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poison oak or poison ivy?
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“I just came back from a trip to New Hampshire and have this question for people who have encountered both - Which is worse, poison oak or poison ivy? It seemed like we saw poison ivy everywhere and considering all the crashing through the brush we did I imagine we got pretty exposed. But narry a rash. Is it just that everything is bigger and scarier in the West (just trying to get you East Coasters riled up)? After all, I climbed Mighty Mount Monadnock (a whopping 3100 feet). OK, it was harder that I expected, but honestly - you call that a mountain? But I digress - what is the deal with poison ivy?
Apologies for the East Coast baiting.”
“At least there are no worries about any of our states becoming islands.”
“neither... the rash is an allergic reaction caused by the exact same oil contain in both.”
So Did You Wipe Yer Butt With It???
“Poison schmoison...stinging nettle is the anti-Christ!”
“I'm not allergic to Poison Oak so does that mean I wouldn't be allergic to Poison Ivy either?”
“or poison sumac.... for now but allergies can change very quickly. dont ever count on your immunity.”
“I worked on a crew that cut fire breaks for the State when I was a teenager. Everyone got poison oak at one time or another except for two of us. So we got to cut all of the poison oak from then on. My mom came down with the rash after doing my laundry for me ....so I had to do my own laundry from that point on ;)
The other guy that wasn't allergic made a bet ($20 ) that he could grind up the leaves and smear it on his arms without getting the rash....worse case I've ever seen, stupid dork. 8)
I always respected the stuff and never tempt fate.”
“I was wading around in poison ivy this afternoon looking for a geocache. I was moving from the top of the bluff back down to the trail. It had been raining and slipped and fell on my back right in the biggest patch of poison ivy.
I never have been allergic, but I never went swimming in the stuff either. When we were kids the neighbor used to get it bad. The worse case was when we made a fire and burned some ivy. He contracted a bad case from the smoke.”
“I'm alergic to both. Same kinda rash...same kinda itch. It all is awful!”
“Yeah, I'd always wondered about poison ivy. I can't imagine that I've never been in it for as much hiking and off-trail stuff as I do.
Last weekend I was doing a heavy duty geocache hunt and saw all kinds of three-leaved plants (does poison ivy have a white flower in the spring?) I thought, this will really test if I'm allergic. Back at camp, I "washed" my legs off with anti-bacterial Wet Wipes, although the stuff had already been on a couple hours at least by then.
Here's the best one!! I was off-trail in TEVAS WITH NO SOCKS later! Again, geez, I know there had to be poison ivy. Washed feet off as soon as I could.
All that ever happened was I had maybe 4 tiny blisters on one knee...and they didn't itch. Is that poison ivy?
Also, when I got home I checked the net and think I was in poison sumac too.
PRAISE THE LORD (AND KNOCK ON WOOD) seems I can handle it!!
Like Buddur said, nettles are the worst!!”
“I've had both, Ivy in my younger days in Michigan and Texas, Oak out here in California. My experiences with poison oak have been much more miserable then with the ivy but neither was enjoyable.”
“They both suck!
But the fact that they are plants is cool becuase I like all green things!
“although I have never encountered it firsthand, I have heard that POISON SCHMEGMA is really nasty.
“I've had it just about every where on my body at one point except internally. It sucks!!! I'm highly allergic to all those ivy's. When it gets real bad I get predisone(sp) pills to relieve the itching. Ivy Dry, the stuff with the tannic acid works best for me. I overdose that stuff on the infected areas till I see some progress. Some of the prescription creams and sprays I have gotten in the past really never seemed to do anything. You just have to wait it out alot of the times.
I hated it worst of all on the waist line, then would come the inside of the knees and elbows and lets not forget the fingers. Blistering up so bad between the fingers that you can see the blood pulsate through.
Cold showers and pat drying.”
“Here's a good link. The one plant I saw with flowers was apparently blackberry. BUT.... I saw MANY, MANY OTHERS!!
Everything you wanted to know about posion ivy, at least what it looks like”
“I'm pretty sure poison oak and ivy are the same thing. It's just that it comes in so many forms. It can be a vine, a bush, individual plants, plus the leaves can be smooth or serrated, so people call the same thing different stuff. What an evil plant! (Even if it is pretty and green.) Good webpage lizs.”
“Poison oak and ivy are indeed the same thing, just two varieties of the same plant. Allergic reactions run in seven-year cycles. You can walk through a patch and have no reaction one year, and later all you have to do is be in the same county and come down with a bodaceous rash. I like Ivy Dry too, but for a bad case get to the quack and get some prednisone.
There is a folk belief that if you get a dose of poison ivy early in the spring just after it comes out, you will have protection for the remainder of the year. I would not depend on that being the case at all. I avoid it at all times. I can never remember on which part of the cycle I am.
Whatever you do, don't burn it. You could inhale the smoke and shut your lungs down and that would not be good. Best way to get rid of it around the home is to get a spray can that you spray on the leaves. That may not be environmentally the best thing to do, but otherwise it spreads fast.”
“lizs, good to see you posting again. Seems like you were gone for ages, or maybe we were just on different threads.
I think the plant you saw with three leaves and a white flower may have been a Jack-in-the-pulpit. But my botany is rather poor.”
“Three leaves and white flower would be the aptly named trillium. There are three petals on the flower. Everything comes in threes. Jack in the Pulpit is a greenish flower with a green hood over the opening.”
“But it also comes in white. I doubt it could be mistaken for poison ivey or sumac though.
Poison sumac looks exactly the same as the regular red flowered sumac except for the flowers are white.
I am alergic to prednisone too. It gives me hives on top of my poison ivey. =(”
“I actually stuck my face into a batch of it once. It looked like a flowering tree branch, so I didn't notice that it was a vine. No reaction though. The small white flowers are incredibly sweet-smelling, somewhere between confederate jasmine and honey.”
“They are not the same thing. They are two different species of the same genus.
“I didn’t use to be allergic to poison ivy but after years of being the one elected to pull the stuff up, I’ve developed a mild allergy to it. As long as I don’t really get soaked with the oil, I don’t get it.
My brother, on the other hand, could get it by viewing lizs’ link. He was on a Boy Scout trip once and some idiot put a poison ivy vine on the fire. My brother ended up in the hospital as his esophagus swelled shut.”
“not sure butt (no pun intended) they both suck! I was doing a river cleanup a couple of weeks ago and i must have sat in something (while peeing) because that very next morning i got a rash butt. it didnt start to itch until a couple of days later. so after my husband stopped laughing at me I MADE him go to the store to get me some butt med. because there was no way in hell that i was going to go to the doctor and pull my pants down and ask him what do i have on my butt!”
“My mother straddled a log while my father sawed it up. Turns out it had poison ivy vines on it and she got a nasty rash. The doctor was convinced she had herpes.”
“No, that was your foot!”
“I didn't used to be allergic to either, but have developed a bad allergy to poison ivy. When I hiked the PCT two years ago we walked through a lot of poison oak and never had a serious reaction. But I can't count on it. Next time, I could react. One thing is that there are a couple of very common plants out west that look very like poison oak (Squaw Bush for one) - so some who think they are immune may have just been wandering through squaw bush instead of poison oak - or in the east, through Box Elder instead of poison ivy. Doing trailwork last year I managed to develop poison ivy rash on my face. After my eyes started to swell, I went to the doctor and was told - anytime it gets on your face, go to a doctor. Otherwise, unless it gets infected, don't bother.”
“It is funny that so many people are not allergic to poison ivy. Like Violin, my brother was never allergic to poison ivy. He once fell backwards into a big patch in PA, when we were fishing for sunnies, and didn't get anything. My mom got a bad rash just putting his clothes into the washer. So when my husband and I bought our first fixer upper money pit, my brother was hired to pull out all the poison ivy vines hiding in the bushes. He still didn't get a rash, that lucky guy.”
“I must give credit where credit is due. A Ranger named Rick......LMAO..... gave me that link. I showed him a photo of the white flowering bush. He said it looked liked blackberries ...and he saw a thorn on it. It looks like a blackberry bush on that site, you have to get off the main page to get to it.
We can all THANK RANGER RICK!! lol”
“Ooooooh, Ranger Rick, huh? Is Lizs having a good week?
I miss your wisecracks, Lizs.”
“Well I haven't developed a rash after floudering around in that big ole patch of poison ivy this weekend so I guess the old immunity is still good.
Good genes I guess.”
“Or good jeans. :-)”
“bump to say the least,,,,I got it and it only seems to be getting worse. The word is systemic, I believe.
Lets see, It's on my eyelids, forearms, elbow pockets, inner thighs, waist band area, and a little lower than that and a few other areas.
Anyhoot, I got some steriods going now and I'm wondering if any of you folks that get the 'ivy' have any tricks or have tried any of the OTC meds like 'Zanfel'.”
“Geez! Glad I'm not you! One thing that works is Burt's Bees poison ivy soap, but it sounds like you're too far along for that to help.”
“The doctor's shots and medications, plus use of hydrocortisone should provide relief. It will probable take two to three weeks to die out.
The rash may last for 1 to 3 weeks.”
“If I'm going somewhere I know has lots of ivy, I put on "Ivy Block" before going out. It seems to do well for me.”
and it can usually be found growing right near the poison ivy.”
“I'm not allergic, WOHOO!!!!”
“I have a tube of ointment in my first aid kit "Ivy Dry" that works pretty good if you get it on quick enough and before it spreads.”
“Briar, Birch got the worst case ever from his race, it's still popping new bumps. He got a cortizone shot and has been using Ivysomething or other. He says it's the best stuff he's ever used for itch and drying power. I'll find out exactly what the name is and post back. You have my sympathy.”
“There's an Ivy block or something like that too, isn't there? I hiked with someone who swore by it. I've never had either and don't even know if I'd recognize the plants.
Hope you feel better soon :-)
Another idea, have someone tie your hands up ;-) Wouldn't want to scratch that would ya?”
“Ive been told to wash myself with cold water right after exposure. I do that and still have constant ivy in the summer. Dang woods. This is not recommended by doctors or anyone in their right mind, but scraping the blisters with a knife and pouring bleach over the area is a sure way to kill it. Fast!”
“"I'm not allergic, WOHOO!!!!"
YET - expose yourself to it enough and you will develop a sensitivity”
“IVAREST made by blistex. Good stuff.”
“I am always getting myself into it HOI. Have never had a reaction.”
“But allergies run in twelve year cycles, (according to my allergist who gave me shots for the devil plant before they were taken off the market because they were giving people botulism SP?) so beware that you can develop an alergy to it if you get into it often enough.
The shot worked awesome. I'd take them again if I could them. I'm just starting to get the stuff again after 11 years. SIGH. It's on my belly and thighs right now.”
“HOI is right. I never got it until I was about 30. I used to be able to roll in it without any reaction. I was always the one who volunteered to pull it up because I was 'immune'. I got my first case after clearing my neighbor's bank. A doctor forewarned me but I didnít heed his advice to avoid exposure. I've gotten it a couple of times since then and now steer clear of it.”
“Wha? Nobody likes my other idea? Well, I guess an ugly itching rash is no laughing matter. :-(”
“Briar, dude you have my sympathies big time. As Sass said I am still getting more ivy bumps and its been two weeks plus since my exposure. The cortisone helps, but man the shot was awful I almost threw up it hit me so hard. Try the "ivarest" its great stuff, best I have tried and I get a minimum of 2 yearly cases of ivy and have for the past 20 plus years. Its a big downer for sure!”
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