Medicated Steam Inhalation
Medicated steam is an excellent treatment for a head cold. All you need is a kettle with a spout. Fill the vessel half full of water. Add a little oil of eucalyptus or compound tincture of benzoic, or some Vick’s Vaporous or similar medication. These simple medicines help to open the windpipes and relieve the congestion. However, the steam itself is always the most important part of the treatment.
Open an umbrella and place it behind the patient’s head, as shown in the picture. Throw a sheet over the umbrella to provide a tent. Now plug in an electric hot plate, or use some other means of keeping the water hot. If the water is already hot, you will need only very low heat. Make sure the steam comes up through the spout of the kettle freely. Form a paper or cardboard tube to carry the steam up under the tent. Next, soak a small piece of gauze with the eucalyptus or other medication and lay the gauze over the top of the newspaper cone or tube.
Allow the steam to pass up the tube and under the tent for about 20 to 30 minutes. This medicated steam inhalation is very useful in treating head colds, sinus trouble, bronchitis, croup, and pneumonia. However, you must be very careful when treating a young child. Have an adult stay close by to prevent any accidents. Do not allow the patient to become chilled during this procedure or it will make his cold much worse.