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The Best Poison Ivy Treatment

Poison-ivy2.jpgSummer is just around the corner for many of us and that means more outdoor activities. Hiking, biking, kayaking. All of these fun summer traditions are great family activities. But being outdoors, while fun, can also mean a better chance of getting a poison ivy rash. So it's a good idea to stock up on products that will keep your family healthy. There is more than one poison ivy treatment and here we'll cover what they are and how to use them effectively.

The sooner you deal with a poison ivy rash, the less time it will take to heal. Of course, it's difficult to treat it right away when you're on a long hike and far from civilization. If possible, however, wash the area where you've been exposed with soap and water as quickly as possible. This will reduce the long-term effects of the poison. Otherwise, it's just a matter of treating the symptoms. For the most part, poison ivy treatment is a matter of waiting it out (it may take between 14-21 days to go away). But the severity of the rash will dictate what treatment you seek.

You might try Benadryl or another over-the-counter antihistamine to cope with the itching. Not everyone seems to think this is useful. And remember that this poison ivy treatment will make you drowsy so don't take one and then hop in your car to go to work. Considering the low cost of the product and the fact that it doesn't require a prescription, it might be worth trying if the itching is unbearable.

Cortisone is a popular poison ivy treatment. Cortisone can be found as an over-the-counter treatment or as a prescription based drug. According to experts, this will only help before blistering occurs or after the blisters have gone away. So timing with this product is everything. Cortisone does relieve itching and since it is applied directly to the skin, it may be more effective than an oral medication in some instances. To deal with the blisters, cold water compresses and Burow's solution are hailed as an effective treatment for poison ivy. They dry up the blisters faster.

If exposure has been severe (for instance, facial exposure) and the rash and blistering is out of control, see a doctor. You may need a stronger medication than what's found in your local drugstore. Prednisone is a common poison ivy treatment for severe cases. It's a strong oral medication used in a number of applications. If your doctor prescribes this or any other prescription drug, make sure to complete the dosage given to you. Otherwise, the poison ivy may just return for a second round.

You may be told of other treatments by friends or family members. Many so-called treatments haven't been proven to actually help, but most of them are also harmless otherwise and worth a try if you're out of ideas. Again, seek poison ivy treatment from a doctor if the rash becomes severe or your face has been infected. Otherwise, try some of these over-the-counter solutions to deal with mild poison ivy this summer.

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This page was last modified on 11 May 2010, at 08:41.
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