Poison Oak Rash

Poison oak rash also known as sumac rash is a type of allergic reaction caused by exposure to poisonous plants. It largely occurs on people who are exposed to outdoors environment, more particularly to bushes and garden.

Poison oak is a type of plant growing in many states of America. You can see this creeper along the banks of river with shining green leaves and slender red stem. It is largely seen on the West Coast region and poison sumac grows along the banks of River Mississippi.

The plant grows as a shrub or vine depending on the climate.

Causes :

Allergic reaction on the skin is caused due to direct skin contact of these shrubs. When a person gets in touch with the resins of these plants he may develop skin rashes. The resins enter the skin quickly causing skin rashes. Normally this type of skin rash is not contagious and the person should wash away the oil completely to avoid spreading.

There is every chance for the droplets of plant oils to enter your clothing and tools like shoes, which may later enter your skin for causing skin rash.

Touching the pets or clothing that has contacted the plant resins can spread rash. If you are exposed to burning plants of ivy or sumac it can cause skin rash with blisters since oil particles are carried away by wind.

Symptoms :

Some of the signs of poison oak and poison ivy rash are itching, irritation, red bumps or blister formation on the skin. The oil of the plant penetrates into your skin causing red patchy rashes. In due course, it can cause red blisters of large size with fluid inside. The skin rash may vary from mild to severe and the symptoms will be present for 4-7 days.

Treatment :

Home care treatments are available in plenty. First if you suspect poison oak rash you should wash the affected skin area with soap water. It is very much necessary to wash the skin thoroughly since the plant resin will enter the skin quickly.

To avoid spreading of rash to other parts of the body you can scrub your fingernails using brush. Do not use the same clothing without washing since it can have some particles of plant resins. Wash the clothes and shoes you have used in the garden or river banks. It can spread through your pets and hence you have to bathe the animals immediately to remove any oil content on their fur.

If there is itching on the lower legs, you can apply calamine lotion or hydrocortisone lotion. Avoid sitting in hot places since body heat can increase the itching sensation.

Bathing in oatmeal gives you great relief from itching. Immerse yourself on bathtub that contains oatmeal for some time. Soaking in aluminum acetate solution will also reduce itching.

In case creams and lotions are not effective in controlling itching you can take antihistamine pills. If there is severe itching with swelling you can consult your doctor.

Medical :

Your doctor will examine the affected area and give corticosteroid drugs (prednisone) either in the form of injection or oral pills depending on the intensity of rash. Antihistamines are given for managing itching immediately.

For people with wheezing or asthma problem, you can use albuterol or any other bronchodilator for dilating the airway. If you feel like fainting lie down on the floor and keep your legs elevated so that it helps blood flow to the brain.

Burning of the plant can aggravate itching since the plant resins can spread through smoke entering your skin.

Pictures of Poison Oak Rash :

Images, Pics, Pictures and Photos of Poison Oak Rash

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How to prevent?

Always wear long sleeves or full covered clothing when you are planning to visit areas of river banks where poison oak or sumac largely grows. You can apply ivy block lotions or creams on the legs and hands to prevent the oil from entering your skin.

You need to educate your children about the harmful effects of ivy and oak plants. Keep your pets away from them. Wash the clothes and other accessories once you get back home.

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