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1. Posted by Wonkerer (Respected Member 592 posts) 9y

Poison Ivy! It's not as bad as it could be, but I'm wondering if anyone has "treatment" suggestions, so as not to scratch all my skin away I leave for Ireland soon and would love to have this gone by then, but don't really know if I can control that, oh well . . .

2. Posted by Eleniki (Full Member 125 posts) 9y

The following is a quote from an alternative medicine website, Katherine:

Home remedies for poison ivy rashes and itching include calamine lotion, baking soda, or over-the-counter cortisone creams. Calamine lotion helps coot the burning itch and dries up the blisters. Baking soda can be mixed with witch hazel to form a paste and then applied to the rash. Some people find that Tecnu cleanser helps relieve the rash even after it breaks out. And crushed plantain leaves--plantain is a common weed found in lawns--are said to relieve the irritation of poison ivy and to stop the itching. Antihistamines such as Benadryl can bring some relief. Whatever you do, it will take at least one to two weeks for the outbreak to heal (vitamin C seems to help speed the healing).

Sometimes people who are very sensitive to poison ivy will also react to mangoes and cashews while they are suffering from the rash and so they should avoid these foods at that time. In addition, there are some people who have unexplained food allergies and react strongly to poison ivy. If this describes you, you should probably avoid mangoes and cashews at all times.

Hope it goes away :)

3. Posted by mikeyBoab (Travel Guru 5077 posts) 9y

Issues!

4. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 9y

Helen covered most of the treatments for poison ivy quite well. Zinc oxide cream can also be used to keep the rash from becoming too dry and cracking. If you use Benedryl or hydrocortisone cream/ointment to alleviate the itch, add a bit of triple antibiotic or neosporin cream/ointment when you apply the anti-itch med. Secondary infection can be a problem if the blisters are broken by scratching (bacteria from fingernails can be transferred into the open blisters). The blisters will break on their own so keep the area very clean. Making a slurry of oatmeal and warm water then slathering that on the rash can also help the itching. Taking oral antihistamines can be more effective than topical applications too. You don't want to take something such as Allegra or other prescription antihistamines because they are now designed to target specific allergens. Benedryl is an "old broad spectrum" allergy med and will work well with poison ivy.

Plaintain does work well and it looks like this: Plantago major (Common or Broadleaf Plantain)
It grows wild almost everywhere. Avoid using plantain from yards or areas that have been treated with any type of weed & feed products.

5. Posted by Wonkerer (Respected Member 592 posts) 9y

Thanks Helen and Gretchen (and Michael too, I suppose, just to be nice),
I was just overwhelmed by the amount of info of the web and some seemed to conflict with others. A pharmacist also recommended Ivy Dry Super, so I've been trying that too. I've got hydrocortisone cream and calamine lotion as well. I like the Vitamin C idea, hadn't heard of that before and it can't hurt. Will see if I can find some plantains and try that out - try them all and see what works best. Hope you're all having a good day!

6. Posted by Clarabell (Travel Guru 1696 posts) 9y

Hey Wonkerer, hope your Posion Ivy probs are sorted!

I have often read books or watched TV/films from the USA which mention Poison Ivy. But I have never really known what it is. What is it, what does it do, and what are the effects?

Do you have stinging nettles over there? Is Poison Ivy a bit like that? It sounds a lot worse.....

7. Posted by mikeyBoab (Travel Guru 5077 posts) 9y

Quoting Clarabell

Do you have stinging nettles over there? Is Poison Ivy a bit like that?

It's the same thing - poison ivy is the American term for stinging nettles.

8. Posted by Isadora (Travel Guru 13926 posts) 9y

Quoting mikeyBoab

Quoting Clarabell

Do you have stinging nettles over there? Is Poison Ivy a bit like that?

It's the same thing - poison ivy is the American term for stinging nettles.

Actually, we have both stinging nettles and poison ivy. Some people do use the terms interchangably, but they are two different plants. (We have nettles growing in several places on our property and probably some poison ivy can be found in the woods out back.)

This is how poison ivy looks and this is nettles.

Both plants cause contact dermatitis but reactions to poison ivy are usually worse than that of nettles. (I'd take nettles over ivy any day.) Exposure to ivy normally causes a constant itching and blistering of the skin. Exposure to nettles causes a burning sensation that subsides in a relatively short period of time. Some people will develop a rash though not as severe as with ivy.

9. Posted by mikeyBoab (Travel Guru 5077 posts) 9y

Well excuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuse me, Professor Isa

10. Posted by Eleniki (Full Member 125 posts) 9y

How do you do that cool thing where you write the word, like poison ivy and then it can be clicked on to bring up the relevant info, Gretchen? I've often wondered but been afraid to ask. I'd love to do it.....