Does salt water help poison ivy?

In this brief guide, we will answer the question “Does salt water help poison ivy?” and list down some other home remedies for healing poison ivy rash faster.

Does salt water help poison ivy?

Yes, salt water can help poison ivy. Dip a cotton ball in salt water and dab it over the poison ivy rash gently. It will dry out the rash reducing pain and itching.

What are some other home remedies for poison ivy rash?

Coming into contact with poison ivy can elicit an allergic reaction which causes itchy blisters to form on skin. There are some home remedies that you can use to soothe the rash and heal it faster.

Baking soda

You can mix baking soda in water to make a paste and then apply this paste to your rash. If the rash is present throughout your body then you can mix baking soda in a bathtub and then sit in it to soothe the rash. 

Apple cider vinegar

Alternatively, you can dab vinegar on your rashes to help soothe the irritation and itching although vinegar may sting but it will help in drying out the rash as well.

Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil can help reduce inflammation since it has anti-inflammatory properties. Poison ivy rash is itchy and you might want to scratch although you should not. In case there is some injury from scratching, tea tree oil will also help prevent an infection as it has antibacterial properties.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera has a lot of skin benefits including soothing the skin. So apply aloe vera gel on your rash to calm and soothe it.

Does salt draw out infection?

Yes, salt can draw out infection. Salt has been used as a disinfection for a long time. Salt helps disinfect the wounds and promotes healing.

What happens is salt robs the injured cells of their water by osmosis. The dehydration makes it very hard for bacteria to survive in it. In addition salt also draws out water from bacteria and dehydrates them. The dehydration obviously kills them. So when there is no bacteria left to damage cells, healing is promoted.

Although salt can disinfect, it is only a temporary fix. You should go see a doctor for more serious wounds as salt can kill most of the bacteria, but not all.

Moreover, saline water is used to clean the wounds rather than salt in its crystalline form as first of all salt can sting, and secondly the salt crystals can be harsh for the skin.

Does putting salt on a canker sore help?

Yes, putting salt on a canker sore helps but it can be very painful so it is better to put salt in warm water and then use it to rinse your mouth. 

Salt increases the pH of the canker sore and makes it more alkaline. Bacteria need acidic conditions to grow, it is hard for them to survive in alkaline conditions. 

Warm up some water in the microwave in a cup and dissolve some salt in it. Rinse your mouth with it and keep it in your mouth for 15 to 30 seconds then spit it out. Repeat it every couple of hours.

Keep in mind that it will sting.

Find out other ways to heal canker sores here.

Why is salt used as a preservative?

Salt is used as a preservative due to its hygroscopic nature and also because it is toxic to microorganisms. It is widely used to cure meat because when it is applied to meat, it absorbs the moisture from the meat leaving it dry and dehydrated. 

This dehydration leaves the meat less susceptible to contamination by bacteria. Dehydrated meat does not serve as a favorable condition for the survival of bacteria.

In addition, bacteria will get robbed off any water present inside its cells due to the presence of salt outside, again due to osmosis. So this is why salt has been used for years now as a natural preservative.

Other FAQs about Salt that you may be interested in.

Does salt water help yeast infections?

Does salt water kill lice?

Does salt water make you throw up?

Does salt water mix with freshwater?


In this brief guide, we answered the question “Does salt water help poison ivy?” and listed down some other home remedies for healing poison ivy rash faster.


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