Poison Ivy, Oak and Sumac

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What is poison ivy? — Poison ivy is a plant that can cause an itchy, red skin rash. When people have this rash, they often say, “I got poison ivy.”

The same substance that causes the poison ivy rash is also found in poison oak, poison sumac, the ginkgo fruit, and mango peels.

How did I get poison ivy? — You might have gotten poison ivy if you:

Touched a poison ivy plant

Touched something that had the plant’s oils on it (such as clothing, animal fur, or garden tools)

Were nearby when poison ivy plants were being burned

What does poison ivy look like? — Poison ivy and poison oak have 3 leaves coming off a single stem. That’s why there is a saying, “leaves of 3, let them be.” The leaves start out green, but they can turn red or brown. Even dead plants can cause the rash .

How does Dr.Paul treat poison ivy related complications? 

He uses steroid creams and prednisone if your rash is severe.

For itching, he uses antihistamines.

For pain, benzocaine and calamine lotion.

If there is infection, he uses antibiotic ointments like neomycin or if there is severe infection, he will give you an antibiotic.

How do I keep from getting poison ivy again? — You can:

Stay away from poison ivy, even if the plant is dead

Wear long sleeves and pants when working near poison ivy, and wash your clothes right away when you are done

Wear thick vinyl gloves when doing yard work (latex and rubber gloves do not always protect against poison ivy)

Gently wash with soap and water if you do touch poison ivy (do not scrub)

Avoid burning poison ivy plants

For a full and fast treatment of poison ivy rash, please visit Dr.Paul’s Clinic or call 814 424 2095.