What are the symptoms of a poisonous plant reaction?
The red, itchy bumps that are a telltale sign of exposure to a poisonous plant don't always show up right away, says Dr. Leigh Vinocur. To learn why, and how you can prevent rashes from poison ivy, oak or sumac, watch this video.
LEIGH VINOCUR: Poison oak, sumac, or poison ivy has a chemical in it that absorbs quickly into your skin.
It sometimes takes several hours. So you're already out of the outdoors and you notice little bumps that start to get
raised, red, and itchy, and then sometimes it can start to weep like a blister and discharge some fluid.
That fluid is not contagious. But the problem is people think it is because patches of poison ivy will crop up
in different areas. It's probably related to the resin from the poison ivy that's gotten on your clothes,
or your pet, or your garden tools that can last for months and months. So if you notice you're getting poison ivy and you haven't been outside, you should consider your pets,
washing your garden tools, and things like that. Some people are severely allergic to poison ivy, and one of the dangers is if you were burning plants
with poison ivy and you Inhale it, you can have severe anaphylactic-type reaction. But a lot of people aren't that allergic
and it gets better on their own. But the key is not to scratch it, because by scratching it you can actually cause it to get infected,
and then you have a whole other set of problems. So taking over-the-counter antihistamines to stop
the itching, and oatmeal baths-- there's calamine lotion-- all of those things can kind of help once you get the rash.
Some people say if you spray your clothes or your skin with antiperspirant that has aluminum chlorohydrate in it,
that it will block the actual resin from getting into your skin or on your clothes. [AUDIO LOGO]
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