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Staying the Course -- August 11, 2020

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Superbob

Steely Resolve!
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Apr 21, 2005
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Coastal Carolina
Happy New Week, good and hearty Stay-the-Coursers! Here's hoping this second week of torrid August in the one-for-all-times year of 2020 brings you much joy -- or at least no headaches.

Well, no exciting news here. (But sometimes no news is good news, right?) After taking my wife to get her nice new hearing aids adjusted, I actually asked if she'd like to visit Tuesday Morning. Usually I grumble and growl when she wants to go there, but for this one Tuesday morning, I am a model husband for taking her there and accepting a few of her purchase suggestions (wants? needs?).

One week from today brings my cardiologist check-up geared to my one-year anniversary of aneurysm/valve surgery. Actual anniversary is 9/18 but I gather I'll be going through some tests in the interim, including a CT-scan. Hopefully will show the aneurysm kaput and the bovine valve doing well, and indicate whether a procedure to correct the incisional hernia is needed soon or down the road. Right now, my main pain is on the flip side: back and hip pain in daily dawgwalk. It's the old spinal stenosis flaring up, and along with the heat and humidity, it saps much of the joy from a dawgwalk. A friend on Facebook said she and her hubby are checking out something called Neuro HF10 (think I remember that correctly), an implant that may ease back pain for some without invasive surgery. Don't know if it is a possible way to dull stenotic pain or not. Got to do more research.

Anyway, always something, right? Part of a book, "The Joy of Aging," I contemplate writing. Candidate for fiction section of library?

Soldier on, Coursers! Let's hear how you're doing.

Cheers,
Superbob
🦸‍♂️
 

Superman

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Joined
Oct 3, 2009
Messages
915
Location
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
Good morning. Glad to read about a relatively uneventful week for you, but back pain is no joke. I don’t think one can properly appreciate how limiting that is unless they’ve experienced it. I hope it dissipates for you soon.

Big week here. Sending the oldest off to college! Wow. He was 8 when I started my account. Now he can beat his dad arm wrestling. Went for a “last hurrah” family canoeing trip yesterday. Of course it’s not a last anything. He’s welcome on vacation anytime. But I know schedule conflicts will become a thing more and more.

Really smart kid and super proud of him. Only hope he continues to make good choices as he gets a taste of independence. I’d like to think he has a pretty solid base, but after the experiences of a couple neighbors with their kids, one never knows. We had two neighbors without boys the same age. One had if together. A student. Off to a big state university. Knew what he wanted to do. The other, didn’t do well. In trouble with the law. Started taking some community college classes.
Guess which one dropped out his freshman year and which one is a successful CPA today?
 
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rich01

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Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
280
Location
Virginia US
Got a really bad case of poison ivy. It seems sweat spreads it, so I am staying inside today. This is the 8th day, so hopefully the worse is over.

Almost went to doctor yesterday, but decided to go to Walmart and buy the expensive poison ivy stuff and try one more time. Had to get up at 2 am because it was itching so bad and wash all the infected areas with a poison ivy cleanser and apply more anti-itch lotion. Finally able to get a little sleep.

I've had poison ivy before but this was different. I had a small spot on the underside of 1 arm. Then a couple days later it spread to the other side of my arm. Then it started moving up my arm, under my upper arm, and onto my chest. Yesterday I found a new spot on my lower back at belt line. That's why I think it must be sweat that spread it. I have been working outside several hours a day in this heat, but staying away from areas of poison ivy. Every day I wash my clothes and bed linen, but it still keeps spreading.

I went all over my property spraying everything that had 3 leaves. Yesterday I saw some poison ivy vines on a couple of trees that I don't think I sprayed, so going to do another spraying next week.

One thing I found interesting is my blood pressure has been running about 15 points higher since I got infected. I was using bentonite clay mixed with vinegar to make a paste I applied to my arm. It hardens in a few minutes and relieves the itch for about 2 hours. The thing is, bentonite clay is also used for detox, so I think what was happening is it was pulling some of the blood pressure medication out of my body, They warn you not to use within 2 hours of taking medication, but I was using it whenever the itching got bad and not paying attention to when I took the med.
 

dornole

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 5, 2014
Messages
696
Location
Minnesota, US
So sorry about the poison ivy. I never used to get it but I do now. And if I do get it, it ends up in various spots from getting under my fingernails and my then scratching mosquito bites, etc. I like the Tecnu scrub to remove the oils and also their soothing spray actually works for the itch, shockingly.
 

Superman

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 3, 2009
Messages
915
Location
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
@rich01

Well, I’d feel weird giving your post a “like”! Sounds awful. They sure it’s poison ivy and not some other plant? Being that it’s different from your prior experiences.
 

MartinF

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 11, 2016
Messages
169
Location
Southern California USA
We have poison oak here in California. Same thing as poison ivy. The oil from the plant gets on your clothes, your dog's hair, etc. You can spread it by itching and if it gets bad you need to go to the doctor. I think they put you on steroids.
For me the itching stops about a week after it shows up. Then gone by 2 weeks.
Hope you are thru the worst.
 

Art O Ceitinn

Active member
Joined
Aug 6, 2013
Messages
31
Location
Neuilly Plaisance
Good morning. Glad to read about a relatively uneventful week for you, but back pain is no joke. I don’t think one can properly appreciate how limiting that is unless they’ve experienced it. I hope it dissipates for you soon.

Big week here. Sending the oldest off to college! Wow. He was 8 when I started my account. Now he can beat his dad arm wrestling. Went for a “last hurrah” family canoeing trip yesterday. Of course it’s not a last anything. He’s welcome on vacation anytime. But I know schedule conflicts will become a thing more and more.

Really smart kid and super proud of him. Only hope he continues to make good choices as he gets a taste of independence. I’d like to think he has a pretty solid base, but after the experiences of a couple neighbors with their kids, one never knows. We had two neighbors without boys the same age. One had if together. A student. Off to a big state university. Knew what he wanted to do. The other, didn’t do well. In trouble with the law. Started taking some community college classes.
Guess which one dropped out his freshman year and which one is a successful CPA today?
We are also sending our oldest and only off to college to study law and she can beat me at arm wrestling since she was 14. She is a super kid and I hope her passage through life is good.
 

tom in MO

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 17, 2012
Messages
1,406
Location
MO USA
Got a really bad case of poison ivy. It seems sweat spreads it, so I am staying inside today. This is the 8th day, so hopefully the worse is over.

Almost went to doctor yesterday, but decided to go to Walmart and buy the expensive poison ivy stuff and try one more time. Had to get up at 2 am because it was itching so bad and wash all the infected areas with a poison ivy cleanser and apply more anti-itch lotion. Finally able to get a little sleep.

I've had poison ivy before but this was different. I had a small spot on the underside of 1 arm. Then a couple days later it spread to the other side of my arm. Then it started moving up my arm, under my upper arm, and onto my chest. Yesterday I found a new spot on my lower back at belt line. That's why I think it must be sweat that spread it. I have been working outside several hours a day in this heat, but staying away from areas of poison ivy. Every day I wash my clothes and bed linen, but it still keeps spreading.

I went all over my property spraying everything that had 3 leaves. Yesterday I saw some poison ivy vines on a couple of trees that I don't think I sprayed, so going to do another spraying next week.

One thing I found interesting is my blood pressure has been running about 15 points higher since I got infected. I was using bentonite clay mixed with vinegar to make a paste I applied to my arm. It hardens in a few minutes and relieves the itch for about 2 hours. The thing is, bentonite clay is also used for detox, so I think what was happening is it was pulling some of the blood pressure medication out of my body, They warn you not to use within 2 hours of taking medication, but I was using it whenever the itching got bad and not paying attention to when I took the med.
I am sensitive to poison ivy too. A doctor helps, the prescription steroids can really work. It's not your sweat that spreads it, but something you touch. Poison ivy allergy comes from the oil on the leaves and it is not water soluble. That's why you need a good soap to get rid of it.

For example, I get it from the dog. I now wash my hands and arms up to my elbows after a dog walk. However when we get some in the dog's yard, I've gotten it on my legs from her nuzzling. You can get it on your clothes, towels or bed sheets and keep re-exposing yourself. I treat potential poison ivy clothes like they were contaminated and separate them from normal laundry and wash the seperately. You can get it on your belt too. I once got it from my toddler, who ran through poison ivy and then I carried him on my shoulders getting it on my face and neck. Turned out he's not allergic.

When I think I've been exposed, I take a shower ASAP and wash myself everywhere at least three times. My sister used to work at an engineering surveying firm and they swear by Tecnu: Tecnu Original Outdoor Skin Cleanser | Tec Labs It works, but is expensive. A good soap and scrubbing work too.
I've tried it but its expensive.
 

rich01

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
280
Location
Virginia US
I have poison ivy soap that I use, but it didn't seem to help. I also have some soap called Mean Green Power Hand Scrub which is great for cleaning anything off you arms, hands, and legs. It has always worked for poison ivy in the past, but not this time. It's a scrub type of cleaner like the Tecnu or Zanfel.

I tried Tecnu Skin Cleaner and also the spray. Then I tried the really expensive Zanfel, which is about $30 for an ounce. The best I get is 2-3 hours of relief. Same with the bentonite clay and vinegar - 2-3 hours of relief. I also have some inexpensive Gold Bond Anti-itch lotion that seems to work for about 2 hours.

I've been using a clean wash cloth and towel every time I scrub down, but it still keeps spreading. I just had a 20 minute soak with epsom salts and baking soda. It's been about 2 hours since and the itching is starting back up again. It did seem to dry out some of the older blisters, so that should help some.

The problem is when I go to bed, the itching starts back up in 2 or 3 hours. I might be able to use the spray or lotion and get another hour before it becomes unbearable. Then I have to get up and use a scrub again before I can get the itching to stop. Getting up at 2 am and scrubbing myself down gets me wide awake and then I get to start the process all over again.
 

Superbob

Steely Resolve!
VR.org Supporter
Joined
Apr 21, 2005
Messages
8,369
Location
Coastal Carolina
Sorry you've had such a tough go of it. Guess I'm just lucky. Have had lot of exposure to poison ivy over the years, but no bad outbreaks. For a little humor, I started to post The Coasters' 1959 hit, "Poison Ivy," but then thought better of it. But one line of it describes the one therapy I'm familiar with: "....you're gonna need an ocean/of Calamine Lotion." That's the remedy I've always used, good ol' Calamine, but my cases have been mild. Hope your problems completely resolve soon.
 

rich01

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
280
Location
Virginia US
Sorry you've had such a tough go of it. Guess I'm just lucky. Have had lot of exposure to poison ivy over the years, but no bad outbreaks. For a little humor, I started to post The Coasters' 1959 hit, "Poison Ivy," but then thought better of it. But one line of it describes the one therapy I'm familiar with: "....you're gonna need an ocean/of Calamine Lotion." That's the remedy I've always used, good ol' Calamine, but my cases have been mild. Hope your problems completely resolve soon.
The worst appears over The epsom salts bath caused the worst area to dry out and scab over so it doesn't itch anymore. Still some smaller areas of infection, but they are manageable.
 

dornole

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 5, 2014
Messages
696
Location
Minnesota, US
Glad to hear the worst is over! Just as a public service announcement, wild parsnip is a nasty plant that is becoming more common in my area and in others. The flower resembles a yellow queen Anne's lace, or a dill flower if you know what that looks like. The sap from the leaves and stem makes your skin very sensitive to sun causing blistering and burns. You HAVE to keep covered up or more blisters and pain. After it heals many people have deep purple scars that last for a year or more. I'll spare you the blister photos here but here's a link to a nasty case if you're not squeamish, I personally know many people with scars from this plant:


Definitely one to watch out for in full or part-sun areas.

wild parsnip leaves.jpgwild parsnip flower.jpg
 

rich01

Well-known member
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
280
Location
Virginia US
I think what happened is I had a bad case of poison ivy and because I continued to work out in the hot sun for several days after, I also developed a heat rash which I mistook for the poison ivy spreading. They were both red and both itched.
 
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