Poison ivy is a type of plant that is popularly found in the west and is classified as Toxicodendron diversilobum. An allergic reaction that takes place when someone comes in contact with this plant is called a poison oak rash.
The poison oak plant appears leafy and can climb like vines in shady areas and in open spaces it can grow as long as 6 feet. It may have green or yellow flowers and the leaves are in groups of odd numbers such as 3, 5, or 7.
Poison oak comes in various forms like poison ivy or poison sumac. In any case, a poison oak rash will take effect, and based on the type of plant you came in contact with, you need to seek poison sumac rash treatment or poison ivy treatment.
The poison oak rash is a result of a secretion oil called urushiol that poison oak releases when the plant is damaged in any way. When you come in contact with the plant, this allergen is absorbed into your skin. Based on the symptoms you need to seek poison oak rash treatment soon to prevent permanent damage to the skin.
What Are The Poison Ivy Symptoms After Contact?
Based on the type of plant you came in contact with, your symptoms will let you know which kind of poison oak rash you have. In case you have the following poison ivy symptoms, you’ll know which treatment to seek:
- Redness on the skin, especially in and around the area that came in contact with the plant.
- Swelling in the affected area.
- Constant itching in the area that came in contact with the poison ivy plant.
- Small blisters pop up in and around the affected area.
- Trouble breathing. This typically happens if you inhale the smoke when poison ivy was burnt.
These poison ivy symptoms usually appear 12 to 48 hours after making contact with the plant. Therefore, it is common to spread the urushiol oils all over the body by simply touching different areas with your fingertips. There is no method of preventing the blunder, thus, if you decide to go hiking or enjoy outdoor activities, make it a point to shower with hot water and scrub away any foreign particles before deliberately touching parts of your body.
When the poison oak rash from poison ivy does appear, it will look like a red line on the area where the plant touched the body. It will usually follow a certain direction as well. If the rash remains persistently after 2 to 3 weeks, seek advanced medical help.
What Are Poison Ivy Treatments?
If you have poison ivy symptoms, it is time to seek poison ivy treatments that are targeted for poison oak rashes caused by contact with the plant. It is particularly necessary to seek medical attention if you notice the following signs:
- If there was poison ivy smoke that you inhaled.
- Your skin is constantly swelling.
- Pus is oozing out of the blisters on the poison oak rash.
- The area of the poison oak rash is spreading gradually
- The poison oak rash impacted areas around the mouth, eyes, or genitals.
- If you have a high fever, anything above 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 37.8 degrees Celsius.
- The poison oak rash is displaying no signs of getting better.
In case these poison ivy symptoms affect you, call the doctor who will recommend the following forms of treatment that you can follow at home for the rash to clear:
- Apply calamine lotion to the affected area for relief
- Apply lotions and cream containing menthol on the affected area to subvert the inflammation and discomfort.
- Soak the area affected by the poison oak rash in a cool bath with half a cup of baking soda or a bath product that contains oatmeal in it.
- Opt for ointments and creams that carry cortisones. You can acquire these over-the-counter medications easily for poison ivy treatment.
- Ask the healthcare provider for recommendations of oral antihistamines that can help you sleep well. Normally they prescribe harmless antihistamines such as diphenhydramine found in Benadryl. You can also opt for more suitable options that won’t instigate too much dizziness but will help you sleep comfortably. In such cases, you may get a prescription for loratadine commonly found in Claratin, Alavert, and other pharmaceutical products.
What Is The Poison Sumac Rash Treatment?
Poison sumac is another variant of the poison oak variety that can cause a poison oak rash. Much like poison ivy symptoms, the signs of contact with poison sumac could take hours to show. However, waiting to see the effects before you render poison sumac rash treatment is a bad idea. Instead, aim to start treating the affected area as soon as you realize that you may have come in touch with poison sumac.
Start by getting rid of the oils that may have transferred from the plant onto your body and clothes. If you went camping or to enjoy outdoor activity, or simply came in touch with the plant on your way home, don’t worry. Just wash the areas of your skin that were exposed thoroughly, preferably with a good scrubbing agent. If possible, take a shower shortly after contact and get rid of the oils and toxins from your skin.
Avoid warm water as it may help spread the oils all over your body. If possible, opt to wash the exposed areas of skin with rubbing alcohol or washing agents specially designed for poisonous plants.
A poison oak rash can develop due to close contact with any variant of the poison oak family. Based on the type of plant with which you made contact, you may need to seek poison ivy treatment or poison sumac rash treatment.
Normally a poison oak rash starts to disappear after a couple of weeks. Some rashes that are persistent may require acute medical attention. Keep a close eye on your poison sumac or poison ivy symptoms in order to acquire the ideal poison oak rash treatment for your situation.