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If I'm struck by poison ivy, what should I do? Is there a way to suppress the itch?

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6 Answers 6

up vote 12 down vote accepted

Have you tried Dock Leaves? They're well known as a way of soothing Nettle stings and might help.

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+1 for Dock Leaves. I always used them as a kid when I inevitably was stung while chasing cows in the fields. I used to think they were called Doc Leaves, short for Doctor! –  John Doyle Jan 25 '12 at 12:14

I use both cortisone and benedryl cream. One reduces swelling, the other reduces the allergic reaction. Make sure to only use water soluble creams! Petroleum based lotions will block the skin from naturally expunging the poison ivy oil.

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I have heard anecdotally that excessive use of (or the use of high potency) topical Benadryl can cause some adverse reactions. I personally got what appeared to be (at least presented like) hives after treating my poison ivy rash with very strong cream. Anyone heard that or have any real evidence for it? –  Greg.Ley Mar 7 '12 at 16:19

Benadryl cream works about as good as anything for me.

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I believe ice can help. It's a local anesthetic, reduces swelling, and closes the pores, keeping the poison out. Of course, it can be hard to find ice..

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Jewelweed should do the job, if you have it locally. It usually grows close to the poison ivy.

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Plantain weed not to be confused with the bannana like fruit.Crush the leaves and rub it on.It is usually growing on the edge of roadways or compacted trails.

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