It’s camping time again! Truthfully, even if you never find yourself near a tent this summer, your family could still come into contact with poisonous plants such as poison ivy, oak or sumac in any number of places….even in your own backyard. Those who have the misfortune of rubbing up against one of these plants may experience a red, itchy skin rash within 24 – 48 hours (note: contact with any part of the plant, not just the leaves, can cause this reaction). The rash is a result of the skin’s allergic reaction to the urushiol oil these plants contain (I didn’t realize this before, but not everyone is allergic to this oil, so there are some who may not experience a reaction).
It is a good idea to give your kids some tips on identifying poison ivy (this is the most common), as well as poison oak and sumac, so that they can be on the look-out for them and spare themselves an itchy encounter with these poisonous plants.
Here is a great article about how to identify poison ivy and other poisonous plants, and tips on what to do if you do happen to come in contact with them.
In all facets of life, be it a walk in the woods or an outing with friends, teach your children to be aware of what’s around them and to be able to identify potential dangers.
Now that your children are safe in the woods, what about keeping them safe at the beach? For all the details, read my post entitled, “Beach Safety“.