Thursday, 11 October 2012

1 January 1898 - Answers to Correspondents - Medical Advice

KINDERGARTEN:- The "round lump" in your neck is undoubtedly a swollen gland, but it is necessary to discover the cause of it before considering what is the right treatment. Inflamed glands in the neck may be secondary to bad teeth, sore gums, sore places inside the mouth, inflamed or enlarged tonsils, sore throat of various kinds, sores on the face or head, and, lastly, to tuberculosis. It is only in this last case that it is commonly necessary to operate, and it is not always necessary even in this case. Bad teeth, sore gums and enlarged tonsils are the commonest causes of swollen glands. Have you any one of these? If so you should treat the primary condition and the gland will subside. If you have been told by a competent surgeons that the gland must be cut out by all means consent to have it done at once. It will leave a small and insignificant scar, whereas if left to nature the gland may break down and discharge its contents, in which case a ragged very unsightly scar will be left.

QUEEN RUVANI:- You seem to be very much more annoyed at such a trifling ailment as blushing than there is any call for. At your age it is natural for all girls to blush. A great many girls of fourteen blush whenever they are spoken to, but they outgrow it in a few years and you will do likewise. It is nothing to worry yourself about. Not only do we allow very young girls to write to us, but we encourage them to do so if we can help them in any way.

STAMMERING:- (an answer to 'ANXIOUS ONE", 'A SICKLE" and others) - It is impossible for anyone to say what is the primary cause of stammering. We cannot even say for certain whether it is an affection of the voice box, or the lips or of the brain. Sometimes we can point to some obvious unhealthy condition of the vocal organs as the cause of stammering, for the symptom goes when the local condition has been cured. but in the vast majority of cases, no morbid condition is anywhere to be discovered. IN such cases what is the cause of stammering? WE do not know for certain, but in all probability it is due to a condition of the mind. Habit has a lot to say in the production of this exceedingly tiresome defect. The habit of speaking rapidly without thought,and of clipping words is a very important cause of this condition. The cure of stammering is often a most difficult affair, but occasionally a very trifling matter. If there is any obvious defect anywhere in the vocal organs that must be seen to first and probably the stammering will cease. But how are we to proceed when no local cause can be discovered? Always speak slowly and carefully and never slur or clip your syllables. AS a rule you will find that you only stammer over one or two sounds. These differ in almost every case. The commonest letters to stammer over are P, D, R, I, M, N and K. Every person who stammers must find out what letters she has difficulty with. Then she must educate herself. Reading aloud to one's self is the best way to do this. But read carefully, distinctly and attentively, and work till you have mastered the letters that gave you trouble.

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