Treat Poison Ivy Naturally

Contact with poison ivy causes allergic contact dermatitis. The oil, known as urushiol, soaks into the skin and causes a horribly itchy rash, fluid-filled blisters, and hives. The best way to avoid it is to educate yourself. Learn what the plants look like and do everything you can to avoid getting your skin in contact with them.

How can I tell if I have touched poison ivy?

Most symptoms with the oil of poison ivy called urushiol occurs within 15 days, often within 48 hours, of contact. The first time you touch it it may take over a week to develop symptoms but if you come in contact again the symptoms will occur more quickly.

The symptoms are:

  • Itchy skin at the site of contact
  • Red streaks or general redness at the site of contact
  • Small bumps or hives
  • Blisters with fluid that may leak.
  • If you develop any of the following symptoms seek medical attention immediately:
  • Swelling of the face, mouth, neck, genitals or eyelids
  • Large blisters all over that leak large amounts of fluid

 

How do I identify poison ivy?

Remember this little rhyme when in an area where poison ivy is prevalent: leaves of three, let it be! Poison ivy is found in leaflets of three, broad and spoon-shaped leaves. In the eastern United States it is seen as a low or climbing vine, while in the northern US, Canada and Great Lakes regions it is often seen as a shrub.

Protect yourself by covering your arms and hands and legs. Wash clothes without touching them with your bare hands.

How can I treat poison ivy?

  • Immediately treat the area with rubbing alcohol. This will help to prevent the spread of the rash,.
  • Treat the itch with a cold shower or cold compress.
  • Make a paste of baking soda and water apply it to the rash every two hours, three times a day. Then take a lukewarm bath with a cup of baking soda before bed.
  • You can try pouring some coffee on the rash. It may help to take down the inflammation.
  • Vinegar will definitely help to tame the itch. Just wet a cotton ball and wipe it on your arm.
  • If you can get to a sink in under ten minutes, wash the area with LOTS and lots of water, then wash with an oil-cutting soap. Any towels used should be washed in hot water with detergent
  • Apply aloe vera every two hours. Let the gel dry, then gently wash it off. It may help to take down inflammation.
  • Take an oatmeal bath.

 

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