Scarifying and other natural remedies

Published 11:50 am Friday, March 23, 2012

A neighbor and I were recently discussing his need to do some light scarifying (making slits to remove old thatch) in his lawn to encourage new spring growth. In the course of our conversation, I asked if he was familiar with the scarifying that our ancestors did on people.
“No, what did they do, and why?” he asked.
If folks were believed to be suffering from high blood pressure, or from “bad blood” stagnating in areas of the body causing swelling and pain, a very sharp knife would be passed through a flame and used to make tiny slits in the skin over the swollen area.
Blood would be drawn from these open slits until the pressure was relieved or it was felt that a sufficient amount of “bad blood” had been removed.
“Folks had a lot of remedies in the old days that sound a little crazy to us today, didn’t they? I remember my grandma telling about them. Why don’t you include some of them in your twice-told tales?” he asked.

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