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What are hives? & What causes hives & the risk factors involved in it?

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Hives usually result from the reaction of an allergen to something you’ve eaten or encountered. If you experience reactions to something that is allergic, the body starts to release histamines in your blood. Histamines are substances that the body produces to protect itself against infections and other intruders from outside. 

However, for some people, histamines can trigger swelling, itching, and a host of signs and symptoms caused by hives. As for allergens, hives may be caused by things such as pollen medicines or good animals dander, food items, and insects. 

Hives could be caused by factors other than allergies. It’s not uncommon for individuals to suffer from hives as a result of tension, tight clothing or exercise, illness, or even infections. There is also the possibility of developing itching as a result of overexposure to cold or hot temperatures or caused by excessive sweating. There are many possible causes, often the exact cause behind the hives is not known. 

What does hives Look Like?

The most prominent symptom that is associated with hives is the appearance of welts on the skin. They may appear red but could be of the same shade as the skin. They could be smaller, circular, ring-shaped, large, and of a random shape. Itchy hives usually form in large numbers around the affected region of the body. They may grow in size or grow. 

Hives can disappear or reappear during the eruption. Hives may last for a range of times, ranging between half-hour up to a whole day. Hives can turn white when they are squeezed. Sometimes, the hives can alter shape or form and result in a bigger elevated area. 

Hives can be found in a variety of locations within the body. Seek medical attention right away if you are experiencing hive eruption around your throat, your tongue, or any sensitive area. 

Can the Prevention of Hives be Achieved?

Small changes in your lifestyle can aid in preventing hives from becoming a regular occurrence at some point in the near future. If you suffer from allergies and know the substances that could trigger reactions that are allergic, your physician may advise against any exposure to these elements. 

Allergy shots are an alternative that can help reduce the possibility of developing the same hives later on. Avoid areas with high humidity or wear tight clothes after having recently suffered an outbreak of hives. 

What Should you Expect?

Although the hives may be painful and itchy they’re usually not chronic and usually disappear after a certain time. But, you should be aware that when some hives go disappear, others may be noticed. 

Hives that are mildly asymptomatic are considered to be harmless. Hives could be risky if you’re experiencing an extreme allergic reaction that causes swelling in your throat. The prompt treatment of a severe case of hives is crucial to ensure a positive outlook. 

Treatment Options for Hives

The first step to getting treatment is to determine whether you really suffer from the condition. Most of the time doctors can determine the presence of hives through examination. The skin will display evidence of the swellings that can be characteristic of itching. 

The doctor can also conduct tests on your skin or blood to determine what causes your hives. Particularly if they were due to the result of an allergy.  It is possible that you don’t require prescription medication if you’re suffering from minor allergic hives that are not caused by allergies or other health issues. If this is the case the doctor may suggest seeking temporary relief through:

  • Antihistamines can be taken
  • Avoiding irritation to the skin
  • Avoid hot water as it could aggravate hives
  • Using a cool or warm bath or baking soda. 

Anaphylaxis is an emergency medical condition that required to be dealt with promptly by a doctor 

Complications Involved 

Hives that are chronic don’t place you at risk of momentary risk of having a serious allergy. However, if you notice hives in the course of an allergic reaction that is serious take immediate care. The signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis are dizziness, breathing problems, and swelling of your mouth, eyelids, and lips. 

Different Types Of Hives:

Allergic Hives:

The most frequent causes of itching can be attributed to allergic reactions. They could be due to an allergen to which you might be sensitive such as:

  • Food items
  • Dust mites
  • Insects bites
  • Pet dander
  • Pollen 

Hives that are mildly caused by allergies are often managed with long-term and short-term allergy medicines and avoid any triggers. 


It can be a severe allergic reaction that can be life-threatening. The symptoms of this condition are hives. They usually accompany breathing difficulties, nausea, vomiting, severe sweating, and dizziness. Make sure to call your doctor for such causes. 

Chronic Hives

Chronic hives are recurring instances that do not necessarily have a clear root. Also known as chronic urticaria, this condition is characterized by frequent hives which can disrupt your life. 

It is possible to be able to identify chronic hives if are suffering from welts that do not disappear after six weeks. Although not life-threatening, this kind of hives is painful and hard to manage. They could also be a sign of a health issue


This type of hives that is acute is known as mild. A lot of scratching or constant pressing on the skin can cause it too. The condition usually disappears naturally within a brief time without any treatment. 

Hives that are caused by heat

Certain temperature fluctuations may cause hives in those with sensitivity to temperature changes. Hives caused by cold can result due to cold air or water exposure as well. Exposure to sunlight or tanning beds can also result in solar hives among certain individuals. 

Hives that are Caused by Infections

Both bacteria and viral conditions can trigger hives. The most common bacterial causes of hives are urinary tract infection. The infectious mononucleosis virus or hepatitis, as well as colds, can trigger hives.

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