Preventing Poison Ivy

Well, the first way to prevent would be to avoid but I have two small children and I might as well hold back the wind than curb their enthusiasm when outdoors. With that said, we can have both, a wonderful outdoor experience and a safe one by learning to identify poison ivy.

Poison Ivy has some distinctive traits but can be difficult to identify:
1) three leaves together
2) shiny leaves in the spring
3) reddish in the fall
4) Isn't supposed to grow in higher elevations so north of Lake Placid is a safe bet

To prevent:
1) In your car/backpack First Aid kit keep a bottle of isopropyl alcohol and some wipes
2) Direct contact is needed to get a poison ivy rash
3) Dogs are carriers so beware if you are in an area known for poison ivy
4) Isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol helps to dissolve the urushiol oil that causes an allergic reaction. There are commercial products that will do the same thing and perhaps be gentler on a child's skin.
5) With small children wrap their hands so they don't rub any oils onto their face.
6) The oils will need to be cleaned off any effected area within 10 minutes of contact.
7) Store clothes in a plastic bag until able to wash them. Contact with even the smallest amount of poison ivy can cause a break-out.
8) when you get to a place with a shower take a cool water shower with


TourPro said…
I used to get Poison Oak/Sumac all the time in California, but seem to be immune from the East Coast type.

One thing to also wash is your pet if they've been out running around with you.
Diane said…
Thank you! Yes, don't forget your pets. Rubbing against them after a stroll through a poison ivy patch is akin to rolling in it yourself. Best bet is to keep them away from everyone until you can get home and wash them off. Don't forget to wear gloves.
Lucky for you to be immune. Apparently only 10% of people are immune. My sister had such a bad reaction she ended up in hospital.

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