5 natural tips for poison ivy

Check out my upcoming post for the Ottawa Mommy Club! Great tips for kids but they all apply to adults too.

Contact with poison ivy leads to itchy, fluid filled pimples on the skin.  This blistering red rash is very unpleasant for kids.  One of the key things to teach your children is how to identify what poison ivy looks like and to obey signs that warn of poison ivy  in order to minimize their risk of contact.

If your child does come into contact with poison ivy, here are 5 natural solutions to help ease their discomfort:

1. Apply pure aloe vera gel to the skin 3 times per day.  This will have a cooling, soothing effect on the irritated skin.

2. Alternate aloe vera gel with calendula cream.  Calendula is anti-inflammatory which will help relieve redness and swelling.  Calendula is also anti-microbial and will help to prevent the spread of infection due to scratching and open blisters.

3. Boil chamomile tea, allow it to cool and add it to your child’s bath water.  Chamomile is soothing and when absorbed through the skin has calming effects which are helpful for irritable children.

4. Slice up some cucumber and store in the freezer for 10 minutes.  Apply cool cucumber slices to hot skin for a soothing effect.

5. Use the homeopathic remedy Rhus toxicodendron 30 CH.  Let 3 pellets dissolve under the tongue up to 5 times per day to relieve poison ivy symptoms.  Homeopathic Rhus tox is made from diluted poison ivy and utilizes the principle of ‘like cures like.’  Essentially you are giving the body a small, diluted amount of a substance to stimulate a healing response to the effects of the same substance at a higher toxic amount.  Homeopathic remedies are easily found at your local drug or health store.

If your child has poison ivy on their face or if they are having signs of an allergic reaction such as breathing difficulties and extreme swelling call your primary health care provider immediately.

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Natural remedies for ringworm

Sneak peak at my upcoming blog post for the Ottawa Mommy Club!

Ringworm is not actually a worm!

It is a fungal infection of the skin known as a ‘tinea’ infection, commonly contracted from close contact with others such as at day cares, swimming pools and the gym.

Tinea can occur anywhere on the body and starts off as red, raised, very itchy bumps.  Then it becomes dry and scaly as it heals from the inside out creating the appearance of a bright red ring, hence the common name ringworm.

How can you prevent a tinea infection?

1. Keep skin clean and dry.  Be sure to towel off thoroughly after a shower and to change wet, sweaty clothing as soon as you can.  Tinea thrives in dark, warm and moist environments.

2. Minimize sugar intake.  Often internal imbalance of yeast can manifest as tinea outwardly on the skin.  Sugar feeds the tinea and supports its growth.

3. Support a healthy immune system through a diet high in fruits and vegetables, ensuring your child has adequate sleep and exercise.  A strong immune system will deal with tinea exposure before it has a chance to manifest as ringworm.

Once my child has a tinea infection what can I do?

1. Avoid direct contact with others as much as possible to avoid the spread of tinea.

2. Mix 2-3 drops of tea tree essential oil into 1 tbsp of coconut or olive oil. Apply 2-3 times per day until the rash disappears and store the remainder in the fridge to use as needed.  Tea tree is anti-microbial, meaning it has the ability to kill fungus, bacteria and viruses.

3. Botanical tinctures of echinacea and goldenseal help support your child’s immune system so it can deal with the tinea infection.  Botanical tinctures are available at health food stores, be sure to use as directed based on your child’s age and weight.

4. Eat more raw garlic, raw onions and oregano.  These are natural anti-microbials and support the immune system to balance yeast levels from the inside out.

5. Incorporate omega-3 containing foods to the diet for their anti-inflammatory and skin healing properties.  Small fish such as anchovies, sardines and herring are super packed with omega-3 fatty acids.  Or you could add a tablespoon of chia seeds, hemp hearts or freshly ground flaxseeds into your child’s cereal, otameal or smoothie for a plant based omega-3 boost.

Feel free to share your experience or tips for other natural methods for resolving tinea!

Image purchased from www.dreamstime.com

Image purchased from http://www.dreamstime.com