How to identify poison ivy
Poison ivy is a plague for many, but not for everyone. While an unpleasant and irritating result after touching something like poison ivy, poison ivy, or even poison ivy has been pierced in the minds of many, it is actually a misconception. All of these plants contain a type of oil, urushiol, to which many people have an allergic reaction. However, not everyone reacts to the plant.
If you already know you’re allergic, you’ll rightly want to stay away from the plant, and if you’re not sure, you probably shouldn’t risk it. That is why it is very important to know what poison ivy looks like in all seasons so that you can stay away from all parts of the plant, from the root to the leaves.
What Poison Ivy looks like
When poison ivy first arrives in the spring, it is accompanied by a bright red warning sign. The leaves, which usually grow in clusters of three, are bright red in color. Usually there will also be some green under the leaves, either in the stems or in the tiny flower buds that turn white as they grow and flower. By the time summer arrives, the leaves will be completely green and can get quite large. The leaves can also have deep ridges along their edges depending on where you live, to camouflage themselves like other plants. So never forget to count the leaf clusters if you see a questionable plant.
When autumn arrives, the leaves change color again. This time, they could be orange, yellow, red, or a combination of these colors. In winter, the leaves turn red again before dying and dropping from the roots. If nothing other than the roots are visible, it will look like a light brown hairy vine. So if you are outdoors, just walk away from the plant if it turns out that way during any of these seasons.
Look high for Poison Ivy
Poison ivy can also grow like a vine and take over trees, structures, and more, so be sure to treat it safely if it grows on your home or somewhere in your backyard. Although you are less likely to touch poison ivy that grows above your head, you may be able to eliminate it by cutting and burning it. It is imperative that you do not burn poison ivy to kill it or get rid of the plant.
When poison ivy is burned, oil is released into the air. There, the oil can be inhaled and cause an internal reaction. If this happens, it usually causes difficulty breathing and may even require a trip to the hospital. Excessive symptoms on the skin may also require a visit to the doctor if they affect sensitive areas, cover a large area of your body, or open with oozing pus.
How to protect yourself
Most reactions to poison ivy are simply a red rash, itching, blistering, or swelling and can last for two to three weeks. It usually takes 12 hours to two days for symptoms to develop, and the extent to which they appear depends on how much oil you’ve been exposed to. To prevent this from happening, there are things you can do in addition to identifying and staying away from plants.
Wear clothing that fully covers your skin, such as long-sleeved shirts and long pants, in areas where there might be poison ivy plants. If you know that you or your pets have been exposed to the oil, you can wash yourself with soap and water for up to an hour after exposure to minimize the effects. Finally, you can also use a barrier cream similar to a liquid bandage to help protect your skin from interactions with the oil. So try these preventative methods to avoid an uncomfortable outbreak.