Itching and suffering
from reactions to poison ivy? How do you cure the rash?
Poison ivy, oak and sumac sufferers are always searching for a
cure to the painful itching, oozing and blistering rash, but it is
not a disease and therefore cannot be "cured". However, rest easy
knowing there are things you can do to relieve the symptoms, reduce
exposure and potentially prevent a rash from happening.
Relieve the symptoms
The best way to get rid of poison ivy is to take care of two
- First, you will want to remove the rash-causing oil, urushiol.
Special washes like Tecnu Original Outdoor Skin
Cleanser and Tecnu Extreme Poison Ivy Scrub
can remove this oil from the skin. Basic soap and water may
sometimes move the oil around instead of removing it.
- Second, you want to relieve the symptoms and help dry the
oozing blisters. Products like Calagel Anti-itch Gel and
Rash Relief Spray can alleviate the itch and pain
while drying up the rash. It is important to note that if the
blisters break, they do not contain urushiol and will not cause the
rash to spread.
Knowing what poison
ivy, oak and sumac looks like
can help you identify the plants so you can avoid them. This
can be difficult when the plants change colors throughout the
seasons or if they are leafless, dead vines. Urushiol exists in all
parts of the plants whether they are dead or alive so even vines
can cause a rash.
Urushiol can also
stay on surfaces of tools, clothing, shoes and equipment causing a
rash through secondary contamination. Exposure to a miniscule
amount of the oil can cause a full-blown reaction, even years
Washing off these items with Tecnu Original
Outdoor Skin cleanser after using them can help remove the oil so
you won't encounter it later.
Dogs, cats and other pets can also come in contact with the
oil. It is unlikely to bother them, but they can transfer it to you
when you touch them. This is common with people who hike with their
dogs or have pets who can enjoy outdoor areas where the poison ivy,
oak and sumac grow. Tecnu Original Outdoor Skin Cleanser can also
be used to
remove the oil from their fur.
Prevent a Rash
So how does one prevent dealing with another rash in the future?
Washing with a cleanser such as Tecnu Original Outdoor Skin
Cleanser or Tecnu Extreme Poison Ivy
Scrub after potential exposure to the plants can
remove the rash-causing oil from the skin, hopefully before a
reaction starts. We recommend using these products in the first 2-8
hours after exposure. It is important to note everyone's reaction
time is different so you could need to wash off the plant oil
sooner or have a longer timeframe you can wait before your body
starts to react to the oil. It is a good idea to carry a cleanser
with you while adventuring or working outdoors.