Poison lvy is a poisonous plant that grows in North America that causes rashes, swelling, blisters, and itchiness to the part that come in contact with the plant. Poison ivy belongs to the family of Anacardiceae. There are three different types of these plants, including poison ivy, poison oak, and poison sumac, with the latter considered the most toxic. Poison ivy is a plant which grows as a ground cover or large bushes. lt contains an oil, Urushiol, which causes very irritating blistering and irritation when it comes into contact with the skin. The oil occurs not just in the leaves but in many part of the plant, including the root and the stem. lt is the immune system reacting against the poison, as it seeps into the skin causing the pain we experience. The patient will very quickly undergo irritation in the skin, mixed with severe itching and inflammation in the concerned area. The skin will become discolored and a burning sensation will occur, and in a short span, blisters will form along with the rash. Suffering can persist for many weeks or maybe gone within days, and an individual case is different. lt is suggested that cooling the skin is a good antidote and also prevents further infection.
Urushiol oil is very potent. Research has displayed that a quantity of the oil, the size of a pin-head could spread to 500 people, and as it is not a water based substance, it will not evaporate. The oil can stick to items it has been in contact with for as long as, and maybe longer than, a year. This gives the possibility of re-infection, or of a person who has not been in contact with the plant being contaminated. Clothes, shoes, tools, and pets can all be party to the oil, and the very small amounts necessary to cause suffering give it greater potency. Gloves and coats, as well as boots, are among the most obvious causes of Poison lvy infection and should be disinfected thoroughly if contamination is suspected.
Rashes and other symptoms associated with these plants can occur within 6 to 48 hours from initial contact. A big misconception is that the rash can continue to get worse and seem to spread to other parts of the body. The rashes cannot be spread to other parts of the body. Whatever part of the body that came into contact with the plant is the part of the body that will have the rash. The reason why the rash can get worse as time goes by is that the parts of the body that showed signs initially were the most sensitive to the urushiol oil. The other parts of the body were more resilient to the urushiol chemical.
There are many ways that an individual can come into contact with the oil from Poison lvy. Transfer from previously contaminated clothing and other items is a way. lt is notable that direct contact with the plant is not imperative to induce a reaction. lf Poison lvy is burned, the smoke is contaminated with vaporized oil, and even coming into contact with this smog can induce an attack. Anything that has been in contact with the sap of the plant has to be avoided, therefore, and animals kept away from Poison lvy bushes.
It is essential that treatment is initiated immediately, and the best method is to wash the affected area with warm water. A sensible recommendation is to use a very powerful antimicrobial soap and to do all one can to stop the patient from scratching, as this will spread the trouble evermore. It is recommended to open the blisters, too, and to bring the area of infection exposure to the air. Keeping blisters bandaged is vital in order not to add infection. Remember that it is simply the oilthat will allow the infection to spread, so contact with it should be treated with caution. For severecases of poison ivy, you should consult a doctor, especially if it is in the face and genital areas. From an experience of a patient who had contact with poison ivy, who saw a doctor. She was prescribed a steroid cream and Methylprednisolone. The cream helped, but the Methylprednisolone made her feel really sick! The doctor suggested discontinuing it. She had to lay in bed for a few hours and drink a lot of water to help flush the medication out of her. Methylprednisolone does lower your immune system, so if you do decide to take it, be very careful.
Honestly, the best cure for poison ivy is time. Let your body fight it off by itself without any prescriptions. All you really need is water, soap and calamine lotion. The way it grows in the ecosystem gives shelter for lower growing plants and ground-dwelling animals, and the majority of these are, unlike humans are not affected by the oil. Also, Poison lvy supplies berries that are an important foodstuff for a numbei of bird species.
Poison oak blisters are not contagious. The blister on the skin is a natural allergic reaction to the urushiol oil. When the blisters break and ooze, the fluid does not contain the rash-spreading oil. ln addition, scratching the blisters will not spreacl the rash. However, be careful because scratching an open blister or any wound, for that matter, is not advised as they can easily become infected. After you have washed off the urushiol, the poison oak cannot spread. Your rash does not contain urushiol; it is simply a reaction to the urushiol that came in contact with your skin. This means you cannot catch poison oal< from another person who has a rash and has already washed, nor can you make your own case of poison oak spread by touching one area to another. Only the urushiol oil from the plant itself is poisonous and contagious.
The urushiol oil is the same oil contained in poison from oak, ivy and sumac. lt is the urushiol oil that can cause skin infections. After the skin is exposed to the oil, a bond is created within 20 to 30 minutes, ltchiness and a rash will appear on the skin after five hours and up to 5 days from initial exposure to the urushiol oil. Because of this delay of symptoms, it can be difficult to determine when and where exposure occurred. Many individuals are unknowingly infected from secondary sources such as clothing, tools, pets, or airborne vapors from burning or cutting these toxic plants. Studies have shown that the oil will remain active and contagious for up to 5 years on dead poison oak plants or on secondary sources that have been exposed to the oil.
Another thing to do after coming into contact with the oil is to take a warm shower and use shea butter or oatmeal soap. Dishwashing soap can aiso work well to clean the skin of the oil. Don’t take a hot shower because hot water opens the pores of the skin which will drive the urushiol oil deeper into the skin. lt is fundamental to thoroughly clean all clothing, tools, and pets to prevent a secondary exposure.
Fortunately, alleviation can be obtained using home remedies for poison oak. Make sure you don’t use anything that might aggravate your condition, so don’t apply on your skin home remedies that might be aggressive.
There are no home remedies for poison oak that will make the allergic reaction disappear. They may provide relief from the symptoms and to make the situation bearable. lt is completely inadvisable to scratch the blisters that appear on your skin. Scratching will only worsen the condition and will make irritation last longer. ln order to obtain fast relief, apply cold compresses and stay in front of a fan. The sensation given by the cool air will make you feel better.
Most Common Home Remedies
Oatmeal: Boil oatmeal in water and allow the mixture to cool down before applying it cjn the affected skin. Keep it there until it hardens.
Calamine lotion: lt provides fast relief from the itching and it prevents cloths from sticking to the blisters and causing pain.
Aloe vera juice: lt provides fast relief from all the symptoms of poison oak.
Banana peel: Rub the irritated skin with the inside of a banana peel.
Jewelweed: lt is best to use fresh juice, but if you don’t have the fresh herb, you can also use powder.
Cold Water: Cold water is effective when used as soon skin comes in contact. Cold water helps spreading the oil. 5o use as much water required to spread it offthe body totally.
Hot baths: After getting the rash, taking a hot shower releases histamine. Histamine causes itching. Release of histamine lowers its level giving relief from itching. For some time hot bath can cause intense itching when histamine is released.
Vinegar: Apply white vinegar. Dilute it and apply. Be careful as it may cause stinging.
Tea Tree Oil: Dilute tea tree oil and apply to the affected area.
Citrus fruits: Massage the peel of citrus food on the rash.
Baking Soda: Put little baking soda in the bath or make a paste and apply. Be careful not to apply this on open wounds.
lf you have poison oak plant growing, it needs to be destroyed. Do not burn the plant, completely uproot it. Wear protective clothing like full pants, boots, gloves and full sleeves while being anywhere near the plant.
Skin rashes and several other skin problems are considered to be some of the very common issues that people of every age have to experience for several reasons. Healthy and beautiful skin is something that almost every living person desires to have. Rashes generally explain some disturbances in the human system. These disturbances are generally the reason for the formation of rashes on the skin of any person. There are several reasons which could cause skin rashes to include:
- Skin irritation, which is considered to be one of the very many major reasons for having skin rashes. rhe irritation makes people to go for scratchingthat specific area of the skin, which results into causing skin rashes.
- For some people, getting into contact with certain objects or sometimes having certain food material that happens to be not suitable for that person results into forming rashes throughout the skin.
- Poisonous plants as well as other dirt particles might get into the human system which might not be suitable for that person and thus causes allergic rashes which sometimes gets to become a medical issue.
- Jewelry and certain fabrics happen to be causing allergy to certain people that result into skin rashes.
- Sometimes viral infection causes rashes on the human skin. The infections could be very harmful for the entire human system and the rashes thus formed might actually require medical treatment at a later stage.
- Exposure to certain parasites and insects might cause allergy and might result into getting rashes on any person as well.
Itchy skin rash thus could be consiclered to be a very disturbing thing that sometime make people get into serious problems which at times require proper attention.
- Find out the reason that is causing the rashes. Once the reason is found out, the remedies could be made out accordingly.
- Using medically approved products against such rashes could be really helpful when it comes to treating such itchy rashes.
- One of the very obvious things that usually increase the chances of having rashes is the tendency to itch that particular area of the skin. Thus the very first thing that one needs to do in order to stop causing rashes is that, that person needs to stop itching the place. This is because itching it is very harmful and makes that part of the skin much more prone to infection.
- Taking a very fresh bathing could help the skin get rid of the infection prone viruses. The ultimate goal is obviously to get rid of allergies and rashes. Thus cleanliness and wearing fresh and clean clothes is also very important.
Olive oil: You can apply olive oil over these rashes. Olive oil is an effective healing ‘ agent. lt can help in the healing process of the rashes. The moisture that it will give to your skin can surely help in promoting skin renewal to ensure your recovery from these irritations. Apply olive oil for at least twice a day.
Aloe vera: Aloe vera is very popular among skin care companies. This plant contains various elements that can rejuvenate the skin and bring back its youth. Aloe vera is very effective in healing simple skin irritations. Apply fresh extract of aloe vera over the affected areas once a day.
Oatmeal: Try to use oatmeal to get rid of these rashes. lt is very effective in healing skin inflammation. Pour at least one cup of uncooked oatmeal inside the bathtub filled with water. You have to submerge the affected areas to this solution for about 20 minutes. lt can help in keeping your skin soft and healthy.
Baking powder: Baking powder will keep the rashes moisture free. This is very effective in skin irritations caused by jock itch. Fungi like to be in damp environment. Baking powder will help you keep the affected areas dry all the time. lt will ensure faster healing for the rashes.
Chamomile tea: Chamomile has a very soothing effect. Try to use chamomile tea in healing the rashes. You just need to boil one bag of chamomile tea. Allow it to cool down. Soak a clean cloth and apply it over the rashes. You need to do it twice a day to see better results.
Vitamin C: One thing that you need to remember is to increase your intake of vitamin C. Try to eat more fruits like grapes, oranges, and strawberries. These are very rich in vitamin C. lt can aid in healing the rashes in a much faster way. lnclude broccoli and tomatoes in your diet too.