Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 46.djvu/295

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bed, intervene between this point and the falls. At the first rapid the width of the stream is not more than one hundred and seventy-five yards, and from thence rapidly contracts until reaching a point above the escarpment proper, where the entire column of fleecy water is compressed within rocky banks not more than fifty yards apart. Here the effect of resistless power is extremely fine. . . . An immense volume of water precipitates itself over the rocky ledge, and under favorable conditions the roar of the cataract can be heard for twenty miles. Below the falls, the river, turning to the southeast, pursues its maddened career for twenty-five miles shut in by vertical cliffs of gneissic rock which rises in places to a height of four hundred feet. The rocky banks above and below the falls are thickly wooded with firs and spruces, among which the graceful form of the white birch appears in places." The height of the falls was found, by as accurate a measurement as could be made with cord, to be three hundred and sixteen feet. The highest elevation reached by the expedition was in the vicinity of the falls, and appeared by aneroid measurement to be somewhat in excess of fifteen hundred feet. From the point where the river leaves the plateau and plunges into the deep pool below the falls, its course for twenty-five miles is through one of the most remarkable cañons in the world. Besides the topographical and meteorological data, valuable botanical collections and ethnological collections illustrating the life and customs of mountaineer (Montagnais) Indians and Eskimos were obtained.

Hair Stimulants.—The best promotive of hair growth is general vigor, which, prevailing where hair should be as well as in the rest of the body, stimulates its development along with that of other functions. For baldness, hair lotions containing cantharides, attracting an increased blood supply to the part, may be useful when the affection is caused by mere sluggishness of the cutaneous circulation; but it fails to reach the cause of disease where the hair is lost through seborrhœa. Such cases are benefited by remedies which kill microbes, such as sulphur, mercurial applications, and antiseptic drugs. The effect of the microbe on the greasy and dry scales in seborrhœa which causes proliferation of the epithelium is such as to lead to atrophy of the hair, and if the disease is not arrested, atrophy of the whole follicle, and consequent permanent alopecia. Where the damage to nutrition is not so great, the hair is without luster and turns more or less gray, and then the hair restorers which color the hair from without and not from within are resorted to. Sulphur and acetate of lead are often ingredients of these applications, and perchloride of mercury is too frequently the leading constituent of many vaunted remedies. It is doubtless of much value as a destroyer of microbes when used in suitable cases, but when applied indiscriminately for long periods is in danger of producing injurious effects. Pilocarpine hypodermically injected, or given internally as tincture of jaborandi, is of value as a promoter of growth of hair, but is too powerful a remedy for indiscriminate use, besides inducing copious perspirations and depression of the heart. Less direct means may be found in tonics of iron, strychnine, quinine, etc.; but more powerful are cod-liver oil and change of air, generally to a bracing climate. Baldness is, however, a symptom of such diverse conditions that there is no routine treatment for it, but the cause should be carefully sought out and intelligently dealt with.

Hygiene of the Teeth.—Writing of the hygiene of the teeth, the Lancet observes that all caries of the teeth begins from without, no such thing as internal caries having ever been demonstrated; hence, if the surfaces could be kept absolutely clean there would be no decay. To the question, "When ought the cleansing of the teeth to begin?" the certain answer is, "As soon as there are teeth." "A small toothbrush, charged with some precipitated chalk flavored with an aromatic drug to make it pleasant, is perhaps the best means—not a towel, which only removes the secretion from the labial and lingual surfaces and not from between the teeth, where decay is most rife." If this habit is acquired early, the very desirable result is likely to follow of immunity, to a greater or less extent, from dental trouble. Later on something more can be done by passing a piece of waxed dental floss