In the 1800s most working people could not afford the expense of a doctor and so they relied on home remedies. Newspapers and shops advertised products that claimed to be ‘miracle’ solutions to various medical problems. These claims were generally false and the products were popularly referred to as ‘quack’ medicine. By the following century most families still relied on home remedies for minor ailments at least.
Jean Wilson from Wishaw recalls some of her remedies from the 1920s:
For bronchitis, brown paper soaked in eucalyptus oil and put under the vest. We gargled with vinegar for a sore throat and for a gum boil you heated coarse salt, put it in a sock and held it against the swelling.