etc. When applied to the throat only, the hot cloth should be folded so as to be about 20 cm wide. To the abdomen, it is useful in stimulating the flow of digestive juices and the movement of the stomach and bowels.

Note though that when applying heat, great care must be exercised to avoid damage to a part with poor blood vessels- a point particularly true of the feet. Direct heat application to a parr acutely inflamed and swollen should be avoided- direct cold may be much better.

 Light Treatments.

 Sunbaths has a denifite place as a simple home treatment. A sunbath is best taken in the morning when the air is clear and the heat not too great. In the summer it may be taken as early as seven o'clock. In the cooler weather, it may be taken later in the forenoon. Care must be taken to prevent overheating or chilling.

 To secure the benefit of ultraviolet rays of the sun, it is essential that the sunlight fall upon the naked skin with no glass or screen intervening. The head however should preferably not be exposed. The eyes should be protected by the use of glasses or covered with cloth. The sunbath with benefit be followed by a cool shower, a cold mitten friction, or an alcohol rub.

In order to avoid sunburn, it is nessecary to start with a short exposure and to increase the time gradually on following days.

 Following a sunbath, there should be a feeling of well-being. Headache,fatigue and nausea are symptoms of overexposure. They give warning that the duration of subsequent sunbaths should be reduced.

 Note though: Sunbaths, however must not be used in cases of pulmonary tuberculosis. Since there are other conditions and certain medicines which may sensitize the body to ultraviolet light, the patient's physician should be consulted.


Massage is a system of remedial or hygenic manipulations of the body tissue with the hand or some instrument. It consists of rubbing, stroking, kneading, vibrating, or tapping. Although it is natural for a person to rub s part that may feel uncomfortable, the procedures of massage for the treatment of disease or injury are too complicated for a person to administer unless he has had proper training in an accredited institution.


Exercise is necessary for the maintenance of health. This fact becomes clearly evident when a healthy individual is made bedfast, let us say by a fractured leg. Regular  exercise has great benefits.

Rest and relaxation.

Rest alternating with activity, relaxation alternating with work, sleep alternating with wakefulness are cycles necessary for normal life and health. A correct relationship between the opposing states must be maintained. Obviously in conditions of injury or disease, this relationship becomes more important than in health, assuming therapeutic importance.

It may be said that a patient suffers from overwork, though usually this is not a correct statement. More likely he needs a review of his daily program so that wasted movements can be saved, thus permitting time for rest periods and for adequate hours of sleep.
 The "overworked" patient may not realize that most of his muscles are kept in constant state of tension. By learning how to relax unnecessary muscle tension, he may accomplish even more than before but with less fatigue. Relaxation of the muscle tension may stop such complaints as headache, nervousness, acid stomach, palpitation, and fatigue, which often result from psychological stress.

 The period of rest may be many but short and still be restful. For example; the heart necessarily works sixty minutes out of each hour and twenty-four hours a day. But it may actually rest longer than the body as a whole, for its rest between heart beats for a longer time than it works while beating. One should look for opportunity for rest periods during the day even though they might be short.
  For the person who is “overworked”, arranging to get away and sleep and loaf for several days may not be the best answer. The needed “rest” may be provided best by devoting a day to swimming or mountain climbing.

We've just talked about some simple treatments that can be given at home with simple equipments and with untrained help and even by the patient himself.

Note though that common sense should be applied in administration of these treatments. And common sense may clearly indicate that help by processionally trained people, such as physical and occupational therapists is needed. One of the most important things is to learn is when one should call a physician.

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