At best, getting a rash due to exposure to poison ivy, poison oak or poison sumac is a nuisance, and at worse, it can be a serious condition that requires medical treatment.

When you come into contact with one of these plants, the oils from their leaves can penetrate the skin, and if you are in the 85% of the population that is allergic, you will generally develop an itchy, irritating rash.

While you can generally treat a rash due to poison ivy at home, it is important to be alert of what symptoms are normal and what symptoms indicate that you should receive medical attention right away. Read on as our team at AFC Urgent Care North Carolina sheds some light on the topic.

How Can I Treat a Poison Ivy Rash at Home?

For a mild poison ivy rash, you can generally treat it at home with household items and over-the-counter supplies. After washing the area with soap and water (as well as washing all the clothes you were wearing when you came into contact with it), you can find relief by applying anti-itch creams, calamine lotion or a baking soda and water paste to the area.

If you are having trouble sleeping at night, an antihistamine can help you find relief as long as you have taken them before with no issues.

Types of Reactive Plants

  • Poison ivy
  • Poison oak
  • Poison sumac

When Should I Seek Medical Treatment for Poison Ivy?

While most of the time, at-home care is sufficient for poison ivy rashes, they can progress into a serious issue that requires medical attention in some cases.

You should always reach out to your doctor if you have the following symptoms.

Symptoms of Poison Ivy

  • Blistering, itching or swelling that has become severe
  • Rash in the eyes, on the lips or in the mouth
  • A rash that lasts more than seven days

If your poison ivy has persisted or become severe, we can help you. Contact your AFC Urgent Care North Carolina team today to schedule an appointment at one of our urgent care centers.