This is an image of the hydrotherapy room that was located in the basement of the Bath House in the early to mid 1900's. Hydrotherapy involved the usage of water, of varying amounts, pressure and temperatures, for pain relief and for treating illnesses. For example, hydrotherapy was used to treat fevers, abdominal typhus, or hyperpyrexia. This therapy could be used to calm disturbed and out-of-control patients. Patients could be wrapped in sheets that were soaked with either hot or cold water, and placed in a tub of water in order to calm them down. Its use was not viewed as a means of restraint, but as a scientific treatment that could produce results via relieving “cerebral congestion” and/ or eliminating “toxic impurities” in the body. Some of the water treatments included sprays, jets, a douche table, fountain showers, full baths, and massage.
Jon Van Beckum, Archivist
early to mid 1900's
Aurora Psychiatric Hospital Archives
Please credit Aurora Health Care as the source of this material.
Hydrotherapy Room, Bath House, Milwaukee Sanitarium