Poison Ivy-Oak Remedies

Poison Ivy-Oak-Jewel Weed

What would summer be like without the concern about coming in contact with poison ivy. Some people are so sensitive that they don't even have to touch it, to get it. Most people do have to however, and they know where the oils from the leaf came in contact with the skin, because almost immediately it begins to itch, and itch, and itch. Of course, the more you scratch it, the more intense the itch and you can't stop. Blisters soon develop and when they pop, things go from bad to much, much worse.

So, what to do? I have two very effective solutions. Where I live in the state forest, we are surrounded by lots of poison ivy/oak, but we are also blessed to have growing on our property a plant that is the antidote for both.

Jewel weed (Impatiens capensis) grows in North America. It comes up in May and expires too soon. Unfortunately, the season for this very handy plant is not as long as the season for poison ivy/oak, but that's okay, because I can liquify it in my blender and freeze it in ice cube trays. You can apply Jewel weed by simply rubbing the leaves on the affected skin the moment you come in contact with poison ivy/oak and don't wash it off for several hours. Or, you can rub a Jewel Weed ice cube on your skin as it melts, like it is a bar of soap.

Jewel Weed grows in bottomland soils, ditches, and along creeks. The flowers are orange, with a three-lobed corolla. One of the calyx lobes is colored similarly to the corolla and forms a hooked conical spur at the back of the flower. The stems are somewhat translucent, succulent and have swollen or darkened nodes. The seed pods are pendant and have projectile seeds that explode out of the pods when they are touched lightly when ripe. This plant is a traditional remedy for skin rashes.

Another source of relief comes in the form of Homeopathy. Rhus Tox is the homeopathic remedy for poison ivy. It comes in 30c. potency and is available in most health food stores.

If you have questions, email johnna@wholefamilyhealthandnutrition.com to schedule your free introductory consultation. I look forward to serving you. JVW