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Home :: Hysteria

Hysteria Information - Causes, Sign & Symptoms And Treatment of Hysteria - Hysteria Muse, Hysteria Mass

The term "hysteria" has been in use for over 2000 years and its definition has become broader and more diffuse over time. Hysteria is a mental and nervous disorder arising from intense anxiety. It is characterised by a lack of control over acts and emotions and by sudden conclusive seizures and emotional outbursts.

Hysteria, as classically defined, is a chronic polysymptomatic illness chiefly affecting women. A neurotic disorder characterized by a wide variety of somatic and mental symptoms resulting from dissociation, typically beginning during adolescence or early adulthood and occurring more commonly in women than men.

Hysteria is an ancient disorder. The term is derived from the Greek word hystron, meaning uterus. The diagnosis.dates back to ancient Greek medicine, according to which a variety of symptoms was attributed to a wandering of the womb through the body. The recorded history of the diagnosis begun in ancient Egypt with the Kahnus Papyrus dating from about 1900 BC, which enumerates a series of morbid states attributable to displacement of the uterus. In the Middle Ages hysteria was associated with ideas of demoniacal possession, witchcraft and religious fanaticism. Later it came to be solely related to the female sex.

Osler, an eminent psychiatrist defines hysteria as "a disorder chiefly of young women, in which emotional states control the body, leading to perversion of mental, sensory, motor and secretory functions."

There are two types of hysteria :

  • Conversion disorders whereby the emotional turmoil is expressed unknowingly as a bodily symptom.
  • Dissociative states.

Causes of hysteria

The most common causes of hysteria are sexual repression, perverted habits of thought, and idleness. Heredity plays an important part in its causation. A nervous family background and faulty emotional training when young are predisposing causes. The emotional situations may be mental, strain, stress, fear, worry, depression, traumatism, masturbation, and prolonged sickness.

Hysteria is an extremely mental phenomenon which may take varying forms. In certain types the disorder may result from some situation to which ne is unable to adapt oneself such as marriage, engagement, position of responsibility, the death of relations or loss of love. Factors involving the sexual life in some way are frequently present.

Signs and symptoms of hysteria

Hysteria may be a defense mechanism to avoid painful emotions by unconsciously transferring this distress to the body. There may be a symbolic function for this, for example a rape victim may develop paralyzed legs. Symptoms may mimic a number of physical and neurological disorders which must be ruled out before a diagnosis of hysteria is made. The main symptoms include inappropriate elation or sadness, crying without cause, almost conclusive laughter, deep sighing, cramps in the limbs, mild rumblings in the belly and sense of constriction in the throat.

The physical symptoms include a weakness of the will, a craving for love and sympathy, and a tendency towards emotional instability. Hysterical trances may last for days or weeks. A patient in a trance may appear to be in a deep sleep, but the muscles are not usually relaxed.

In severe cases, additional symptoms are noticeable; these may include wild and painful cries, incomplete loss of consciousness, an enormously swollen neck, violent and tumultuous heartbeats, involuntary locomotor muscle contraction, frightening generalized convulsions, and violent movement.

Treatment and cure of hysteria

Herbal treatment designed to improve symptoms, correct imbalance and adjust immune system, and most importantly, to boost energy and strong body for better health and quality of life.The purpose of herbal treatment is not to take the place of necessary orthodox medical treatment. Combination of the both is a better choice.

Some of the home remedies for the treatment of hysteria

Hysteria treatment using honey

Honey is regarded as another effective remedy for hysteria. It is advisable to take one tablespoon of honey daily

Hysteria treatment using asafoetida

Asafoetida has also proved beneficial in the treatment of this disease. Smelling this gum prevents hysterical attacks. If taken orally, the daily dosage should be from 0.5 to 1.0 gm. An emulsion made up of 2 gm of the gum with 120 ml of water is a valuable enema in hysteria, when the patient resists taking the gum orally.

Hysteria treatment using bottle gourd

Bottle gourd is useful as an external application in hysteria. Macerated fresh pulp of this vegetable should be applied over the head of the patient in the treatment of this disease.

Hysteria treatment using lettuce

Lettuce is considered valuable in this disease. A cup of fresh juice of lettuce, mixed with a teaspoon of Indian gooseberry (amla) juice, should be given every day in the morning for a month, as a medicine in the treatment of hysteria.

Hysteria treatment using rauwolfia

The herb rauwolfia is very useful for hysteria. One gram of the powdered root should be administered with one cup of milk in the morning as well as in the evening. Treatment should be continued till a complete cure has been obtained.

Special consideration or prevention

  • The patient should avoid alcohol, tea, coffee, tobacco, white sugar and white flour, and products made from them.
  • Exercise and outdoor games are also important. They take the mind away from self and induce cheerfulness.

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