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The Rest Cure

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by

Bea Cohen

on 10 October 2013

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Transcript of The Rest Cure

The Rest Cure
"...it is my habit to ask the patient to remain in bed from six weeks to two months...in some cases four to five weeks, I do not permit the patient to sit up or sew or write or read." (Mitchell)
"after a fortnight i permit the patient to be read to--one to three hours a day--"
"I am daily amazed to see how kindly nervous and anemic women take to this absolute rest...how little they complain of its monotony." (Mitchell)
"From a restless life of irregular hours, and probably endless drugging, from hurtful sympathy and over-zealous care..." (Mitchell)
"If the physician has the force of character required to secure the confidence and respect of his patients he has also much more in his power, and should have the tact to seize the proper occasions to direct the thoughts of his patients to the lapse from duties to others, and to the selfishness which a life of invalidism is apt to bring about." (Mitchell)
"only action allowed is that needed to clean the teeth."
"I have not permitted the patient to turn over without aid." (Mitchell)
"...[to] quiet, to order and control, to the system and care of a thorough nurse, to an absence of drugs, and to simple diet." (Mitchell)
"...the masseuse and the nurse do not talk of the patient's ills...let him by degrees teach the sick person how very essential it is to speak of her aches and pains to no one but himself." (Mitchell)
"The sense of comfort which is apt to come about the fifth or sixth day--the feeling of ease, and the ready capacity to digest food...growing hope of final cure, fed as it is by present relief..." (Mitchell)
"...a sense of relief...disappearance of many of the nervous symptoms..." (Mitchell)
"I arrange to have the bowels and water passed while lying down...the patient is lifted on to a lounge at bedtime and sponged, and then lifted back again into the newly-made bed." (Mitchell)
Works Cited
Image of someone recieving treatment with the rest cure. Digital image. Medical Soc. Files. Wordpress, n.d. Web. <http://medicalsoc.files.wordpress.com/2011/02/the-patient-should-be-kept-happy-by-cheerful-conversation-or1.jpg>.
Rest Cure recipient. Digital image. American Literature. PBWorks.com, n.d. Web. <http://americanliterature.pbworks.com/f/massage%202.jpg>.


Man Receiving treatment from nurses. Digital image. McMaster. N.p., n.d. Web. <http://pw20c.mcmaster.ca/files/imagecache/generalresize/files/pw20c_images/00000108.jpg>.

Mitchell, Silas W., Dr. "Silas Weir Mitchell (1829-1914) on His Rest Cure." (n.d.): n. pag. Print.
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