–The skin is one of the principal organs of the body. As well as affording a covering, it contains of an oily, sebaceous material which keeps it soft and pliable. If follows that it is a matter of great importance to keep the skin healthy. Exercise, friction, cleanliness, and wholesome feeding are all necessary for this. The morning cold bath, followed by a brisk rubbing with a rough towel, is an excellent measure for those who are robust and have good reaction. For those who are less robust the tepid bath may be substituted, and those who are excessively chilly and sensitive to cold chills and damp may be sponged rapidly with spirits of wine. Those who have dry, harsh skins and are ill-nourished should be rubbed at night with cod-liver oil, or olive oil, and sleep in a flannel night-dress. In the morning they may be sponged with tepid water and rubbed with rough towels. For those who are chilly it is necessary to have underclothing entirely of wool or silk; no mixture of cotton and wool is enough.
The skin is often the outlet for chronic delicacies to manifest themselves upon. In these cases care must be taken not to treat them as if they were merely local affections. Many persons who suffer from eczema notice that they are much better when the disease is out than when it is in, and it must always be regarded as a misfortune when a skin disease disappears and some internal disease shows itself instead. The only proper treatment for all such affections is that which regards the constitution as a whole—in other words, homoeopathy, as taught by Hahnemann.
For the treatment of the various kinds of skin disease, see under ACNE, ERUPTIONS, ECZEMA, PSORIASIS, SHINGLES, &c. For general delicacy of the skin the following medicines will be found of great service:–
Medicines.–(Two or three times a day.)
–Skin unhealthy, slightest scratches tends to fester.
–Skin irritable and tendency to itching eruptions.