What does poison ivy plant look like

How To Get Rid of Poison Ivy and Oak Rashes

If you start to notice little itchy bumps in a line or red bumps near your ankles, wrists, and arms, you might have a poison ivy rash. Take some time to read the tips below to learn how to get rid of a rash caused by the allergen-producing plant.

Natural home remedies for poison ivy

Poison oak and poison ivy has been the downfall of all outdoor adventurers for centuries. I remember as a kid running though the brush at my father’s house and never expecting a thing. Little did I know that I would gain the knowledge to get rid of a poison ivy rash and stop a poison oak itch overnight from the wisdom of my father. He had many cures for these itchy plants, but only a few worked and I, as well as many other people, have been using these proven techniques to rid of a poison rash for years. We will show you some of the best poison ivy treatments and how to effectively reduce your oak swelling.

Baking soda

A simple solution of baking soda and warm water can work wonders to draw toxins and soothe your ivy burn. Reducing the swelling of your itch and alleviating red blisters, just apply a small paste to your affected area. Create a paste of a ratio of 3:1 of baking soda and warm water and apply directly to your ivy rash. After about 10 minutes, it will dry and literally flake off.

Although this only provides temporary relief, baking soda still works amazingly. Some skip the haste and just take a warm bath with some baking soda mixed it and this is a great alternative. Take precaution around your eyes though, as baking soda can be painful and dangerous near the eyes.

Oatmeal paste

Help me, I’m covered in a terrible itchy red rash and I can’t get rid of it. Well, I have a very simple solution to get rid of a poison ivy itch. First, take some oatmeal (this can be any type of oatmeal) and grind it up until a fine powder is left. Second, take a cheesecloth or pantyhose and fill it with this fine powder. Tie a knot in one end so you effectively create a bag of oatmeal. Finally, start a warm bath and throw the oatmeal bag in there. After about 30 minutes, the oatmeal powder will be infused into the bath water and all you have to do is lay in it. What a wonderful solution. All that’s left to do is literally lay down in your luxurious bathtub and relax for about 30 minutes to cure your poison ivy blisters. Oatmeal has many skin-soothing compounds and can greatly help.

Banana peels

I remember when I first head this method. How could rubbing a banana peel on your poison ivy rash get rid of the itch? For many people, this is just a wives tale that doesn’t work, but for some it actually works! See, the mind is a powerful thing and if a person is convinced that this method works, then their body will react proactively and produce positive effects! Eat a banana and flip the banana peel inside out. Then rub the inside of the peel on your rash to get immediate relief. Repeat 2-3 times a day and by the third day the rash will be gone. Some people even say that watermelon rinds can reduce poison swelling.

Apple cider vinegar

Apple cider vinegar, or any vinegar for that matter, has some amazing medicinal qualities. Take a washcloth or some other type of fabric and soak it in some apple cider vinegar. If you want to know how to get rid of a poison ivy rash, just place this towel on your rash and watch it disappear overnight. Actually, just washing with vinegar can greatly improve your ivy situation. I still recommend pouring some vinegar onto a cotton ball and placing on any poison ivy blisters. Apple cider vinegar can dry up poison ivy overnight in some cases.

Aloe Vera

Literally having thousands of home cures, Aloe Vera can get rid of just about any health problem. For some reason, aloe vera can help improve any medical condition, including a sunburn and poison ivy. Some poor souls even have a sunburn and poison ivy at the same time. This is a horrific experience, because the sunburn causes your skin to hurt whenever touched, and the poison ivy causes itchiness. Simply put, you don’t want to have both a sunburn and a poison ivy rash. Anyways, consider purchasing an aloe vera plant or some aloe vera moisturizer to apply on your rash. Not only will this heal the surrounding skin, it will also release compounds that have been proven to stop itching and burning.

Rubbing alcohol

When I am in deep brush or deer hunting, I always carry a small bottle of rubbing alcohol on me. There are just so many possibilities to use it. Imagine that you’ve cut yourself and need to address the wound. Pop out the rubbing alcohol bottle and clean it right up. What if you run into some poison ivy and get the natural oils on you? Simply get out the alcohol bottle and pour it on your arm to reduce the chance of getting a poison ivy rash. This will slow down the rate at which your rash shows up and might even reduce it. The chemical that most bodies are allergic to is called urushiol, which can be washed off with rubbing alcohol.

Cold compress

Applying an ice pack directly to your poison ivy rash has always been an effective solution. The lack of heat will cause your pores to close and reduce the potential to absorb more of the toxic oils found in poison ivy. Using a cold compress will consequently reduce itchiness which can prevent scratching. This is extremely important because scratching a poison ivy blister or rash can cause the skin to bleed. Open wounds are prime environments for bacteria and infection to thrive. To prevent future problems from arising, don’t itch your poison oak rash.

Antihistamine medication

Since poison ivy and poison oak are naturally allergic reactions to an external oil, taking an antihistamine should help. Allergy pills can be purchased from almost any superstore and are effective for many people. Ask your doctor before starting any major medication change.

What does poison ivy look like

Poison Ivy generally grows around other weeds and tall grass. The leaves are green and in the right environment with the best conditions, ivy plants can grow up to 3 feet tall. Poison oak vines grow around trees and can literally dominate the surrounding foliage. Not very many outdoorsmen realize that poison ivy actually blooms and produces small flowers. Ivy flower buds are generally unattractive and quite small, so I can see why many people think this. Mature poison ivy plants actually produce green berries in the summer and ripen into a white color. Stay away from these berries.

“Leaves of three, let it be” 

The leaves of an ivy grow in triplets of three leaves, which is why many people remember the saying, “Leaves of three, let it be”. This is just a simple reminder to stay away from poison ivy and a trick to spot it. The leaves can grow up to 4 inches long, but usually stay pretty small.

Poison sumac rashes are ten times worse than any poison ivy or oak rash. In fact, poison sumac rashes usually result in painful blisters and sore wounds that require a poison sumac steroid shot. When I was 10 years old, I went to a dermatologist because my face swelled up due to contact with poison sumac. The result was a steroid shot in both butt cheeks, and a week worth of sitting strangely. Joking aside, as soon as you notice a rash, consider visiting your health care provider before it worsens.


Statistics say that between 15 to 20 percent of people are not allergic to the poisonous allergen produced from ivy and oak plants. Most of the time poison ivy rashes will show up within 48 hours. If you think you may have come in contact with some poisonous herb, rinse your skin immediately. I recommend taking a warm shower with mild soap to wash off all the toxins. Also, remove all clothes that may have come in contact and wash them twice. Actually, the clothes should be washed at least three times otherwise the toxins that cause the poison oak allergic reaction can linger for up to 3 years. Be proactive and stay safe by washing your shirts, jeans, and other garments as soon as possible.

Try to refrain from scratching the poison ivy or oak rash. This will only cause future problems. The risk of opening the wounds or producing blisters on your arm or legs can create hole for infection and more serious health problems to enter. Tape your hands together when sleeping to prevent nighttime scratching. Wrap the blisters and rash in some gauze or a baidaid to help create a psychological and physiological hack to prevent itching. If after a few days the poison ivy allergy doesn’t clear up, consider visiting a doctor or dermatologist for professional advice.


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