Sources: Papers On Health
The spinal cord is continuous with the back part of
the brain. It is a mass of nerve fibres, and from it branch off in
pairs, all the way down from the brain, the great nerves which move the
limbs and muscles of the body, and receive the impressions of sensation
for conveyance to the brain. It is permeated by numerous blood vessels,
which supply what is needed for the upkeep of the whole mass. When
these relax, and become overfilled with blood, we have congestion of
the spinal cord. This may often be easily remedied by cold cloths
applied over the spine, with fomentations to the feet if necessary
(see Children's Healthy Growth; Fall; Paralysis; St. Vitus' Dance).
If, on the other hand, the vessels are contracted, or the blood supply
defective, we have great languor and coldness. This usually may be
remedied by rubbing over the spine with hot olive oil. Violent heat, or
blistering, simply destroys the skin, and hinders healthy action.
Gentle heat, or gentle cooling, long continued, is the best treatment.
Especially is this true in the case of little children (see
Children's Healthy Growth). For treatment of the nervous system,
peculiar attention should always be paid to the point where all the
spinal nerves enter and issue from the brain. This is at the hollow
usually present at the base of the back of the skull, where it is
jointed on to the spinal bones. Rubbing here is most powerful, either
with acetic acid or olive oil, and hot or cold cloths should always be
well pressed into the hollow, when applied to the head or upper spine.
(See Diagram, page 234).
Failures of muscular power are caused by failure in the spinal cord. If
a child cannot walk, but only trails his legs, or if he cannot hold his
head erect, skilful rubbing with hot oil on the spine will often quite
cure the defects. Do not rub too hard. Feel for the muscles around the
spine, and gently insinuate healing influence with your fingers, so as
to reach the nerves below. Use a moderate quantity of oil, and the
effects will be marvellous.