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Thus, instead of removing the underlying causes, every symptom is promptly suppressed. Drug poisons are added to the waste and morbid matter which are already clogging the channels of life. And, of course, under such unnatural treatment, in many instances things go from bad to worse. Flushes, headaches, rheumatic and neuralgic pains, melancholia, irritability, mental aberration, partial paralysis and a multitude of other symptoms appear and gradually increase in severity.
When the family physician has arrived at the end of his wits, the surgeon has his innings, and leaves the patient in a still worse condition of chronic suffering.
These experiences are so common that the manifold troubles of the climacteric are regarded as unavoidable and as a matter of course. Here, as in so many other instances, people fail to see that it is the treatment which prevents the cure. If the efficiency of common sense, natural treatment were more widely known and recognized, how much unnecessary suffering could be avoided.
The Treatment of Acute Diseases by Natural Methods
In the preceding chapters we have described the results of the wrong, that is, suppressive treatment of acute diseases. We shall now proceed to describe the simple and uniform methods of natural treatment.
If the uniformity of acute diseases be a fact in Nature, then it follows that it must be possible to treat all acute diseases by uniform methods.
That it is possible to treat all acute diseases most successfully by natural methods, which anybody possessed of ordinary intelligence can apply, has been demonstrated for more than seventy years by the Nature Cure practitioners in Germany, and by myself during the last ten years in an extensive practice.
One of the many advantages of natural treatment is that it may be applied right from the beginning, as soon as the first symptoms of acute febrile conditions manifest themselves. It is not necessary to wait for a correct diagnosis of the case.
The regular physician, with his specific treatment for the multitude of specific diseases which he recognizes, often has to wait several days or even weeks before the real nature of the disease becomes clear to him, before he is able to diagnose the case or even to make a good guess. The conscientious medical practitioner has to postpone actual treatment until the symptoms are well defined. Meanwhile he applies expectant treatment as it is called in medical parlance, that is, he gives a purgative or a placebo, something or other to placate, or to make the patient and his friends believe that something is being done.
But during this period of indecision and inaction very often the best opportunity for aiding Nature in her healing efforts is lost, and the inflammatory processes may reach such virulence that it becomes very difficult or even impossible to keep them within constructive limits. The bonfire that was to burn up the rubbish on the premises may, if not watched and tended, assume such proportions that it damages or destroys the house.
It must also be borne in mind that very frequently acute diseases do not present the well-defined sets of symptoms which fit into the accepted medical conception of certain specific ailments. On the contrary, in many instances the symptoms suggest a combination of different forms of acute diseases.
If the character of the disease is ill-defined and complicated, how, then, is the physician of the "Old School" to select the proper specific remedy, Under such circumstances, the diagnosis of the case as well as the medical treatment will at best be largely guesswork.
Compare with this unreliable and unsatisfactory treatment the simple and scientific, exact and efficient natural methods. The natural remedies can be applied from the first, at the slightest manifestation of inflammatory and febrile symptoms. No matter what the specific nature or trend of the inflammatory process, whether it be a simple cold, or whether it take the form of measles, scarlet fever, diphtheria, smallpox, appendicitis, etc.--it makes absolutely no difference in the mode of treatment. In many instances the natural treatment will have broken the virulence of the attack or brought about a cure before the regular physician gets good and ready to apply his specific treatment.
In the following I shall describe briefly these natural methods for the treatment of acute diseases which insure the largest possible percentage of recoveries and at the same time do not in any way tax the system, cause undesirable aftereffects or lead to the different forms of chronic invalidism.
The Natural Remedies
The most important ones of these natural remedies can be had free of cost in any home. They are: air, fasting or eliminative diets, water, and the right mental attitude.
I am fully convinced that these remedies offered freely by Mother Nature are sufficient, if rightly applied, to cure any acute disease arising within the organism. If circumstances permit, however, we may advantageously add corrective manipulation of the spine, massage, magnetic treatment, advanced regenerative modalities (like the Magnatherm) and homeopathic, herbal and specific nutritional supplementation.
The Fresh-Air Treatment
A plentiful supply of pure fresh air is of vital importance at any time. We can live without food for several weeks and without water for several days, but we cannot live without air for more than a few minutes. Just as a fire in the furnace cannot be kept up without a good draft which supplies the necessary amount of oxygen to the flame, so the fires of life in the body cannot be maintained without an abundance of oxygen in the air we breathe.
This is of vital importance at all times, but especially so in acute disease, because here, as we have learned, all the vital processes are intensified. The system is working under high pressure. Large quantities of waste and morbid materials, the products of inflam-mation, have to be oxidized, that is, burned up and eliminated from the system.
In this respect the Nature Cure people have brought about one of the greatest reforms in medical treatment: the admission of plenty of fresh air to the sickroom.
But, strange to say, the importance of this most essential natural remedy is as yet not universally recognized by the representatives of the regular school of medicine. Time and again I have been called to sickrooms where by order of the doctor every window was closed and the room filled with pestilential odors, the poisonous exhalations of the diseased organism added to the stale air of the unventilated and often overheated apartment. And this air starvation had been enforced by graduates of our best medical schools and colleges. This unnatural and inexcusable crime against the sick is committed even at this late day in our great hospitals under the direct supervision of physicians who are foremost in their profession.
It is not the cold draft that is to be feared in the sickroom. Cool air is most agreeable and beneficial to the body burning in fever heat. What is to be feared is the reinhalation and reabsorption of poisonous emanations from the lungs and skin of the diseased body.
Furthermore, the ventilation of a room can be so regulated as to provide a constant and plentiful supply of fresh air without expos-ing its occupants to a direct draft. Where there is only one window and one door, both may be opened and a sheet or blanket hung across the opening of the door, or the single window may be opened partly from above and partly from below, which insures the entrance of fresh, cold air at the bottom and the expulsion of the heated and vitiated air at the top. The patient may be protected by a screen, or a board may be placed across the lower part of the window in such manner that a direct current of air upon the patient is prevented.
In very cold weather, or if conditions are not favorable to constant ventilation of the sickroom, the doors and windows may be opened wide for several minutes every few hours, while the patient's body and head are well protected. There is absolutely no danger of taking cold if these precautions are taken. Under right conditions of room temperature, frequent exposure of the patient's nude body to air and the sunlight will be found most beneficial and will often induce sleep when other means fail.
I would strongly warn against keeping the patient too warm. This is especially dangerous in the case of young children, who cannot use their own judgment or make their wishes known. I have frequently found children in high fever smothered in heavy blankets under the mistaken impression on the part of the attendants that they had to be kept warm and protected against possible draft. In many instances the air under the covers was actually steaming hot. This surely does not tend to reduce the burning fever heat in the body of the patient.
"Natural Diet" in Acute Diseases
From the appearance of the first suspicious symptoms until the fever has abated and there is a hearty, natural hunger, feeding should be reduced to a minimum or better still, entirely suspended.
In cases of extreme weakness, and where the acute and subacute processes are long drawn out and the patient has become greatly emaciated, it is advisable to give such easily digestible foods as white of egg, milk, buttermilk and whole grain bread with butter in combination with raw and stewed fruits and with vegetable salads prepared with lemon juice and olive oil.
The quantity of drinking water should be regulated by the desire of the patient, but he should be warned not to take any more than is necessary to satisfy his thirst. Large amounts of water taken into the system dilute the blood and the other fluids and secretions of the organism to an excessive degree, and this tends to increase the general weakness and lower the patient's resistance to the disease forces.
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