The superior cheerfulness of persons suffering severe paroxysms of pain over that of persons suffering from nervous debility has often been remarked upon, and attributed to the enjoyment of the former of their intervals of respite. But two things are certain:— Reading aloud. They are, in fact, nothing more than a sign that the vital powers have been relieved by removing something that was oppressing them. To these the personage states that it was found least trouble always to reply the same thing, viz. Again, a thing I have often seen both in private houses and institutions. It is after it is over.
Old papered walls of years' standing, dirty carpets, uncleansed furniture, are just as ready sources of impurity to the air as if there were a dung-heap in the basement. It was that the carpets and curtains were always musty;—it was that the furniture was always dusty;—it was that the papered walls were saturated with dirt;—it was that the floors were never cleaned;—it was that the uninhabited rooms were never sunned, or cleaned, or aired;—it was that the cupboards were always reservoirs of foul air;—it was that the windows were always tight shut up at night;—it was that no window was ever systematically opened even in the day, or that the right window was not opened. No doubt, in this as in other things, nature has very definite rules for her guidance, but these rules can only be ascertained by the most careful observation at the bedside. Conciseness and decision are, above all things, necessary with the sick. You who say this, do you know that one in every seven infants in this civilized land of England perishes before it is one year old? It is rarely the loudness of the noise, the effect upon the organ of the ear itself, which appears to affect the sick. They do it from the wish to conceal.
You will say that, in cases of great thirst, the patient's craving decides that it will drink a great deal of tea, and that you cannot help it. An open window most nights in the year can never hurt any one. If you must have a carpet, the only safety is to take it up two or three times a year, instead of once. All puddings made with eggs, are distasteful to them in consequence. Yet, if you consider that the only drop of real nourishment in your patient's tea is the drop of milk, and how much almost all English patients depend upon their tea, you will see the great importance of not depriving your patient of this drop of milk. Now, just try and boil down a lb. Without going into any scientific exposition we must admit that light has quite as real and tangible effects upon the human body.
It was that the sewer air from an ill-placed sink was carefully conducted into all the rooms by sedulously opening all the doors, and closing all the passage windows. In all well-regulated hospitals this ought to be be, and generally is, attended to. This is the almost universal experience of occupied invalids. Hospital bedsteads are in many respects very much less objectionable than private ones. This want of attention is as remarkable in those who urge upon the sick to do what is quite impossible to them, as in the sick themselves who will not make the effort to do what is perfectly possible to them. In very weak patients there is often a nervous difficulty of swallowing, which is so much increased by any other call upon their strength that, unless they have their food punctually at the minute, which minute again must be arranged so as to fall in with no other minute's occupation, they can take nothing till the next respite occurs—so that an unpunctuality or delay of ten minutes may very well turn out to be one of two or three hours.
One of our highest medical authorities on Consumption and Climate has told me that the air in London is never so good as after ten o'clock at night. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. Buttermilk, a totally different thing, is often very useful, especially in fevers. Health or duty requires it. Dover 2015 republication of the edition originally published by John W.
About the Publisher Forgotten Books publishes hundreds of thousands of rare and classic books. Oh because, you say, we cannot keep it from infection—other children have measles—and it must take them—and it is safer that it should. Many people will readily admit, as a theory, the importance of these things. Of course there are many cases where this cannot be done at all—many more where only an approach to it can be made. Air can be soiled just like water. It is hardly necessary to add that there are acute cases particularly a few ophthalmic cases, and diseases where the eye is morbidly sensitive , where a subdued light is necessary. But if anything were wanting in confirmation of this fact, it would be the enormous mortality in the hospitals which contained perhaps the largest number of sick ever at one time under the same roof, viz.
Can such an illness be unaccompanied with suffering? I have met just as strong a stream of sewer air coming up the back staircase of a grand London house from the sink, as I have ever met at Scutari; and I have seen the rooms in that house all ventilated by the open doors, and the passages all unventilated by the closed windows, in order that as much of the sewer air as possible might be conducted into and retained in the bed-rooms. To patients enduring every day for years from every friend or acquaintance, either by letter or viva voce, some torment of this kind, I would suggest the same answer. But the long chronic case, who knows too well himself, and who has been told by his physician that he will never enter active life again, who feels that every month he has to give up something he could do the month before—oh! His Political Essays is readable after - how many years? If the former, then the whole question must be considered as to whether hospitals necessarily attended with results so fatal should exist at all. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. Be very sure of what your patient can bear.
Afterward, Nightingale searched Europe for innovations to help the army improve its hospital care. I have known whole houses and hospitals smell of the sink. If you propose to the patient change of air to one place one hour, and to another the next, he has, in each case, immediately constituted himself in imagination the tenant of the place, gone over the whole premises in idea, and you have tired him as much by displacing his imagination, as if you had actually carried him over both places. And it will be unhealthy just in proportion as they are deficient. Must not such a bed be always saturated, and be always the means of re-introducing into the system of the unfortunate patient who lies in it, that excrementitious matter to eliminate which from the body nature had expressly appointed the disease? That the more alone an invalid can be when taking food, the better, is unquestionable; and, even if he must be fed, the nurse should not allow him to talk, or talk to him, especially about food, while eating.