Midwinter Colds and Cures
As the weather gets colder (much colder!) and snow begins to accumulate on the city streets, we are all hoping to evade what seems to be inevitable: falling ill.
On January 12th, we celebrate Pharmacist's Day and all the medical profession for educating us and keeping us healthy. With the advent of modern medicine, we no longer die from common ailments like influenza and colds. With treatments ranging from preventative measures to drug regimens and simple medicines, civilization has been able to escape--or at least allay--the destruction brought upon by sickness.
Even devastating diseases, like tuberculosis, have become treatable and manageable in the recent past. Before antibiotics were developed in the mid 20th century, tuberculosis was one of the biggest killers and earned itself a place of cultural importance in the romantic movement of the late 1800's. Women wasting away with consumption--another name for the disease--were considered to be dying noble and even romantic deaths. What was once a prevalent and horribly contagious sickness can now be diagnosed and treated, saving thousands of lives worldwide.
This winter, don't forget your flu shot; it's been hundreds of years in the making!
(Preventative measures to stop the transmission of TB illustrated in this French poster. Read more about early treatment methods and the effects of tuberculosis in WW1 from Kansas University Medical Center.)
(The conditions of trench warfare in WW1--cold, damp, crowded quarters--led to massive outbreaks of TB in the armies. The impact of the disease was so great, there were national days of remembrance and special fundraisers set up to help those infected. The Rockefeller Foundation played a large part in controlling TB in WW1. Read more about their contributions here.)
(Basic hygiene and sanitation were the best preventative measures for keeping fragile babies healthy.)
(This is an advertisement for throat lozenges to prevent and combat the common cold and flu.)