As families spend time outside hiking there are many things happening and things to worry about, one of those is whether someone will get poison ivy. The good thing is that it is easily preventable and treatable if someone is exposed on the hike. Read on to learn more about how to id it, treat it, and prevent it.
You’ve probably heard the rhyme, leaves of 3, let them be! This is what the actual plant will look like while out in the woods. If a person is exposed the rash looks like lines or streaks on the skin, which becomes red, itchy, and swollen with blisters that ooze clear fluid. After a few days, the blisters may become crusty and start to flake off. It can take 1 to 2 weeks to heal.
How to treat the rash:
- Apply calamine lotion 3 or 4 times a day to ease the itching.
- Apply topical 1 percent hydrocortisone cream.
- Trim your child’s fingernails to discourage scratching.
- Draw a cool bath or oatmeal bath to soothe their skin.
- If your pediatrician recommends it, try an oral antihistamine to reduce the itching.
Ways to protect kids from poison ivy:
- Teach kids how to identify poison ivy, oak, and sumac.
- Avoid areas where the plants live.
- If you have dogs wash them after spending time in the woods.
- Dress kids in long sleeves and pants when playing in wooded areas.
- Wash clothes immediately after being in the woods.
- If kids touch poison ivy, wash the skin immediately using lots of soap.