Did you know that around 85% of the population in the United States are allergic to poison ivy? Striking, isn’t it? Poison ivy is a flowering plant that grows almost everywhere in the country. The sap of this plant contains oil that can cause skin irritation and rash. Although the skin rash caused by poison ivy might look like normal skin irritation, it can get severe if not treated immediately.
To soothe skin itchiness and inflammation, there are effective home remedies for poison ivy that can be helpful for a quick treatment. Here are six reliable home remedies for poison ivy itch relief that can help treat the condition.
Try These Home Remedies for Poison Ivy
1. Aloe Vera
Aloe vera helps in soothing and healing skin irritation. It contains 95% water, and the other 5% includes vitamins, enzymes, amino acids, minerals, anti-inflammatory fatty acids, among other compounds. These elements help in treating insect bites, burns, wounds, and skin rashes. The antibacterial properties of aloe vera are an excellent option for treating poison ivy.
It forms a protective layer on the skin that helps in lasting moisturizing effect. This layer keeps the moisture trapped in the skin, which stops the skin from drying and speeds up the healing process. Moreover, aloe vera gel calms skin irritation and soothes inflammation caused by poison ivy(1).
One of the best home remedies for poison ivy itch relief is using aloe vera as a topical treatment. You can either extract fresh aloe vera gel from the plant or also purchase an aloe vera gel and use it regularly. It is essential to apply an adequate amount of aloe vera gel on the affected skin area and create a thin layer as much as possible. That is why it is necessary to use the gel frequently.
You can make aloe vera spray by blending its equal parts of gel with water and pouring the mixture in a spray bottle.
2. Calamine Lotion
Calamine lotion contains zinc oxide and ferric oxide, which has astringent and antipruritic properties, respectively. These ingredients help in drying out the skin irritation caused by poison ivy. Moreover, it is also used in treating skin irritation and inflammation and offers a calming effect.
Before applying the lotion to the inflamed skin, shake the bottle of the lotion well and use it and rub it gently. You may also soak a cotton ball in the lotion and apply it on the skin.
Calamine lotion can be applied to the affected area for 3 to 4 times a day. You may also consult your skin specialist to know the exact amount of required lotion. It is highly recommended to take the advice of a doctor before using any new lotion on the irritated skin area.
3. Jewelweed Salve
One of the best home remedies for poison ivy rash is to use jewelweed(2) salve on the irritated skin. It helps in soothing the itchy, irritated, and inflamed skin. It contains antipruritic properties that help in poison ivy itch relief. Moreover, jewelweed salve can also be used for swelling, bruising, and joint pain.
You can prepare jewelweed salve by taking 1 or 2 stalks of jewelweed and chop them into small pieces. Take beeswax, two capsules of vitamin E, and a ¼ cup of vegetable oil. It is not recommended to use olive oil along with this as it could burn the skin when heated. Simmer the stalked jewelweed in the oil for about ten minutes and strain the mixture using a clean muslin cloth, and pour the mixture in a mason jar.
Now, place the jar on a double boiler and add two vitamin E capsules and grated beeswax. Stir the mixture well until the beeswax melts completely. Store the mixture in the refrigerator.
It is recommended to use jewelweed seed once a day on the affected skin area. You can also consult the doctor before using it on your skin.
[Also Read: Essential Oils for Poison Ivy Cure]
4. Baking Soda
Baking soda for poison ivy has been considered as one of the best ways to treat the inflammation of the skin. It helps in treating the symptoms of the condition, thanks to its exfoliating properties that removes dead skin and cleanse the pores. Moreover, it contains anti-bacterial properties that help keep the skin breakouts at bay.
You can use baking soda by creating its paste. Mix 1 teaspoon of water and three teaspoons of baking soda and apply the paste on the affected skin. Let the paste dry, later rinse it with water. Ensure that you moisturize your skin with calamine lotion or aloe vera gel.
Use the baking soda paste for poison ivy rash once or twice a week. It is not recommended to overuse this paste. Also, if you experience any excess irritation or dryness on the skin after using this paste, consult a doctor immediately.
[Also Read: Health Benefits of Baking Soda]
Apple cider vinegar has anti-inflammatory properties that help in calming the itchiness and redness of the skin. It also helps in balancing the skin’s pH level, which in turn assists in drying out the rashes significantly and removes the dry skin.
Apple cider vinegar for poison ivy is considered one of the most effective home remedies for soothing the skin condition. Mix equal parts of water and apple cider vinegar and soak a cotton ball in the mixture and apply it on the skin rash.
It is recommended to use this apple cider vinegar salve 3 to 4 times a day.
6. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil contains anti-inflammatory properties that help in relieving skin itchiness and redness caused by inflammation. It is also helpful in reducing skin irritation. Moreover, tea tree oil is also known to contain anti-microbial properties. This prevents any skin infection from occurring in case you happen to scratch the affected area on the skin. The oil encourages the activity of white blood cells thereby, speeding the recovery of the skin condition.
One of the best ways to use tea tree oil is in the form of medicated oil. Although essential oils are highly effective in treating poison ivy, it is necessary to dilute the oil before applying it on the affected skin area. Some oils may further aggravate the skin irritation. However, coconut oil is a safer choice, as it contains antimicrobial properties. You can add 1 oz of coconut oil and two drops of tea tree oil, mix it well and apply it on the rash.
Every essential oil, including tea tree oil, are highly potent, and that is why it needs to be used in small doses. Before applying it directly on the affected skin, do a patch test.
The skin rashes caused by poison ivy are one of the most common allergic reactions in the United States. A combination of home remedies can be helpful to treat the skin inflammation caused by poison ivy. To get relief from skin redness and irritation, it is recommended to use these remedies regularly. In case the condition does not seem to better, consult a skin specialist immediately to get prescribed medication if required. Use these above-mentioned home remedies to get relief from skin itchiness and irritation caused by poison ivy.
1. What Are Preventive Measures for Poison Ivy Rash?
It is essential to take preventive measures for poison ivy rash. You can take warm water with soap and an antiseptic and wash the affected skin area thoroughly. As the oil from the plant may quickly spread on to different surfaces, it is necessary to wash all clothes/shoes that may have come in contact with the plant.
2. What Are the Most Effective Home Remedies for Poison Ivy?
Some of the popular and most effective home remedies for poison ivy rash include applying vinegar, aloe vera, baking soda, ocean water, tea tree oil on the skin. Oatmeal bath for poison ivy is another quick treatment. If any of these remedies cause itching or redness of the skin, it is advisable to consult the skin specialist immediately.
3. How Is Vinegar Helpful in Treating Poison Ivy Rash?
Using vinegar for poison ivy rash can be helpful as it relieves itching. It can also help in speeding up the healing process. However, vinegar might sometimes sting which, is why it is recommended to soak it in cotton and apply it to the affected skin.