The American Pictorial Home Book
or Housekeeper's Encyclopedia - online book

A reference manual of household management in Victorian times.

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562                                HEALTH NOTES.
Cure for Dropsy.—Aunt Betsy, colored.—Make a tea of to­bacco stems or a weak one of tobaceo leaves, and bathe the limbs of the patient in it.
Decoction of Elder Bush.—One ounce of elder bark. 1 pint each of water and milk ; boil to 1-2 and strain. Dose, a spoonful 3 times a day in dropsy and cutaneous diseases.
Dropsy on the Chest.—Cut small 1-2 pound of milk weed (dried), pour on it 2 pints of scalding water and simmer to 2 cup-fuls. When cool, add a pint of the best Holland gin; pour both liquors and roots into a decanter, cork tight, and let stand 12 hours. Give a grown up person 2 tablespoonfuls every 3 hours, day and night. If too nauseating, give less. Its good effects will be seen in 4 or 5 days. It has often been tried, and seldom without happy results.
For Dropsy.—Decoction of broom, 1-2 pint; 1 oz. of cream of tartar, 2 drachms of tincture of squills; a third part 3 times a day.
Drowning Persons, How to Restore such to Life.—At all sea-bathing places, during summer, some one or more persons are certainly drowned. Dr. Hall says that unless in cold weather do not waste time in carrying the body to a house; but right on the spot, within a rod of the water's edge, remove all clothing as far down as the navel, place it on its face over a bundle of straw or other soft substance, so that the stomach shall rest upon it; press spasmodically with both hands on the back, so as to force all the water possible out of the lungs through the throat and mouth out­ward; the next instant place the body face upwards with some­thing under the small of the back, and draw out the tongue; then let another person get astride of the body, and with both hands, one on each side of the ribs, force the water out of the lungs, through the mouth, for a few seconds; then withdraw the hands as suddenly as possible, put them on the ribs again, and proceed as before, the object being to push out the water with one operation, and by the other allow the air to rush into the lungs to supply its place. Keep on working in this way until you see signs of life, even if you have to work for two or three hours. As soon as breathing is restored, convey to a bed, if possible, and wrap up the naked body from head to foot in woolen blankets, in a warm room, with plenty of ireshair. Meanwhile give a drink of some hot liquid every five minutes for the first hour or two, allowing the body the most perfect rest possi­ble all the time, and besides promote composure of mind with as much encouragement as can be conscientiously given. Life is lost