Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

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Read this before posting!!

Since this board has been up, we have found there are several questions that routinely get asked in order to help diagnose problems. If you can have that information to begin with in your post, we'll be able to help right away (if we can!) without having to wait for you to post the info we need.

1) Your water parameters - pH, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrates and salinity (if appropriate). This is by far the most important information you can provide! Do not answer this with "Fine" "Perfect" "ok", that tells us nothing. We need hard numbers.

2) Tank size and a list of ALL inhabitants. Include algae eaters, plecos, everything. We need to know what you have and how big the tank is.

3) Feeding, water change schedule and a list of all products you are using or have added to the tank (examples: Cycle, Amquel, salt, etc)

4) What changes you've made in the tank in the last week or so. Sometimes its the little things that make all the difference.

5) How long the aquarium has been set up, and how did you cycle it? If you don't know what cycling is read this: Fishless Cycling Article and familiarize yourself with all the information. Yes. All of it.

We want to help, and providing this information will go a LONG way to getting a diagnosis and hopeful cure that much faster.

While you wait for assistance:
One of the easiest and best ways to help your fish feel better is clean water! If you are already on a regular water change schedule (50% weekly is recommended) a good step to making your fish more comfortable while waiting for diagnosis/suggestions is to do a large water change immediately. Feel free to repeat daily or as often as you can, clean water is always a good thing! Use of Amquel or Prime as a dechlor may help with any ammonia or nitrite issues, and is highly recommended.

Note - if you do not normally do large water changes, doing a sudden, large water change could shock your fish by suddenly changing their established water chemistry. Clean water is still your first goal, so in this case, do several smaller (10%) water changes over the next day or two before starting any large ones.

Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby sevenyearnight on Wed Jan 11, 2012 8:53 pm

I just wanted to make a note about planted tanks. I used this method in a planted tank with Cardinal Tetras, and the plants truly don't look much worse for the wear. The only South American plant has some yellowing on the older leaves, but it still doing fine. So, if for whatever reason you have to treat for ich in a planted tank, it's true some plants may not tolerate it well, but should grow back after treatment just fine if not a super sensitive species. Any other treatment that would be safe in a planted tank will probably not be as effective, or will not be as safe. I did lose one Cardinal out of 19 during treatment, but my husband said he saw one that was looking sickly more so than the others and was constantly getting picked on.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby sgtmyers88 on Mon Apr 09, 2012 4:07 pm

@OP

So you are saying regular kitchen salt will be better than marine salt with this treatment?
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby Pufferpunk on Tue Apr 10, 2012 1:34 am

I think I can speak for RTR & answer, yes. :)
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby sgtmyers88 on Tue Apr 10, 2012 1:44 am

Fascinating... what about the extra stuff they add to the kitchen salt? I had always thought that stuff would be harmful.

Unless you mean this kind:

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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby Pufferpunk on Tue Apr 10, 2012 2:40 am

You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

"The solution to pollution is dilution!"
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby RTR on Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:29 am

As usual, PP is correct. The additives to table salt are at such low concentrations that the fish would be pickled in brine before toxic levels were reached. There are no issues with such.

Re sevenyearnight's question, Table salt is simple, safe, and cheap and also highly purified. Kosher salt is similar, but may use different additives, and is more expensive without being any better (no more effective or safer).

Marine mix is blend of many, many minerals, not just chlorides. Marine mix will have less of the needed mineral ion (Cl-) than table salt, so is marginally less effective. Marine mix is much more costly than table salt and has much shorter storage life. It could be used but is less safe and less effective, measure for measure.

Table salt is cheap, simple and safe.

Most aquatic plats will withstand the standard treatment. Some few delicate plats may not do well. Planted tank folks generally are aware of which plants are particularly sensitive to either the salt content or the heat. If you know some of your plants are sensitive, move them out to a fishless container during treatment and do not return them to the treated tank until at least 3-4 full life cycles of the parasite have passed in their container without fish and the treated tank is back to normal temperature and salt content.

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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby Pufferpunk on Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:48 am

I just wanted to add: I successfully cured the ich totally covering a large (fist-sized) parrot cichlid, in 2 days, by using vitamin C.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby RTR on Wed Apr 11, 2012 9:02 am

I still have not tried that for myself. I likely won't get around to it until the tank room re-do is done - if it ever is.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby FADE2BLACK_1973 on Wed Apr 11, 2012 10:28 pm

Pufferpunk wrote:I just wanted to add: I successfully cured the ich totally covering a large (fist-sized) parrot cichlid, in 2 days, by using vitamin C.



The whole salt and heat method works :thumb: . It worked on my fahaka. Btw, PP what kind of vitamin C are you using in FW tanks? All I have ever seen and used was the SW additives. Boosting their immune systems is the best way to keep disease away. I used the immune boostin methods in my SW tanks in the past and it works on most fishes.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby Pufferpunk on Thu Apr 12, 2012 1:03 am

My VC dosing chart is in the Marine forum. I'm dosing the same as that.
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby RTR on Thu Apr 12, 2012 8:28 am

Vitamin C's effects are in no way limited to SW. It plays many roles in metabolism.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby FADE2BLACK_1973 on Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:51 am

So you could soak it in the food for FW fish? I know that vitamin C plays a big role for corals in reef tanks :D .
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby hadla on Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:54 am

just throwing my 2 cents in. if you are in doubt, look for canning and pickling salt(only ingredient listed on it is salt), thats what i had gotten 4 years ago when i first started with a 5g and had ich (and cured using the heat/salt method). still have most of it left lol.
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby Pufferpunk on Thu Apr 12, 2012 10:09 am

I add VC to their water in very high doses.
You are getting sleepy... you only hear the sound of my voice... you must do water changes... water changes... water changes... water changes...

"The solution to pollution is dilution!"
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Re: Curing Ich: RTR's Salt & Heat Method

Postby titanoboa100 on Tue Apr 24, 2012 12:07 am

I have been told by some people at pet stores that turning off the aquarium lights is best when treating ICK, do you guys adhere to this dogma?
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