Saturday, June 7, 2008

Poison Ivy Update

We are slowly making progress here.  We've even identified where the poison ivy is spreading out into the grassy mowed yard area.  We're researching ways to kill it, and instructing children to avoid this section of the yard.  This means they can not come to me when I hang clothes on the line.

The boys' rashes/reaction seem to have stopped spreading.  After more research, and lots of people sharing their personal experience (online and in real life), I've learned that it is not uncommon for it to spread, even without any more of the urushiol oil present.  It can (especially with heat) move to other areas of the body.  Also their reaction of fever and vomiting is not too uncommon, either. 

I've learned about some of the myths associated with poison ivy.  Breaking the blisters does not cause it to spread.  The blisters have no urushiol oil in them, only white blood cells helping the body to heal and fight against the poison ivy. 

There is no way to speed up the recovery, unless you seek a corticosteroid prescription from your Dr. for a severe reaction.  It's just a matter of keeping the person comfortable, stopping the itching so they don't scratch (which can cause scarring and infection), and avoiding infection if the blisters pop.  In our experience, the small blisters that are close together seem to morph into one giant blister ... and no matter how careful you are with those giant blisters, they will eventually pop.

Benadryl at night seems to help them fall asleep and sleep more soundly, without being awakened by the itching.  We used Aveeno anti-itch lotion and cream (which has oatmeal, calomine lotion, and something else in it), and we also tried a natural calendula cream.  The boys preferred the calendula cream for soothing their rashes.  Even when the rash didn't itch, it just hurt.

They don't look any better yet, and will be quite a sight at church tomorrow, but it isn't spreading anymore.  And that is progress.

Trusting in Him,


  1. My parents know a lot about poison ivy

    Sometimes the oil gets into the clothing that the person was wearing, and can keep irritating them -- even after washing in hot. My mom had to throw out a pair of jeans for that reason.

    Also, once you're sensitized to it, your reaction can be worse each time. So once someone has blistered from it, show extra caution around it.

    Glad to hear they're getting better and it's not still spreading ...

  2. I was glad to see you visit my blog and am enjoying yours a lot!!

    I appreciate this info on poison ivy. I was justthinking of refreshing myself on it as I thought two of us had it a few weeks ago and couldn't remember what I have done/ read in the past. All I could remember was the time I was pregnant and had it really bad for almost a month!!

  3. Poor kids. I'm glad they're getting better. DH had a serious reaction to poison ivy a couple of times and he had the steroid shot.


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