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How to Outsmart Poison Ivy

These tips can help you avoid poison ivy:

  • Learn to spot poison ivy. Find a picture of it. It can grow as a low shrub or a vine. Its leaves can be clustered in groups of three to nine, and it may have yellow or green flowers.

  • Cover up. If you need to go into areas where poison ivy grows, wear long pants, long sleeves, gloves and boots.

  • Use self-care. If you come in contact with poison ivy, wash all exposed parts of your body with cold water immediately. Wash your clothes, too. If you get a rash, try not to scratch it. To ease discomfort, take cool showers.

  • If the rash is on your face, mouth, eyes or genitals, or if you develop a fever, headache, extreme redness, pus or other symptoms that worry you, call your health care provider.