Headaches in Childhood

January 28th, 2008

Headaches in childhood should always be looked upon as a matter for serious inquiry and care; for they may be excited by very many causes. Even the headaches of children are divided into various classes; thus there is the school headache, the headache which is peculiar to periods of rapid growth, the headache which is caused by bloodlessness and nervous exhaustion, and that which is peculiar to any strain. The exciting causes are generally excessive fatigue, exhaustion of mind or nerve, digestive disorder, changes in the weather, badly heated and ill-ventilated rooms, want of exercise, poverty of the blood, or disorder of the blood by various impurities developed in the system, over-work, excitement, undue exposure to heat or cold, colds in the nose and back of the throat, or decayed teeth.

Headaches caused by bloodlessness should give rise to careful investigation of the diet, and lead one as a rule to decide that plenty of blood-making food, such as meat broths, green vegetables, and iron tonics are required, while a great deal of outdoor exercise is needed. It must be remembered that not every pale-faced child is suffering from poverty of the blood, and that some who are well supplied with fat may have poor blood. If the child is really suffering in this way, the insides of the eyelids and gums are invariably of a pale yellowish colour; the colour of the lips and cheeks does not afford so good a test.

When a child complains of headache after study, or using the eyes over close work, such as writing, drawing, or sewing, it should certainly be taken to an oculist, for very often the use of glasses is imperative, owing to some defect in the eyes, which, not uncommonly, is that the sight of one eye is different to that of the other.

Children who indulge in over-eating or careless eating may be relieved either by spontaneous vomiting, or the mother should give an emetic or aperient. Headaches caused by chronic cold are, of course, only to be removed by treatment of this complaint, and the same may be said of those due to decayed teeth, or to the pressure on the nerves by over-crowding of the jaw.

Nervous headaches in the children of parents who suffer from rheumatism or gout depend much on the weather, and yield to anti-rheumatic treatment, especially warmth and warm bathing with the use of sulphur.

For headaches caused by dyspepsia, is is often desirable to peptonise the food, and to assist the stomach by small doses of camomile or calumba infusion before meals. Hysterical and imitative headaches are sometimes found in children of parents who suffer in a similar way, and in those accustomed to associate with people complaining of headache. In these cases the treatment is, of course, mainly moral; but the patient often also requires tonics, good food, gymnastics, bathing and outdoor exercise.

For the external treatment of headaches of most kinds hot foot baths, or mustard foot baths are of great service, with the application of a mustard plaster for a few minutes to the back of the neck; while to the seat of the pain menthol or chloral and camphor may be applied; and either hot or cold applications or gentle rubbing of the head, also often give immense relief.

Source: Home Notes, January 1895

Blood Purifier, Molasses and Sulphur as a

January 28th, 2008

“Take a pint of molasses to five cents’ worth of sulphur, and mix well.” A teaspoonful four times a day in the spring will do wonders towards purifying the blood.

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

Chills and Fever, Horse-radish for

January 28th, 2008

“Take fresh green horseradish leaves, bruise and mash them to the consistency of a poultice and bind on the bottom of the feet. This will tend to reduce the fever and is a reliable remedy. I have often used this with great satisfaction.”

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

Round and Pin Worms, Tansy remedy for

January 28th, 2008

“Tansy leaves may be crushed and put in whisky or dried and crushed with sugar. This is the best vermifuge I ever used.” A tea made of tansy leaves must be used carefully as it is strong and never given to pregnant women.

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

Corns, Onion a Cure for

January 28th, 2008

“Soak a small onion in vinegar four hours, then cut in two and bind on the corn at night. In the morning (if the onion has remained over the corn) the soreness will be gone and you can pick out the core. If not cured in first application repeat.”

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

Aqua Gentianæ compositæ

January 27th, 2008

Or Gentian Water compound.

College. Take of Gentian roots sliced, one pound and a half, the leaves and flowers of Centaury the less, of each four ounces, steep them eight days in twelve pounds of white Wine, then distil them in an alembick.

Culpeper. It conduces to preservation from ill air, and pestilential fevers: it opens obstructions of the liver, and helps such as they say are liver-grown; it eases pains in the stomach, helps digestion, and eases such as have pains in their bones by ill lodging abroad in the cold, it provokes appetite, and is exceeding good for the yellow jaundice, as also for prickings or stitches in the sides: it provokes the menses, and expels both birth and placenta: it is naught for pregnant women. If there be no fever, you may take a spoonful by itself; if there be, you may, if you please, mix it with some cooler medicine appropriated to the same use you would give it for.

Source: The Complete Herbal and English Physician Enlarged, Nicholas Culpeper

Goitre, Three Ingredient Remedy for

January 27th, 2008

“The following treatment is excellent, but must be continued for several months:

Extract of Belladonna 1/2 dram
Compound Ointment Iodine 1/2 dram
Vaselin 1/2 ounce

Apply this to the affected parts several times a day.”

If this treatment is kept up faithfully it is sure to help.

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter

Conserves of Violets the Italian manner

January 27th, 2008

Take the leaves of blue Violets separated from their stalks and greens, beat them very well in a stone Mortar, with twice their weight of Sugar, and reserve them for your use in a glass vessel.

The Vertue

The heat of Choller it doth mitigate, extinguisheth thirst, asswageth the belly, and helpeth the Throat of hot hurts, sharp droppings and driness, and procureth rest: It will keep one year.

Source: A Queen’s Delight: Or, The Art of Preserving, Conserving and Candying, Nathaniel Brooke

Leprosy

January 27th, 2008

Universally this evil hath much tokens and signs. In them the flesh is notably corrupt, the shape is changed, the eyen become round, the eyelids are revelled, the sight sparkleth, the nostrils are straited and revelled and shrunk. The voice is hoarse, swelling groweth in the body, and many small botches and whelks hard and round, in the legs and in the utter parts; feeling is somedeal taken away. The nails are boystous and bunchy, the fingers shrink and crook, the breath is corrupt, and oft whole men are infected with the stench thereof. The flesh and skin is fatty, insomuch that they may throw water thereon, and it is not the more wet, but the water slides off, as it were off a wet hide. Also in the body be diverse specks, now red, now black, now wan, now pale. The tokens of leprosy be most seen in the utter parts, as in the feet, legs, and face; and namely in wasting and minishing of the brawns of the body.

To heal or to hide leprosy, best is a red adder with a white womb, if the venom be away, and the tail and the head smitten off, and the body sod with leeks, if it be oft taken and eaten. And this medicine helpeth in many evils; as appeareth by the blind man, to whom his wife gave an adder with garlick instead of an eel, that it might slay him, and he ate it, and after that by much sweat, he recovered his sight again.

Source: Mediaeval Lore from Bartholomew Anglicus, Robert Steele

Night Sweats, Cold Sage for

January 27th, 2008

“Drink cold sage tea, before retiring.” This cold sage tea is only to be used when the patient has a fever and needs a cold drink. In case of this kind it would be effective.

Source: Mother’s Remedies: Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remidies from Mothers of the United States and Canada, T. J. Ritter