The informant is marked EL. I am CS. She shared with me a few forms of folk medicine practices she has learned over the years.
CS: “So are there any other remedies or folk medicine you can tell me about?”
EL: “Hmm yeah let me think. Oh! Ok…there is another super weird one, but I actually kind of think it works.”
CS: “Perfect, can you describe it for me?”
EL: “Yeah so it’s a remedy for when you have a fever. You basically take a pair of socks and put them under cold water, and put your feet in hot water. Then, when you go to bed, you put the wet socks on your feet and I guess it like increases circulation and blood flow? Sounds kind of weird, but the next day it supposedly relieves like congestion and your fever.”
CS: “And you’ve done this before?”
EL: “Yeah my mom always made me do it when I was younger. I got fevers all of the time.”
CS: “Did you notice any results from it?”
EL: “Honestly, yeah. I always felt better the next day. Weird how those things can sometimes really work.”
Met for coffee to record her different encounters with folk medicine and remedies.
EL is a first year student at The University of Southern California. She was raised in Dallas, Texas.
I find this remedy interesting because I have never heard of it before, and the method seems bizarre, yet I understand the purpose behind it. I personally remember whenever I was sick with a fever doctors would tell me to cool myself off instead of warm myself up. I never used to understand the logic because I believed if I was struck with a fever and my body wanted heat, then it makes sense to give it heat. However, warming yourself up does prolong a fever’s duration, and essentially is just another catalyst to making you sicker. So off of this medical point, this method does seem to be logical and probably soothing. Compared to many over the counter drugs and doctor’s diagnoses, I enjoy learning of other methods that could similarly take care of the problem without all of the extra legwork.