Calamine lotion is the best cream or ointment option for easing the itching associated with poison ivy, according to WebMD. A doctor may suggest a topical corticosteroid cream, but other over-the-counter options may cause allergic reactions.
In addition to applying calamine lotion to a poison ivy rash, there are other measures that an individual can take to help heal the poison ivy rash, as explained by WebMD. For instance, as soon as possible following contact with a poison ivy plant, an individual should wash the area with lukewarm water and mild soap. All clothing, including shoes, that possibly came in contact with the plant should also be washed.
During the blistering stage of poison ivy, a cool compress may bring relief, according to WebMD. A cool shower may also help control itching. A mixture of water and baking soda can also be applied to the poison ivy rash to promote healing and control discomfort. For those having issues with itching at night, an over-the-counter antihistamine may offer relief.
Although most cases of poison ivy clear up on their own, a visit to the doctor is needed if there is a fever accompanied by the poison ivy rash or if the blistering and itching are severe. A person should also contact the doctor if the poison ivy is present in the eyes, throat, lips or genitals, according to WebMD.