The infamous, extremely itchy rash that is caused by touching poison oak or poison ivy is a type of dermatitis that calls for special aromatherapy care. Use a vinegar base, as oil-based products aren’t usually recommended in the first stages. However, some people find that a lotion relieves the later dry stage.
Choose essential oils that slow the inflammation and ease the itching. Peppermint may seem an unlikely essential oil to use, but the menthol it contains relieves the painful burning and itching that accompany the rash.
If you can, first soak the affected area in a tepid oatmeal bath such as the one suggested below. Then apply the remedy that follows. Some people find that even warm water is irritating, so experiment with water temperature to find what works best for you.
Essential oils for poison oak/ivy/sumac: chamomile, cypress, geranium, lavender, peppermint
To learn more about Aromatherapy and other alternative medicines, see:
- Aromatherapy: Here you will learn about aromatherapy, how it works, what part essential oils play, and how to use aromatherapy.
- Essential Oils Profiles: We have collected profiles of dozens of plants that are used to produce essential oils. On these pages, you will learn the properties and preparations for the most popular essential oils.
- How to Treat Common Conditions With Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy can be used to treat a number of conditions, from asthma to depression to skin problems. Here you will learn how to treat some common medical problems with aromatherapy.
- Home Remedies: We have gathered over a hundred safe, time-tested home remedies for treating a wide variety of medical complaints yourself.
- Herbal Remedies: Herbal remedies and aromatherapy can be very similar, and they stem from similar historic roots. On this page, you will find all of our herb profiles and instructions for treating medical problems with herbal remedies.
Kathi Keville is director of the American Herb Association and editor of the American Herb Association Quarterly newsletter. A writer, photographer, consultant, and teacher specializing in aromatherapy and herbs for over 25 years, she has written several books, including Aromatherapy: The Complete Guide to the Healing Art and Pocket Guide to Aromatherapy, and has written over 150 articles for such magazines as New Age Journal, The Herb Companion, and New Herbal Remedies.This information is solely for informational purposes. IT IS NOT INTENDED TO PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. Neither the Editors of Consumer Guide (R), Publications International, Ltd., the author nor publisher take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading or following the information contained in this information. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Before undertaking any course of treatment, the reader must seek the advice of their physician or other health care provider.