Poison ivy is one of the common plants that cause allergic skin
reaction after physical contact. Its rash emanates from the oily
resinous coating called “urushiol”. It may not necessarily
be acquired through direct physical because it can also be through
contamination of clothing.
Previous history of poison ivy rash is not a determining factor
in the recurrence of such irritation. The individual becomes sensitized
in due time if exposed enough with the plant’s branches, leaves,
and roots. Pets can also be carriers of the rash if they are adequately
exposed to poison ivy parts.
Fortunately, poison ivy rash is not contagious. The fluid that
may ooze out in blisters does not necessarily spread the infection.
Signs and symptoms of poison ivy rash may appear from 4 hours to
10 days after exposure. A previous diagnosis of the skin condition
may denote increase in the sensitivity of the person. This means
that an individual’s system reacts to an allergen even to
the slightest exposure of only a few allergenic molecules found
in poison ivy plants.
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Poison Ivy Rash: Signs and Symptoms
The same as any other forms of contact dermatitis, redness and
severe itching are distinctive characters of poison ivy rash. The
rash appears in patches or in steaks in areas where the body parts
have been in contact with the plant. Aside from the red bumps, blisters
may likely develop on the affected area.
According to symptoms, the allergic reaction due to poison ivy
rash may be mild or severe. In either cases, medical attention is
essentially required. The rash may occur as early as hours to days
after initial contact with the plant’s irritant oil.
Poison Ivy Rash: Prevention
When on outdoors it is best to wear loose clothing so as to avoid
direct contact with the plant. If there are skin block for sunburns,
Ivy Block lotions are also available. It is recommended that Ivy
Blocks are applied in advance to minimize the risk of having poison
Be sure to teach your children to identify other poisonous plants
such as poison oak and sumac. When these plants are existing near
or in your backyards, remove the plants to avoid any chance of exposure.
Pets should also be regularly groomed and sanitized for they can
carry the resins produced by the irritant oil in poison ivy.
Common first-aid treatment for all other contact dermatitis is
water therapy. Immediately wash out with running water any area
of your body that might have been in direct contact with any poisonous
plant. This is to ensure that urushiol or any irritant that may
be present, are removed.