What Are the Treatments for Poison Ivy, Oak, and Sumac?
First, if you think you have been exposed to poison ivy, oak, or sumac, wash all exposed areas thoroughly. If you can do this within 10 minutes of contact, many times you may avoid an allergic reaction.
You can treat most cases of the rash yourself with calamine lotion. Cold compresses -- 15 to 30 minutes several times a day -- are useful for itching and blistering; cool showers are also effective. Antihistamines may also relieve the symptoms. If you have complications from a severe case, you will need to see a doctor. If the rash is severe or wide spread, your doctor may recommend oral prednisone or another corticosteroid.
Climate change isn't just increasing outdoor temperatures and warming up the oceans. It may also greatly increase your chances of getting a really bad case of poison ivy.
As the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases, it's boosting the growth of poison ivy plants, two recent studies show. These elevated carbon dioxide levels are creating bigger, stronger poison ivy plants that produce more urushiol, the oil that causes the allergic reaction and miserable poison ivy rash. The urushiol...
If you do come in contact with any of these poisonous plants, be sure to clean your clothing, tools, or any gear that you may have had with you. Since the plants' toxic resin, urushiol, can remain on clothing and other items for extended periods of time, you don't want to be re-exposed at a later date by touching a contaminated item.