The rest cure
, or bed rest cure
, was a 19th century treatment for many mental disorders
, particularly hysteria
. The most important feature was that the patient must undergo complete bed rest
for 4 weeks to 2 months. In addition to bed rest, patients were secluded from all family contact in order to reduce dependence on others. The only human that bed rest patients were allowed to see was the nurse who massaged, bathed, and clothed them. Patients were also not allowed to use their hands at all. In some extreme cases electrotherapy
was prescribed. The food the patient was served usually consisted of fatty dairy products in order to revitalize the body with new energy.