Hives, how can the symptoms be relieved

PHYLLIS LOGIE By PHYLLIS LOGIE, 14th Apr 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Diseases & Infections

Hives, also know as Urticeria can be caused by a whole host of allergens. Although not contagious the trigger could be viral, bacterial of parasitic.

Hives can attack anyone at any age

Hives are also commonly known as Urticeria which is a raised itchy skin lesion that can occur in any part of the body. The condition is characterised by a swollen and inflamed area, which appear suddenly in response to either an external or internal allergen.

It can be cause by ingested or inhaled food or drugs, food additives, pollen, external temperature, the Ultra Violet rays of the sun, an allergic reaction to plants, insect bites, cosmetics, hair dyes. Other more serious underlying causes can be carcinoma, mastocytosis, mononucleosis, rheumatic fever, malaria, lupus, lymphoma, hepatitis B or a thyroid disorder.

Although hives in itself is not contagious, the trigger might be either viral, bacterial or parasitic which would therefore need to be treated. However, in around 70% of cases the cause is unknown.

Hives can affect anyone regardless of age, gender or ethnicity and it can occur at anytime of the year, with 20% of the US population having the condition at any one time. The condition is acute, but can become chronic, it is generally accepted that if the attack lasts 6 weeks and if it continues longer than six weeks then it is usually classified as chronic.

The attack can be localised in one small area, or it can extend and take over much larger areas of the body. When an episode of hives erupt it is as a result of the dilation of the capillaries leaking fluid into the epidermis, which has several nerve endings causing the skin to itch.

There are several different types of hives brought about by different situations, therefore the treatment is specific to the underlying cause. However, the most effective treatment in many cases are Anti-histamine drugs, which should be taken regularly to keep the release of histamine at bay. Hives that fail to respond to Anti-histamine are usually treated with oral steroids.

Other measures can be taken to prevent the disease, whilst water helps to flush the toxins out of the system, yoghurt which contains acidophilus helps to relieve the inflammation, a regular intake of garlic is beneficial for its anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties and the increased intake of vitamin C helps with the repair of damaged cells and the elimination of free radicals.

Apart from prescribed medication, there are some holistic remedies which can be purchased at the health food store. There are also some self-help strategies which can be employed, such as the taking of cold showers to reduce body temperature, the application of cold compresses to the affected areas, the wearing of looser fitting clothing and the avoidance of vigorous physical exercises, can all help to relieve the symptoms. Hives can also be stress related, if this is an identified as part of the problem then a good stress management plan could well be the answer.

In most cases hives resolves itself, if it persists then the physician should be consulted in an effort to eliminate the possibility of other underlying diseases.


Allergens, Allergic, Allergic Pollen, Allergic Reaction, Allergies, Allergy, Hives

Meet the author

author avatar PHYLLIS LOGIE
I am a retired female who has been writing for the past five years. My favorite topics are history and biographies.

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author avatar Songbird B
15th Apr 2011 (#)

Interesting and informative... Thank you for sharing Phyllis..

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