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Summer Health Risks: Poison Ivy, Sumac & Oak

Summer is finally in full swing! With warm weather, many people crave spending time outdoors – whether tending to the garden, grilling in the backyard, playing in the park, or sunbathing on the beach. Nevertheless, a simple brush with nature can lead to a red, itchy, swollen rash from poison ivy, poison sumac, and poison oak. Containing oil named Urushiol, these plants cause skin irritation in as little as 12 hours after contact. Though rare, severe reactions like the following require immediate medical attention:

  • Blistering
  • Broken & crusting skin
  • Fever
  • Severe swelling
  • Difficulty breathing, swallowing, moving, or talking

Mild rashes usually clear in a few weeks on their own but, the uncontrollable itching, swelling, and redness that comes with skin irritation can be close to unbearable. Here are a few tips for instant relief:

  • Take an oatmeal bath to sooth irritated skin
  • Press a cold compress directly to the affected area
  • Apply calamine or other anti-itch creams to the affected and close surrounding areas

If you have been exposed to poison ivy, oak, or sumac, visit AFC Urgent Care Urgent Care in South Plainfield, NJ for relief from your suffering. We make it easy for you to walk in and receive personalized care from a board-certified physician without an appointment.  We also accept most insurance plans and offer low self-pay rates for uninsured patients. For more information, visit us at our conveniently located urgent care center at 907 Oak Tree Ave, Oak Park Commons in South Plainfield, NJ.