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Whooping Cough

Source: Papers On Health

The cough is a spasmodic action of nerves which are
otherwise healthy enough, so that when the violent action ceases, the
child's health is much as usual. Any irritation of nerves or temper
will, however, bring on an attack, and should therefore be avoided, and
all soothing mental influences should be encouraged. Three or four
teaspoonfuls of hot water taken frequently, and given whenever an
attack comes on, will give great relief. We have ourselves seen a child
thought to be dying relieved at once by nothing more than this.
Therefore it should never be neglected as too simple.

Also the feet should be bathed once in two nights (see Bathing Feet)
in warm water (not too hot), dried and rubbed gently with olive oil. On
the night when the feet are not bathed, let the back be lathered with
warm lather (see Lather; Soap), quickly dried off, and then a
little olive oil gently rubbed on.

In ordinary cases, this will be sufficient to ward off all danger in
the disease, but in severer attacks the feet and legs may be fomented
(see Fomentation) while the child is in bed, and cold towels changed
along the spine while the fomentation remains on, so as to lower the
nerve action over the main centres. This is best done in the morning
before the patient arises. If anything like inflammation sets in in any
part of the chest, treat as recommended in Bronchitis or Lungs,
Inflammation of.

As far as possible, all causes of irritation to the patient must be
removed or avoided. In the time of whooping cough, the sunniest way of
managing the child is the best.

The other children, if any, in the house, should have the footbath and
oil, and the back wash, as recommended above. This will lessen danger
of infection, and make the attack lighter if they should take it.

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