WHAT IS MAKING ME ITCH? ~ Scratching the Itch Naturally
You know “itch” is caused often by allergic reaction and sometimes by various chemicals that set off a reaction. For instance, various kinds of bits from insects, various kinds of plants that cause allergic contact dermatitis, like poison ivy. When you have itching, it’s a sign that something is going on that needs to be remedied or avoided. It’s really important to think back about what is going on when the itching started and what was going on a few days before the itching began in case it was something you contacted with and set it off with a delayed response.
Finding out the cause of an inch is a detective game that you are the deputy detective here and you need to start looking back at what was going on and put that information together so you can present it to your doctor or your dermatologist. Now, if this is been a complex long-term problem, it can take some real serious detective work. This is when digging in deeper to the causes can make a real difference. This is where real holistic dermatology begins.
“Leaves of three, let them be.” If you find yourself out walking as the weather gets warmer, be sure to step out of the way of any plants with clumps of three leaves. Poison ivy can have many different appearances.
The best way to tell if it’s poison ivy is the number of leaves, the reddish color at the point the three stems meet, and the shape of the edge of the leaves. If you are working in the garden or on the lawn pulling up “runners” before the leaves are fully formed, be
sure to wear extra thick gloves, and know the plants in your yard. Some of these runners may be poison ivy, and you may find out the hard way 2 days later.
Remember that the active ingredient, the urishiol, can last on shoes, clothing, garden tools and gloves almost indefinitely (some poison ivy oil has even been found in Egyptian tombs!) Some of the “spreading” of poison ivy is actually caused by contacting smaller amounts of poison ivy from garden items, pets, and furniture, once your sensitivity has been elevated by a big skin reaction to poison ivy.
So always wash off anything coming in contact with poison ivy immediately with detergent and hot water. Holistic
dermatology advocates many treatments for skin disorders, including the best one: prevention.