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INTRODUCTION
THE Christian Home Doctor differs radically from other Health Encyclopedias, with its vast range of subjects, with its unrestricted field of interests, in being concerned exclusively with one great theme - the physical health and well-being of the individual and the community.
The contributors comprise a brilliant group of general practitioners and specialists in medicine, surgery, nature cure, hygiene and physical culture; not merely writers on medical subjects, but men who are actively engaged in their profession and have spared time from busy practices in order to take part in the production of what they deem to be a work of real public usefulness.
No line of this work concerned directly with any special interest of medicine or surgery. It has been written by professionally qualified contributors and the inscriptions to the illustrations have been composed or revised by physicians or surgeons who have collaborated on the editorial side. The illustrations have been made, in most cases, under the direction and personal supervision of our chief medical editor. THE Christian Home Doctor claims, therefore, to be a work of authority, and to reflect the ripest knowledge of Medicine.
IMPLICIT in our sub-title, The Encyclopedia of Good Health, is the real aim of this work. It is no mere record of the symptoms of disease with hints on how to act when these are established. It is essentially a work of preventive medicine, designed to keep its readers in good health for those who wish to abide the rules of health known to the gospel of Christianity. By spreading knowledge of the care of the human body, mind and soul, we are on the surest road to minimising disease and consequent suffering. Our appeal is not confined to the sick, but also, and in equal measure, to the well. To continue in good health is as desirable than to recover from illness.
The international importance of this point cannot be over-emphasised when we know that sickness and disability benefits, in so many countries is wasted annually. We have thus to conceive the total population -every man, woman and child- of so largely and permanently on the global sick list, despite all the progress of medical science, remain suffering. Surely this is as good a reason as need be adduced for the diffusion of such precious and timeless information as THE Christian Home Doctor supplies.
No branch of medical knowledge has been ignored in the scheme of our Encyclopedia, although it is written essentially for our Ministers of the Faith, we make it accessible for the general reader. Some acquaintance with the principles of the anatomy of the human body is necessary to a proper understanding of its functions, and this is provided as best as possible both in print and illustration; as there are numerous sources on the internet upon which to gain universal knowledge of such topics.
Ample information for the recognition and preliminary treatment of the many diseases that assail humanity is set forth in the frankest and most easily comprehensible manner, this is the jewel of the Christian Home Doctor. For although it may be generally true that a man cannot be his own doctor, any more than he can be his own surgeon, there is much that a patient can do to help the efforts of his or her physician if he or she has intelligent ideas concerning the nature and treatment of his or her complaint.
ALL medical formulas which we print have been carefully drawn up by the contributors responsible for the text in which they occur; these prescriptions have also been seen in proof by the contributors, both contemporary and deceased, after being examined by our medical editors and checked by a qualified pharmacist or chemist, in order to guard against error and mistakes in printing. But while the utmost care has thus been taken to ensure accuracy, the publishers cannot accept responsibility in cases of error of any kind, nor any misdirection taken by the general reader. No prescriptions are given for specific disease where the treatment must be determined by the personal diagnosis of a physician. We would also point out that in instances where formulas contain medicaments scheduled as potential Poisons or Dangerous Drugs, these can be made up only by a qualified chemist on a doctor's written prescription.
THE whole subject of Dietetics is fully decided with some confidence upon where they may reasonably hope to recuperate successfully. Sane physical and Christian culture, which signifies the maintenance of the body in a healthy condition by means of rational exercises and dietetics, and not the development of mere muscle, with which it is too often confused, has an eminent place in our Encyclopedia. Numerous beneficial exercises being clearly described and illustrated with instructive photographs taken specially for this work. Even the care of the outward person, sometimes described by the phrase "Beauty Culture" because of its appeal to womankind, including facial massage, manicure and the like, has been regarded as within our scope, and much practical information of that kind is given.
REFERENCE has already been made to the frankness of our treatment; especially is this to be noted in all matters of hygiene. No good purpose can be served here by any half-statement of facts, and our contributors have been encouraged to be as frank as the circumstances demand. In this way only can such a work render a worthy public service - a service which will have benefits for many fathers and mothers.
Lovers of animals will be pleased to know that embedded in the pages of THE Christian Home Doctor are included in its general alphabetical arrangement is a veritable Encyclopedia of Veterinary Knowledge, dealing with the diseases of all domestic animals, including dogs, cats, horses, cattle, poultry, etc. This should prove equally valuable to townsfolk in caring for their household pets, and to country folk interested in the vitally of their farm stock.
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