Poison ivy grows nearly all over the continental United States, and though the leaves may appear harmless an encounter with them is bound to be less than pleasant. You may be able to manage some of the symptoms caused by poison ivy exposure at home but it's important to seek professional help to prevent complications, learn more by contacting Dr. James Ralston of the Dermatology Center of McKinney in Mckinney, TX.
Urushiol is the oil that coats the poison ivy leaves and which can cause a reaction in almost everyone who comes in contact with it. Only about 20% of lucky people do not have an allergic reaction to urushiol, but for the rest, it can manifest in a rash and blisters.
While the rash is not contagious from person to person, if there is lingering oil on your skin it can definitely spread that way, as it's the oil that causes the rash.
Help with the Itch
At-home remedies and over-the-counter medication may be able to help reduce the symptoms, namely the itch associated with poison ivy.
The first thing to do is to wash the affected area and to wash all clothes and anything that came in contact with the poison ivy. It's recommended to use alcohol to prevent infection and to remove any of the oil that may be leftover.
Soaking in a warm bath can help with the itch, and so can a variety of home remedies such as aloe vera and baking soda or cucumber paste.
Some over-the-counter cortisone creams and lotions can also help but it's important to seek help from your doctor if the rash becomes widespread, or if it affects the face or genitals.
Treatment for Poison Ivy in Mckinney, TX
Depending on the severity of the rash your doctor may suggest a steroid treatment or other prescription ointments or creams. If the blisters have developed a bacterial infection antibiotics may be necessary.
So if you'd had a less than pleasant encounter with poison ivy you can find relief by scheduling a visit with your Mckinney, TX, dermatologist Dr. Ralston of the Dermatology Center of McKinney by dialing (972) 548-0333.