Slice your tee shot into the jungle? Before you begin your search, remember to tread lightly. Waiting for you in the bushes just off the fairway is a more-prolific and more-poisonous form of poison ivy than in year's past. And golfers can thank global warming for that.
Typically poison ivy can be identified by three, spade-shaped leaflets (most often green). Sometimes greenish flowers and ivory-colored berries can be found near the stem. Golfers who play heavily wooded courses should cover their skin before leaving the fairway to search for a ball. If you come in contact with poison ivy, don't scratch the ensuing rash as bacteria under your fingernails can infect the area. Treat the area with hydrocortisone cream, take an oral antihistamine and keep the rash area cool with a damp cloth, ice cubes, or a cold bath. It can take up to two weeks for it to go away.
Ron Kaspriske is the fitness editor of Golf Digest.
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