The constant itching leading to redness and blisters on your skin can be due to the allergy caused by Poison Ivy, a toxic plant. The plant is mostly found in the wild but can also grow along the sides of the roads and the trails. If you somehow get in contact with the plant, it is possible that you may develop an allergic reaction known as Contact Dermatitis. Such a similar response is also known to be caused by Poison oak. Essential oils for Poison Ivy are a great way to treat such allergic reactions. These allergies may last up to 10-15 days. However, in severe cases, they may take up over 30 days to heal. To quicken up the process, use essential oils.
Types of Poison Ivy
Different states have different kinds of Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, and Poison Sumac(1). The best way to identify such plants is that these plants always have a cluster of three pointed leaves close to the stem. Most of these are poisonous; hence, it is better to stay away from them.
Symptoms of Poison Ivy Reaction
You may develop a poison ivy rash as early as four hours to as long as ten to twelve days on exposure to the plant. The very first thing to do in case you get in contact with such plant is to wash it water or alcohol. If you fail to do so and the oil of the plant remains on your skin, then it may cause a skin reaction.
The symptoms of the reaction are as follows:
- Redness on the skin
- Swelling may also occur in severe cases
- Difficulty in breathing, in case you have inhaled Poison ivy smoke
Causes of Poison Ivy Reaction
The plant of poison ivy secretes an oily resin called Urushiol. This oily resin sticks to almost anything that comes in contact with it. It is colorless and odorless; hence, you might not identify it on your skin. In cases where the oil remains on your surface for long, and you are unable to wash it off early, the region might develop an allergic reaction.
The severity of the allergy depends upon the sensitivity of the skin and the duration of exposure to the oil. Some might develop the response too early while others might develop it years later. It is not contagious unless the oil spreads to other parts of the body. You may also incur severe reaction on inhalation of smoke on burning the plant.
How to use Essential Oils for Poison Ivy treatment?
One can treat the poison ivy reaction by using over the counter methods. However, if you are not quite into using medications and are looking or natural remedies, then essential oils for poison ivy are a great option(2). These oils obtained from plants are quite potent and can be helpful in treating various conditions including Poison Ivy.
What Essential Oils to use for Poison Ivy?
Essential oils are known to have analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and anti-bacterial properties that make them quite effective in treating reactions caused by poison ivy and poison oak. Mentioned below is the list of essential oils for poison ivy that can cure the trouble and give you relief instantly.
1. Use Tea Tree Oil for treating Poison Ivy reaction
Tea Tree Essential Oil is one of the best essential oils for poison ivy(3). Its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce the symptoms of the result. Using the oil also helps reduce pain and prevent secondary infections.
How to use?
- Blend 5 drops of tea tree oil in one tablespoon of jojoba or olive oil
- Massage the oil blend on the affected area
- It promotes faster healing of the area infected by poison ivy
2. Coconut oil provides the best treatment for Poison Ivy Pus
Coconut oil is widely accepted to be among the most effective natural therapies for disease-causing organisms and other toxins(4). Its fatty acids can also help in treating the allergy caused due to poison ivy or the poison oak. You can manage the blisters effectively by using coconut oil.
How to use?
- Take a few drops of coconut oil
- Rub the oil on the affected region
- Let the pus ooze out
- Clean the pus so that it does not infect the skin again
- Repeat this until the discharge stops flowing
- You need to do this daily so that the blister dries up
3. Peppermint oil can effectively treat Poison Ivy Itch
Poison Ivy reaction is known to cause severe itching. If you wish to get relief from it, then use peppermint oil(5). Application of the oil helps soothe inflammation, burning, and itching caused due to contact dermatitis.
How to use?
- Take two to three drops of the peppermint oil. In case of sensitive skin, you can dilute the oil with coconut or olive oil
- Massage the oil on the affected area
- Menthol present in peppermint has a cooling effect that soothes the inflammation and reduces itching
4. Lavender is one of the most effective essential oils for Poison Ivy
Lavender Essential Oil is quite potent with restorative properties that provide quick healing of poison ivy itch and other symptoms. It fastens up the skin healing process and reduces inflammation.
How to use?
- Take four to five drops of Lavender essential oil
- Apply them directly to the area of the reaction
- Repeat the process daily to reduce the symptoms
Read More: Lavender Oil Benefits
5. Neem oil can help cure Poison Ivy rash easily
If you wish to get rid of poison ivy symptoms sooner, then Neem oil can be of great help. Its antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties make it one of the most useful remedies for poison ivy treatment(6).
How to use?
- Take a few drops of diluted Neem Oil mixed in any carrier oil
- Apply it on the affected region
- Let it remain there for half an hour
- After that, wash the oil with water
- You should repeat the process one to two times a day for at least a week to see the results
6. How to get rid of Poison Ivy and poison oak allergy with Cypress Essential Oil?
The antiseptic properties present in Cypress Essential oil promotes fast healing by preventing infections(7). It also helps soothe the inflammation and reduce the pain caused due to the allergic reaction.
How to use?
- Add few drops of Cypress Oil in coconut oil
- Massage the mixture on the area of infection
- Do this at least two times a day to see quick results
Also Read: Home Remedies to cure Allergy
7. Get relief from Poison Ivy and oak infection with Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus with its powerful ingredients makes it to the list of essential oils for poison ivy. It has a quick effect on the inflammation caused by the allergic reaction. The menthol present in it helps reduce the pain and burning caused due to the rash.
How to use?
- Take few drops of the oil and apply it on the affected region
- Repeat the process one to two times a day
- The healing properties of the oil ensure fast recovery
8. Myrrh oil also counts among the most effective essential oils for Poison Ivy
Application of Myrrh essential oil increases skin hydration and soothes the pain due to the allergy. It speeds up the process of healing.
How to use?
- Add few drops of the oil in your bath
- Soak it correctly for the oil to work and stimulate the healing process
9. Use Helichrysum Oil for treating rashes due to Poison Ivy
Helichrysum Oil is known to have anti-inflammatory properties that are quite effective against Poison Ivy symptoms. The rejuvenating compounds present in the oil help treat the reaction and ease pain and inflammation. It further improves the immune system of the body against the response.
How to use?
- Add five drops of Helichrysum Oil in a tablespoon of coconut oil
- Apply the blend to the inflamed area
- Do this two times a day till the problem subsides
Recommended Read: Home Remedies for Skin Rashes
10. Geranium oil is an excellent remedy to treat Poison Ivy
Geranium oil can work wonders for those suffering from an allergic reaction due to Poison ivy. Its anti-allergic properties can quickly soothe the itching and other symptoms of the rash. It prevents the release of additional histamines and helps bring the immune system back to its normal functioning.
How to use?
- Take five drops of the oil and mix them in a tablespoon of coconut oil
- Massage the blend on the affected area
Side-Effects of Essential oils for Poison Ivy
Essential oils are getting famous for treating Poison Ivy for their useful properties that accelerate the recovery process. But if you wish to use them, then it is highly recommended that you should first check your skin’s sensitivity as these oils are quite compelling. Also, you must use them in diluted form as these may cause:
- Severe Headaches
- Allergic Reactions
- Skin Rashes
Other Natural Treatments for Poison Ivy
On exposure to Poison Ivy, the very first thing that you need to do is wash the exposed area thoroughly to remove the oil that causes the reaction. If you develop a rash, then follow the natural treatments listed below that can aid in easing the symptoms and treating the rashes.
Add Oatmeal or Epsom salt to your bath
Add a cup of oatmeal or two cups of Epsom Salt in a warm bath and soak yourself in it to ease the poison ivy trouble.
Use potato paste
Potato is known to have anti-inflammatory properties; thus, can prove to be quite effective against Poison Ivy. Apply the minced potato on the affected region and cover it with a plastic wrap. It aids in treating the rashes due to Poison ivy.
Treat the blisters with a mixture of coffee and baking soda
Take half a bowl of baking soda and add to it cold coffee to make a thick paste. Apply this paste on the blisters. It helps in removing the poison.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Do Essential Oils have a shelf life?
Response: Essential Oils once opened do get affected by sunlight, oxygen, and heat that changes their composition. Hence, you can say that essential oils have a shelf life.
2. Can I consume essential oils?
Response: Essential oils are mostly for topical application or inhalation. Only a few are ingestible. Intake of some essential oils may prove to be fatal.
Besides being painful and annoying, the blisters caused by Poison Ivy are embarrassing. Essential oils for Poison ivy accelerate the skin’s healing process so that you can get quick relief from them. These are readily available and prove to be a natural remedy for those who frequently get affected by Poison Ivy.