Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Little Whimsy

  As I have mentioned several times before, one finds the most interesting things when trolling through information about bygone days. *Ahem*, I found the history of the vibrator.   
Female hysteria was a once-common medical diagnosis, made exclusively in women. (No longer recognized by modern medical authorities as a medical disorder.)  Its diagnosis and treatment were routine for many hundreds of years in Western Europe. Hysteria was widely discussed in the medical literature of the Victorian era.
 Women considered to be suffering from it exhibited a wide array of symptoms including faintness, nervousness, insomnia, fluid retention, heaviness in abdomen, muscle spasm, shortness of breath, irritability, loss of appetite for food or sex, and "a tendency to cause trouble".
Since ancient times women considered to be suffering from hysteria would sometimes undergo "pelvic massage" — manual stimulation of the genitals by the doctor until the patient experienced "hysterical paroxysm" (orgasm).
Water massages as a treatment for hysteria c. 1860.
Galen, a prominent physician from the second century, wrote that hysteria was a disease caused by sexual deprivation in particularly passionate women: hysteria was noted quite often in virgins, nuns, widows and, occasionally, married women. 
The prescription in medieval and renaissance medicine was intercourse if married, marriage if single, or vaginal massage (pelvic massage) by a midwife as a last recourse.
So, my conclusion from all of this? The next time some one questions your toys-- tell them it's just what the doctor ordered! 
Five Card Stud
2011 Passionate Plume Finalist


An Open Book said...

Great blog Gem- I never knew the doctor would've ordered such an awesome way to release- lol
Dawne P

Gem Sivad said...

Wonder how many women the doctors were compelled to treat for "hysteria" back then.

Savanna Kougar said...

Great research, Gem... I knew a bit about it. But not that detailed.

A good doctor is hard to find... ah, if the doctor had the hands of a sinner... wow, talk about the potential for pleasure and profit.

Of course, I would venture to say the above treatments are far superior to drugs like prozac.

Becca Simone said...

This is fascinating information. Can you imagine going into your doctor's office today and telling him/her you've been depressed or having panic attacks, and their solution is to bring you to orgasm? If that was the case, I'd have to look for a more attractive doctor. LOL

Gem Sivad said...

I want to know who came up with this diagnosis and cure. The research indicated that as far back as the year 2 AD "hysteria" was recognized in women and had to be "cured".

Savanna Kougar said...

Gem, great question... now, that would be an interesting erotic story... or not, depending. And,hey, why wouldn't women get hysterical if they weren't be cared for in good sexual ways?