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Forgotten Cures: Colds

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Colds * Mustard Plaster: They would take a kind of dry mustard and mix it with water. Then they would spread it between two pieces of cloth, and cover your chest with it. It would burn something awful. Grover (Mustard Plaster Recipe) * Cod Liver Oil: To prevent you from getting a cold. Grover * Vicks Vapor Rub: Taken internally for sore throat and cough. Applied externally if "your chest sounds a little tight". Applied under the nose for sniffles. Dennis Palmer * Goose Grease & Turpentine: When I was a little girl my mother would save the grease from a goose and when my brother or I would get a chest cold she would take some of the goose grease and turpentine and heat it up and rub on our chests. Then she would heat a piece of a woolen blanket and wrap around our chests. As near as I can remember it would break up the chest cold. Diane McGee * When I had a cold my mother used to chop up onions and put some sugar on them and set them in the warming oven until there was juice. I actually liked the sweet warm onion juice and it was soothing for a sore throat. Dolly Yates * As a little girl, I remember when I had a chest cold..the first thing my grandmother would suggest would be "warm up the Camphorated Oil and then rub it around my throat and chest and cover with a warmed cloth." Later on it seemed Vicks Vapor Rub took over in place of the Camphorated Oil! Doris Goldsborough * My Mother was raised on a turpentine plantation. It seems that was the only medicine they had .It was used for cuts, burns, colds, you name what ever was ailing you and they would bring out the medicine bottle. Jinx Dopson * For chest colds, etc. mother would fry up a pan of onions which permeated the house and place the fried onions in an old pillowcase folding the excess around the onions to make a poultice for the chest or back! It sure got hot and caused one to sweat buckets but it broke any fever and thus speeded up the healing process....I think! Pat Bales * The worst was hot whiskey with lots of lemon - which, as I remember, I was never able to keep down - this wasn't tried too often!! Peggy * The "dreaded" onion plaster had many incarnations, mostly, crushed onions in lard, spread on the chest and covered with flannel. The victim was bundled up to sweat (it felt like stewing) and chest congestion usually couldn't stand up to combination. Dorothy * In Appalachia, i often heard of thick slices of onion bound to the soles of the feet for bad chest congestion too. Dorothy * To prevent colds my mother-in-law used to keep a pan on the old heat stove with water and Goose Greece in it and a bit of Vicks, it made the whole house smell of menthol but was nice and helped. Dorothy * I grew up in England and remember a few my mother used to use. If she roasted a goose she would save the grease, if you caught a cold or had the 'flu you got this rubbed into your chest and back. There used to be 'Herb Shops', ( we might call these 'Homeopathic Stores' now) where she could buy various herbs and herbal cures. If we were congested, she would fill a bowl with boiling water, put in 3 or 4 large poppy heads, cover our heads with a cloth and we had to breath in the steam. I realize now that this was opium I was breathing in but it was a common thing in those days; as was 'Herbal Tobacco'. This was also a 'pick-me-up'. Only adults could smoke this if they felt a bit 'run down'. Looking back this must have been a mixture of tobacco and marijuana. It certainly seemed to do the job! Chas * For colds and congestion in the chest take a meduim onion and put a little over a cup of water and sugar cook until the onion until soft and drink as hot as you can stand it and go to bed you may get sick but that is the congestion coming out and you will feel a hundred percent better in the morning. Rose L. * I swear by simple Vitamin C. Start taking 2000 mg a day at the very first tinge of a cold, along with Echinacea and Zinc. I rarely have a cold that becomes full-blown or lasts longer than a couple of days. And taking regular Ibuprofen or Acetominaphen for a sore throat works a lot better than the stuff you spray down your throat. Tiffany * I remember as a child (I am now 67) my mother using something call 'Turpicol' for colds, coughing (the 'croup') and temperature. She would soak a soft cloth with it, get the clothwarm and then tie the cloth around my neck. By morning I was feeling better. 'Turpicol' was obtained from our doctor who kept a big bottle of it on his shelf and would dispense it in small bottles. I'm not sure of the spelling and cannot find the word anywhere. I also understand it is illegal now because of one of the contents. I would sure like to find out about it. Paul Meyer * I remember the following remedy from my childhood. As a variation on the mustard plaster my mother used to empty a tin of mustard powder (about a quarter pound) into a hot bath and make her victim/patient lie there until the water was tepid. If making you sweat helps get rid of a cold then that surely worked. There was a downside, if you didn't mix all of the powder into the water your back got burnt from the residue on the bottom of the bath. Tony Hessler * Regarding colds, sniffles, "flu", etc., etc., and almost any viral infection: I make up a decoction of equal parts ( cup or two ) of onion, garlic, horseradish into a blender with enough organice vinegar to cover them. Blend into a mash, pour into glass bottles, let sit in a cool dark place for a couple of weeks. Strain through cheesecloth and bottle. Take a dropperfull or two as needed. I put it into a cup of vegetable juice like V8, heat it and sip on it before bedtime and then two dropperfulls two to three times a day. Two days, and whatever is bugging you is gone. This came from a fellow named "Doc" Shillington. I believe he has a website. Bob Wood
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Forgotten Cures: Colds