Poison Ivy
Natural Remedies

9 Natural Poison Ivy Remedies

Homeopathic Prevention

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Ncdorothy (Snow Camp, Nc) on 04/15/2017

As I sit here with a nasty outbreak of poison ivy looking for relief, I am kicking myself for not "curing" this years ago. I know this is possible because my husband has gotten only a few very mild cases in the last six years since he took a 6-week course of homeopathic poison ivy remedy. He took 10-15 drops in a few ounces of water every evening before bed. This was in the early spring and during a time when he did not have an active rash. Prior to this, he had at least 5-6 severe outbreaks every year. They happened in the summer when he worked outside. They happened in the winter when he wasn't outside. They always lasted at least a week and covered his forearms, chest and back. He had been like this since childhood only they were worse then -- in his eyes, ears and groin at times. His mom tried everything over the counter, steroid shots, even a new poison ivy "vaccine" which was a disaster leading to a head to toe rash. Anyway to go from such severe reactions to a few mild case is absolutely amazing. I'm kicking myself saying why have I not just done it?! Hope this helps someone out there!

Replied by Robert Henry
(Ten Mile, Tn)

HI U NCDORTHY,,,,,,,,, as all know I's slow, but your post went over my head. What was in those drops? For some reason, your post made no sense. I have a feeling that the drops contained the poison ivy juice itself. Maybe not, but the last time I posted about eating tender poison ivy leaves to get immune from poison ivy, I got beat about the head and shoulders severely.

I think you will help all by explaining this situation a little better, otherwise, I still say eat tender poison ivy leaves for immunity.

Your buddy===ORH======

Hot Water

7 User Reviews
5 star (6) 
4 star (1) 

Posted by Michele (Chicago, IL) on 06/20/2019

I am completely amazed that hot water relieved my poison ivy! Thank you earth clinic peeps! If I just glance sideways at poison ivy I will break out, so recently I had it on my hands and forearms, I pulled up my Dr. Earth Clinic and went searching. When I read about the hot water remedy I thought “what have I got to loose”? I ran the faucet over my arms and hands, hot as I could, being careful not to burn myself and believe me - they itch to high heaven when this is going on but then it slowly dissipates. Afterward they did not itch for over 8 hours! I promptly did it again and it was almost 16 hours this time. Each time the effect lasted longer, I'd say all total I might have done it 7 times. my skin is rather dry and flaky but that's a small price to pay for relief!

Hot Water
Posted by Celad (Kearney, Nebraska, Usa) on 12/01/2009

I don't remember exactly under which ailment I first found it, but the spoon heated with hot water to stop itching for several hours is great. I needed it for multiple (maybe hobo) spider bites that were driving me crazy. As I recall there was something about the heat driving histamines away.

Therefore it also works for poison ivy, oak and sumac. There was a very helpful comment about the urushiol being the active agent and once that is washed off (of everything!) the clear fluid from the blisters is not an irritant. Thankfully I just got a very mild case (through a hole in a jersey glove I think) between my middle and ring fingers on one hand. I just ran a trickle of hot tap water over it as long as I could stand it a few times (maybe I only needed to do it once ;-) and that was way hot enough to assuage the itch, again for several hours.

Getting a child to bear the heat for even a short duration is another topic!

Thank you, Earth Clinic!!

Replied by Big T From Kc
(Independence, Mo)

You are correct in your assumption. Oddly enough, I got the info straight from a physician, which you would think would try to prescribe some medication to help fund the medical establishment. This is how it was described to me and the reasoning behind why this works. Get the water as hot as you can stand, without burning yourself. (I have a higher tolerance of pain and have burned myself in the past, but over time, worked out the perfect temp. ) What the hot water does, is releases the histamines in that area of your body, that is being treated. Our body has an allergic reaction to the ivy. With allergies, what do we take? Anti-histamines. So, with the hot water releasing these histamines, that cause the allergic reaction, there is nothing there to cause the itch. I was told that it can take your body, on average, 4-8 hours to replenish the histamines in the applied area, so it depends on the person I suppose. My own personal experience, I get relief from the itching for about 8 hours. When it starts to flare up again, another hot water treatment. Another interesting thing occurs too. The use of the hot water tends to dry out the affected area as well, thus the reaction to the ivy only lasts 3-4 days and it's gone. The drawback to it though, is now you've got dry skin for a few days. I don't experience that too often, but it does happen on occasion and really isn't a big deal to me. But, you could use lotion if you were so inclined. What used to be an 8-10 day irritation, aside from the frustration of trying every over-the-counter method to no avail, is now completely gone within a 3-4 day period. Plus, water is much cheaper than anything else you purchase. I used to hate mowing the grass or working in the yard, due to the ivy that grew along my fence. Now, I go at it with wreckless abandon, not worrying about the ill effects of the reaction, because I've found the perfect way to take care of the problem. IT WORKS! Besides that, what have you got to lose, water is basically free.

Replied by Mountanpalm
(Boone, Nc. Watauga, Usa)

So happy to find another living being that is on the same page as I am. Found this "hot as you can stand" remedy on the internet ten yrs. ago..... I stand by it today. I must have a high tolerance....... As people flinch when I explain the process....... I no longer do the "bathtub'.... Instead the shower...... Which you can regulate better when you get to the point of "intolerance" and move out of the way alot faster..... I get the same sensation as a good "scratch of the itch"..... With the hot water..... And revel in it. (sick, I know, but "ahhhhhh") But it works...... Lasts for 6-8 hours... Itch free for 8 hours........ I'll take it anyday. NOTHING over the counter works this good... I also use calamine to quicken the drying process...... Thanks for your comments!! [I am suffering from a terrible case as I write this......... But there is light.... at the end of this tunnel.]

Replied by Jim
(Cabrera, Dominican Republic)

This is a great description of how to use the HOT water method. It works for me and takes away the itch instantly for long periods of time.

Hot Water
Posted by Sarah (Northampton, Massachussetts) on 08/11/2008

Hot water really works for poison ivy! I turned the water up almost all the way, and ran it over my arm, where the poison ivy is. It did burn a little bit of course, but now there is absolutely no itch! I am also rubbing baking soda with white vinegar in it to get rid of the actual rash.

Hot Water
Posted by Alan (Toronto, Canada) on 03/27/2007

I have had poison ivy numerous times, and while I have not found anything to cure it there is a very quick and easy way to relieve the itching for up to an hour or two at a time: hot water. If you take the infected area and hold it under VERY hot water (in a shower for example), you will get an immediate sensation of relief. I put the water as hot as I can stand it (being very careful not to burn your skin... it sounds strange but it's easy to do because even burning temperatures offer the same relief). When you're done the itch will be gone for about an hour or two at a time. If you're really getting so you can't stand the itch - try it. for the worst exposures I've had 4-5 very hot showers daily and it really makes the itch far more bearable. Again, be very careful not to burn the skin or you'll take even longer to heal.

How to Develop Poison Ivy Immunity

Posted by Robert Henry (Ten Mile, Tn.) on 05/01/2017

GOOD PEOPLE, especially Mama, I guess it's time I put my boast to the test. Our integrative doctor uses homeopathic drops to address almost all of the ails he finds with his DNA test. Vaccines work on the same principle except most have added toxins and is the reason we no longer get vaccines of any kind.

Here is the plan; we have lots of young tender poison ivy coming up at our little farm. I will gather a batch, soak them in gin for a period of time, and then devise a slow method of ingesting a few drops a day in water. First, I will rub the plant on my arm and show all that I am allergic to poison ivy. At the end of the summer, I will repeat my arm rub and see if the experiment worked or did not work.

The guy told me to chew young tender leaves because they have less of the chemical that causes the allergy than mature leaves. That sounds right to me. Some on EC have told me to work on my known ails instead of this hair brained scheme. Folks, that what keeps me perkin. I need a constant challenge.

Wish me well. ======ORH=======

EC: Here's a long thread on the subject that starts in 2008... https://bushcraftusa.com/forum/threads/eating-poison-ivy-to-gain-immunity.1222/

Replied by Robert Henry
(Ten Mile, Tn.)

EC, your reference was to another site and it was revealing. It is truly great and I have experienced some of what was written. Yep, burning poison ivy is the very worst thing you can do. Also, myself I have gone through periods when I was immune and periods that I was not. That works for cancer for certain. I have no clue why some people are immune and others are not.

The worst case I ever got was when I was a counselor at a Boy Scout camp and we had a long rope swing. My hands slipped and I was drug on my stomach through a patch of poison ivy. My stomach turned to two inches of poison ivy blisters. My life was miserable for quit awhile. Yep, I understand what my experiment entails.

The thing that I'm wanting to prove is that you can control your problems with intelligence. Homeopathic's work and that is a given. So if my experiment allows someone to experience the out of doors without pain. Then the Lord will give me another star. With my background, I need all I can get.


Replied by Mama To Many

Dear Robert Henry,

Well I will watch your poison ivy experiment with interest. I like to experiment on myself as well.

I think the current state of our immunity is what makes us more or less prone to reactions to poison ivy. A friend used to work for a lawn service. His poison ivy immunity was strong and he was the man called up to deal with the poison ivy. Well, he had back surgery and was down for a good while, likely on a lot of meds. After that, he was no longer immune to poison ivy. A son of mine used to get it badly regularly. His general health is much better now. I found out he was recently "swimming in poison ivy" doing some work last week, to my horror, but I don't think he has had any reaction.

It is the time of year that I give much thought to poison ivy. A couple of days ago I wore disposable rubber gloves to pull up and bag the new poison ivy plants closest to my house where children play. Getting it out by the roots is the best.

I know you will keep us posted on your progress and results!

~Mama to Many~

Replied by Timh
2063 posts

-ORH- Mamas post is a good example of how general health condition and injury can cause the domino effect of all sorts of potential or outright illnesses that are otherwise absent in very healthy people.

If an injury doesn't heal on it's own then you have a permanent inflammatory condition. I broken bone, for example, could heal quickly in a young & healthy person but over 50 with other issues and could likely never completely heal. My condition is so severe that I must use Magnet Therapy almost all the time, as this effectively removes both infection & inflammation. So do a very strong magnet locally on any old or recent injury.

Next is the whole body reduction of inflammation. Eat Pineapple or P juice daily, and Salmon, Mackerel or Sardines regularly, as well as Flax, Borage, and Primrose Oils. Also lots of Turmeric Root.

If one's injuries and health are not-to-bad this may resolve the situation but likely and in your case you will also need to attack those inflammatory cytokines and other bad chemistry like the COX 2 enzyme. Big Pharma makes billions on Rx and OTC meds like Tylenol, Ibuprofen, Claritan, etc. The Homeopathic you mention is designed to do the for-mentioned. Also in the natural dept is Quercetin/Bromilain which reduces inflammation. An herbal formula called "PainRx" is a good COX2 inhibitor. You may also try a small dose of OTC Claritan or equivalent to knock out the bad guys. I think there are other good pharma drugs similar to Claritan so maybe search or ask a Pharmacist.

Next is to further build immunity and antibody production. You must have an adequate amount of Zinc daily. A standardized extract of Reishi, Maitaki, and Shiitaki is good. One capsule of Raw Bovine Glandular daily.

To further build antibody production take 1grm Lysine and 125mg DMG daily. Bee Pollen (1 or 2 spoons daily) is also good for building antibody production, which reduces the inflammatory condition or reaction like in the case of Poison Ivy. Your cancer numbers should also drop.

Replied by Robert Henry
(Ten Mile, Tn.)

HI U Timh, my Ky neighbor. I always listen to your counsel, and will copy your post for direction. My back situation is improving drastically with a number of things I'm doing. The problem is that I'm running my health program just like I ran a Pulp Mill. I do so many things that most times I have no clue what solved the problem. But I always solved the problem.

This deal where Integrative Doctors are taking your blood, centrifuging it to get only the platelets is the coming thing. I think you need to research this and see if it can help your situation. Hollywood is going ape over the use of blood plates to take decades off their face and the sex folks think this beats the heck out of Viagra for both men and women. I would not go that route as old men don't need sex that is too strong. It's a heart thing.

The Prolozone shot I got that had my blood platelets in it has got me doing work in the garden that my HS football player had to do. He is not available to work because of the demands that he do the required workouts.

I am also using the Hi Dollar PEMF device that can address almost as many ailments as my Rife Machine and does require lots of brain power. Growing black radish again this year.

Timh, thanks for helping folks that just want the easy way out. They frustrate me, but not you. You work with them and I tell them to just please read what is in EC's archives. Their answer has been there for some 20 years.

Out of spit. ======ORH======

Replied by Timh
2063 posts

For all you've been doing to recover your health looks like it's beginning to really happen, so hurray! I forgot to mention Histamine in the first post as one of the bad chems produced in the inflammatory condition, so any antihistamine natural or pharma would be worth the trial. Pseudoephedrine was once the big otc antihistamine but the meth freaks have caused a big disturbance in it's sale because it is the main ingredient in the clandestine production of methamphetamine. Big pharma has created another chemical antihistamine to replace the problem one that can't be used as a precursor to meth. So, reduction of Histamine 1 and COX 2 is what you want. Lots of awareness of the potential in ant inflammatory diets across the world lately as this approach reduces many illnesses in itself.

I'll skip on the platelets frenzy on two counts. It is rumored that george sorros takes regular blood transfusions from young children or possibly aborted babies so??? As for healthy skin there are a number of good natural ways to achieve. Carnasine is the best. Check out Jon Barron as he's the expert on it as well as many other health & nutrition topics. He has lot's of info and excellent products (Baseline I think). I take Raw Bovine Bone Marrow regularly to keep my blood up. GABA and Ornithine are my favs for boosting HGH/IGF. I recently started D Aspartic Acid for the Testosterone boosting and getting good results. Yes, the very hormones that can take one right outa the sick-bed can immediately place you in the sex-bed, which is another situation that must be under control. But the longevity experts agree that boosting both the HGH & Test. together make for way better results.

My recovery is so difficult that it's always impossible to know the outcome. I have so many major problems and it's way to much suffering for anyone to endure. I take the smart & aggressive method and like Bill Belichick coaching football, identify & correct every mistake big or small.

How to Develop Poison Ivy Immunity
Posted by Rebel (Somewhere Usa) on 05/08/2014

I have been seeing all the post about Poison Ivy and had to rack my brain to find the website that has some info on it. This website has all kinds of information on all kinds of wild plants and a video on Poison Ivy consumption to become immune to breaking out with the stuff.


then click on News Blog and find video on poison ivy.

Hydrogen Peroxide and Aloe

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Keira W (Placerville, CA) on 11/25/2008

We live in a wooded area and no matter how often we point out the poison oak to my son he keeps getting it. He gets it so badly on his face that his eyes almost swell shut and his face swells up. Last night he said he was getting it again and sure enough his face was getting red and swollen. I came on to Earth Clinic's website because I always find great remedies. I read over the ideas and we decided to try the 3%hydrogen peroxide and freash aloe vera. I put some hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ball and gently patted it all over the poison oak (avoiding the eyes, eyebrows and hair-it will bleach hair). Then without rinsing it off we applied fresh aloe vera gel from my aloe plant. This morning I could not believe my eyes, the poison oak rash was completely gone! We have never had anything work like this. Thank You Earth Clinic!


2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Cheryl (Highland Park, NJ) on 05/27/2023 10 posts

As a child I was highly susceptible to poison ivy. Even a breeze from a patch would get my little skin itching. So I was immunized by taking a series of poison ivy drops - the old natural way, no chemicals. This immunization seemed to last for about 20 years with no recurrences of p.i.

Then, in my late 20s while staying at a summer cabin in the woods, I came back from a walk one day to feel an itchy patch on my leg. Uh oh. So I quick went into the shower to wash off any oil before it got spread any farther.

The warm water felt so good, that I increased the heat and focused the water jet on that part of my leg for several seconds. Ahhh. Since that worked, I increased the heat some more. Ohhh, ahhh, even better. It felt like I was scratching it without scratching it.

I got the temp as hot as I could stand it, when the thought entered my head to blast it with cold. So I did. I let the icy cold water run on it for several seconds. Feeling relief and no more itching, I dried off, got dressed and went about the rest of the day.

A good 12 hours passed before I felt a little itching starting up again. So I did the warm-hot-hot water followed by a cold blast again. Another 12 hours without itching. This is great! Even better, I noticed that the patch that had been reddish was turning brownish.

It may have flared up slightly one or two more times before it totally disappeared as a brownish color in the skin, but it never spread and it never itched again. It just kind of faded away.

Of course, you would want to do this water therapy with a cloth if the rash is on your face or neck; but anywhere else on the body, with the shower head pointing at the spot, heat will do the trick. The best part? It only takes a few minutes and - it's free!

Posted by Mama To Many (Tn) on 11/07/2018

My son has poison ivy on his hands. This morning the poison ivy had caused enough swelling that he was not able to make a fist. This was going to make work today difficult. I suggested hydrotherapy.

He put cold water in half of our double sink and warm/hot water in the other half. He set a timer for 7 minutes and alternated hot and cold, beginning and ending with cool. It brought relief to the itching and to the swelling.

He is now able to make a fist and and can go to work. (He needs to be able to hold hand tools.)

If poison ivy is over a large part of the body, hydrotherapy can be done in the shower alternating warm and cool. Of course if poison ivy is over a large part of the body, medical attention may be needed as well. It can get out of control and become systemic, and even cause fever.

~Mama to Many~

Ice Water

3 User Reviews
5 star (3) 

Posted by Garret (Westpoint, TN) on 03/28/2021

This is the only thing that worked me. I was not able to put my arm in ice water for a full 2 minutes, I felt my arm about to pop off after 30 seconds, so I just did the dunk multiple times and this Ice water trick worked beautifully.

After 2 or 3 days the poison Ivy was gone. Thank you so much for sharing this.

Ice Water
Posted by William (Texas) on 02/12/2019

I have had poison ivy many times in my life!! My "go to" remedy is ALWAYS "ICE WATER". Why? Because it is instantaneous relief from misery. 100% relief in a split second! Just leave your hand, arm, feet,... in the icy water for about one minute or two full minutes.

The relief is immediate and lasts for two to ten hours (depending upon how severe your poison ivy reaction is). Repeat as many times the first day as needed. The second day you won't need many.

By the third day you are almost home. WHY does it work? Heat is a catalyst for ALL biological reactions. Heat speeds up biological reactions. Heat is required for all biological reactions including poison ivy. When you put your hand/arm in ice water (approx. 33 deg F), the ice draws the HEAT out of the area with poison ivy. Essentially, shutting the poison ivy reaction down and giving your skin time to heal. HOW I do it: Just say I have a poison ivy outbreak on my forearm. I take a large ice chest. Fill it with water up to about 4 inches from the top. Then put in a full bag of ice. Maybe two bags. S

wish the ice around with your hand. If all the ice melts, then you should add another bag. When ready, I just submerge my entire forearm into the ice water. I like to leave my arm in the ice water for at least a full minute. Two full minutes is better. I had a friend who once had poison ivy on almost all areas of his body. He took quick baths in the bath tub in ice water. It worked and in 3 days he was done. That's it. Works 100% of the time. William Note that heat is a catalyst for chemical, bacterial, and biological reactions.

Replied by Katydid

Thank you for the ice water suggestion! I've tried many things for poison ivy and this is now my absolute favorite. Nothing else has stopped the itch immediately. THANK YOU! Side note; no way would I be able to stand ice water for two minutes. So that probably should vary person to person. For me somewhere around 45 seconds to a minute was good enough to keep the itch at bay for a few hours. And the swelling went down and has stayed down.

Ionic Zinc

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Suzy (Indiana) on 09/07/2019

Last summer I had a long and nasty outbreak of poison ivy.

This past July I got it again though in 66 years I've only had it twice. Looking for relief, I remembered zinc in pill form clears up my granddaughter's eczema. I had a bottle of ionic zinc and knowing it is good for skin I decided to see if it would offer some relief from the blistering and itch. Ionic zinc is a liquid. Mine came in a blue bottle with a dropper. I put a bit on every tingle, pimple and start of an outbreak.

I immediately had what felt like an electrical charge or tiny pin pricks. It was a bit overwhelming at first and I wondered if it was a very smart idea but the sensation eased and in a short time blisters appeared. Poison ivy takes days to blister and you aren't on your way to healing until your skin is a full blown mess. What got me to apply the ionic zinc again that evening was the fact that once I applied the zinc the itching stopped.

I applied it morning and night, a small amount. It is like water with a bit of oil, you need to shake the bottle and pump the dropper so you have the mixed ionic zinc in the dropper. I don't know the science behind it but I know it worked. If you've had poison ivy you know how long it takes to surface, blister, weep and finally start to go away. The ionic zinc got rid of all of it within a week, full cycle, start to finish. It surfaced, dried up and went away with no itch.

The only side effect I experienced was that the skin on my arms, after the poison ivy healed, was wrinkly and very dry.

I probably could have been more careful applying the zinc only to the poison ivy, maybe have used a q-tip. I put coconut oil on the dry patches and used a soft skin brush when I bathed. After a few days my skin was back to normal. Ionic zinc worked for me. Last year it took me three weeks to just get feeling ok with the poison ivy starting to clear.

I'm hoping this might help someone else get relief. Take care and stay smart.


10 User Reviews
5 star (10) 

Posted by Steve (Germantown, OH) on 06/06/2023

I had a really bad case of poison ivy. I looked at Earth-Clinic for remedies and read that people had success with Jewelweed. I had never heard of it before. I ordered some and it is truly amazing. I put it directly on the rash 2-3 times a day. I notices some improvement the next day and every day thereafter. The itch was greatly reduced first then the rash started drying up and going away. By day 3 there was noticeable improvement.

Posted by Mama To Many (Tennessee) on 08/31/2018

My son wanted to try some jewelweed for some poison ivy on his face. I pulled up a couple of plants worth and chopped them up and put them in a large basin. I added about a half gallon of hot water. When it was cool I had him splash some of the "jewelweed tea" onto his face every couple of hours. He found it to be really helpful and his face was pretty cleared up the next day.

At the end of the day, I strained out the plant material and took the remaining orange jewelweed tea and froze it in ice cube trays. These ice cubes are now in the freezer, ready for the next need. Cold is usually soothing for poison ivy, anyway.

Most herbalists agree that jewelweed should NOT be used internally.

~Mama to Many~

1 2 3 4 5 6 7