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Old 07-08-11, 07:29 AM   #1
toobusi
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Poison Ivy

Ok, my last two times out, (Greenbelt, L.I., N.Y.) i came home with poison ivy on my shins and ankles. Yes, many areas the track is very narrow with thick vegetation.

Would love to hear other poison ivy stories and solutions.

Eric
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Old 07-08-11, 08:03 AM   #2
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Last year I got a dose of something - poison ivy/oak/sumac, one of those - anyway, bad. I'm used to chigger bites and such and usually just tough it out, but this was extra nasty. I woke up in the middle of the night ready to tear my skin off, and the kind of stuff that was handy (alcohol, calamine lotion, etc.) didn't even give momentary relief. So out of sheer desperation I grabbed a bottle of generic kitchen/bathroom cleaner - the kind with bleach in it (at this point I was ready to use a flame thrower if necessary) - sprayed some of that on and rubbed it in.... and slept like a baby for the rest of the night. I repeated this roughly once a day for the duration of the outbreak with minimal symptoms.
Ok, this is just my little story, I'm NOT recommending this as a remedy, but if you are unable or unwilling (read: too cheap) to go to the drugstore for the ~$30 stuff, well... YMMV.

Last edited by scyclops; 07-08-11 at 08:06 AM.
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Old 07-08-11, 08:03 AM   #3
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A quick and easy solution is to keep your legs covered. That's about the best advice I can give. While you may still get some, it should greatly reduce the irritation.
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Old 07-08-11, 08:17 AM   #4
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A quick and easy solution is to keep your legs covered.
That's true, but I can't imagine riding in 90+ degree heat in anything but shorts.
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Old 07-08-11, 08:31 AM   #5
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Yeah, I've been thinking about wearing my lightest tights, what's worse 3 hours of heat or itching for two weeks. And will those thin tights really stop the P.I.
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Old 07-08-11, 08:33 AM   #6
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You get used to it. I used to skate in 100+ weather in jeans.
The heat and sweat was better than rashing up your legs. Sometimes, you have to deal with the lesser of two evils.
I think personally that I'd rather come prepared to keep myself hydrated to compensate for the additional sweating than to deal with poison ivy.
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Old 07-08-11, 08:51 AM   #7
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...what's worse 3 hours of heat or itching for two weeks.
Fortunately for me, where I mostly ride, it's a fairly rare event. So my equation looks more like this: what's worse, 300 hours of heat or itching for two weeks.
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Old 07-08-11, 09:00 AM   #8
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I feel for people that get it, and a lot of places here in ATX where people ride have it. For some reason it has no effect on me.
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Old 07-08-11, 09:06 AM   #9
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From what I understand, about 1/3rd of the population are not effected by the oils in Poison Ivy, oak or sumac.
But for those who are each exposure can become more severe than prior ones.
Lucky me.
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Old 07-08-11, 09:19 AM   #10
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I always use rubbing alcohol after I think I have come into contact with poison ivy. I liberally pour rubbing alcohol on the exposed areas rubbing it a bit with my hands to get the oils off, and then wash really well with soap and water afterwards.
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Old 07-08-11, 09:24 AM   #11
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I've tried that on my last case of poison ivy, and it just aggravated it.
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Old 07-08-11, 09:29 AM   #12
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Long clothing is the best protection from Ivy and the sun - Remember that Baking Soda is an organic buffer - That is it will neutralize an acid or a base and also poison ivy and bull nettle toxins - Dry or wet...

I remember one of my young scouts on a hike telling another "Look..., just don't touch anything green"... Ha...
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Old 07-08-11, 09:51 AM   #13
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I hate poison ivy. I am so allergic that if I get some, nothing short of going to the doctor for a shot will work for me. The last 2 times I have had it, my arm and leg looked and oozed so bad I had to wrap them like a mummy. After every ride I make sure I don't scratch anything until I have made it home and showered really well because I am terrified of possibly spreading it if I got it.
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Old 07-08-11, 10:02 AM   #14
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I've tried that on my last case of poison ivy, and it just aggravated it.

LOL you have to do it ASAP after potential contact. You can't wait until the rash forms..by then the oil has already caused the reaction.
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Old 07-08-11, 10:15 AM   #15
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I've said it before on BF and I'll say it again: "Tecnu" The label used to say that it can be used as a barrier during activity, but now just says to use it after exposure, but before the rash starts. I'm very allergic to poison ivy and the ilk, but this stuff has saved me. I used to have to take steroids because it would get so bad, but I haven't gotten a bad rash since I've started using it.

My dad volunteers for the National Park Service doing trail maintenance and building. They buy it by the gallon for the rangers and volunteers.

You can probably wash off at the trailhead. Take the Tecnu with a gallon of water, and wash your legs and ankles right there. Once you get back home or to camp, you can do a better cleaning job to make sure you got it all.

I think most drugstores sell the stuff. Hope it helps.
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Old 07-08-11, 10:53 AM   #16
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take a Reactin(allergy med) prior to riding. Works wonders. If you get poison ivy, take reactin everyday till it's gone. It suppresses the allergic response and thus makes the ivy ineffectual at itchiness.
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Old 07-08-11, 11:25 AM   #17
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Lace a joint with it. Increase your resistance.
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Old 07-08-11, 12:00 PM   #18
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Lace a joint with it. Increase your resistance.
Not sure about the efficacy of that method exactly, but for a couple years when I had regular PI exposure due to work, I used a product called Oral Ivy with great success. It's a homeopathic remedy - basically urishiol oil extract taken orally over time to build a tolerance. Think iocane powder. Anyway, it is super effective and I highly recommend it.

When symptoms of exposure have already appeared, I find relief through treatment with hot hot water (as hot as you can stand it). The heat releases histamines, which make you itch like crazy, but after a few minutes your stores of histamines are depleted and it'll buy you 4-6 hours of relief until they replenish.
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Old 07-08-11, 12:01 PM   #19
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I've said it before on BF and I'll say it again: "Tecnu"I think most drugstores sell the stuff. Hope it helps.
Its worked for me as well, on the similar posion oak, I found mine at REI, drug stores may be a bit cheaper
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Old 07-08-11, 12:26 PM   #20
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If you notice the signs of poison ivy first order of business it to use soap/water to remove any oil that is still there.
Wash the clothes- by themselves in a sink- very well also.
Best otc stuff is any topical steroid-slather it on.
Folks with really severe reactions can be treated with systemic corticosteroids.
They keep hoping it will get better so they put off going to their MD-it can takes weeks to get better without treatment.
Miserable weed!! Best bet-Bath and wash well after walking/riding in "weeds."
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Old 07-08-11, 12:29 PM   #21
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Lace a joint with it. Increase your resistance.
That will actually kill you.
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Old 07-08-11, 01:15 PM   #22
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Last year I got a dose of something - poison ivy/oak/sumac, one of those - anyway, bad. I'm used to chigger bites and such and usually just tough it out, but this was extra nasty. I woke up in the middle of the night ready to tear my skin off, and the kind of stuff that was handy (alcohol, calamine lotion, etc.) didn't even give momentary relief. So out of sheer desperation I grabbed a bottle of generic kitchen/bathroom cleaner - the kind with bleach in it (at this point I was ready to use a flame thrower if necessary) - sprayed some of that on and rubbed it in.... and slept like a baby for the rest of the night. I repeated this roughly once a day for the duration of the outbreak with minimal symptoms.
Ok, this is just my little story, I'm NOT recommending this as a remedy, but if you are unable or unwilling (read: too cheap) to go to the drugstore for the ~$30 stuff, well... YMMV.
I know they say not to, but I have put bleach on the rash and it takes the itch away right now. I don't know what the adverse affects could be but I don't remember having any. Not saying that I recommend this.

Best thing is learn - from a book - what it looks like and avoid it. I say learn from a book because there is a lot of mis-information out there about poison ivy.
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Old 07-08-11, 02:41 PM   #23
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That will actually kill you.
Indeed. I've had buddies unknowingly burn a bonfire with some of the stuff in it. The allergic ones were hospitalized approximately 3 weeks.
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Old 07-08-11, 02:52 PM   #24
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Pre ride when your standing in the parking lot I use a product called Ivy Block Lotion. Its good for 4 to 5 hours of protection. When I get back to my truck I do a parking lot wipe down, baby wipes are your friend and there is a 5 gallon army jerry can of water also in the truck bed.

When you get home head right for the shower and scrub down. I use a hand made lye and beeswax soapn that is really good at taking care of it.
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Old 07-08-11, 05:20 PM   #25
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Some of the trails around here you have to ride through a literal tunnel of poison oak. During the summer months its really bad due to the leaves oozing oil. Ive found that if I apply a decent layer of sunscreen and then just make sure i take a cold shower immediately after riding it will usually prevent any type of reaction to it. I don't know if its the oil in the sunscreen acting as a buffer layer or what but i have yet to get poison oak this year and i am very very allergic. Also ive heard that from some other local riders that they will apply technu before a ride and then shower with it after words.
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