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HOT FOMENTATION
Return to Hydrotherapy

This is a powerful, yet inexpensive tool useful in the treatment of acute conditions such as chest colds and coughs. It seems to aid not only in relieving symptoms but also in decreasing the length of the illness. The reaction is mediated through the nervous system, which in turn directly effects associated blood, lymph, sebaceous glands, sweat glands as well as surrounding tissue and muscle. In treating the skin, we directly influence many activities associated with healing.

THIS TREATMENT SHOULD NOT BE USED BY DIABETIC PATIENTS, IN CASES OF RECENT HEART ATTACK, AND ANY OTHER CONDITION IN WHICH THERE IS A LOSS OF SENSATION.

Materials:

2 wool blankets (polyester, if wool is unavailable, but not cotton.)

2 basins -- one for hot water, one for (ice) cold water

1 foot tub (any firm clean container that can comfortably hold the persons feet in it will do)

1 washcloth

1 pair of clean plastic gloves (opt.)

1 or more pillows

5 medium (hand or face) towels

1 flat sheet

1 clean and empty water or milk jug

 

Preparation:

In a quiet room, cover a bed with two wool blankets. Place the flat sheet on top of the blankets.

Place your two water basins filled with hot (104 - 112 degrees) and cold (with ice cubes) water, respectively, nearby. Put two towels in the hot basin and the washcloth in the cold.

Set your foot tub on a low table at the foot of the bed to that the person receiving the treatment can comfortably reach it and still be lying down. Fill an empty milk or water jug with very hot water. The hot water from the jug should be added to the foot bath as it loses heat.

Procedure:

Have the person being treated disrobe to their undergarments and lie down on the bed atop the blankets and sheet. Wrap the patient with the blankets and sheet leaving the chest free. Place the person’s feet into the basin and fill until covering the ankles. The water should be as hot as the patient can stand it. This water should be kept at the same warm temperature throughout the treatment.

Wring out one of the towels in the basin until no longer dripping and place it on the patient's chest. DO NOT BURN THE PATIENT. It is advisable to test the towel on the patient's arm prior to placing it on the chest. Wring out the second towel and place it on top of the first towel. Completely wrap the patient in the blankets. Place the cold washcloth on the patient's forehead. Put two more towels in the hot water to heat up.

Wait for 3 minutes and repeat the process.

After the 2 nd time, have the patient sit up and with the washcloth that was on the patient's forehead, submerge it into the icy water and briskly rub the patient's back and chest for 30 seconds.

Repeat this entire process two more times.

Have the person rest for a few minutes. Keep the patient warm after this treatment.

THIS TREATMENT SHOULD NOT BE USED BY DIABETIC PATIENTS, IN CASES OF RECENT HEART ATTACK, AND ANY OTHER CONDITION IN WHICH THERE IS A LOSS OF SENSATION.

Initially, this procedure may seem somewhat cumbersome. However, after seeing its effectiveness on countless occasions, it is definitely worth the effort.

 

 

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Dr. Juniper Martin
11825 SW Greenburg Road,
Suite A2
Tigard, OR 97223
503-443-2332
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