I have had severe hives for 1 week. Treating with 300mg of benadryl ea day, Doxypin 10 mg at bedtime and prednisone 40 mg. I am very concerned about being on Prednisone especially since it is not doing any good. Does pred

(Feb 3, 2007)


Hives or urticaria, are characterized by raised, red itchy welts that appear in clusters on the arms, legs, face and trunk of the body. They can also appear on the scalp and on the hands and feet. An attack of hives often begins with an intense itching of the skin that quickly erupts into small welts. They often start out as in one small spot about the size of a mosquito bite and can quickly spread. They can also appear in one place, fade and then as if by magic reappear somewhere else.

Hives are a sign that the body is having an allergic reaction. When we have an allergic reaction, the mast cells in the body produce histamine, the same substance that causes many of us to sneeze and have watery eyes in the spring during hay fever season. Histamine causes the capillaries (small blood vessels in the body) to become leaky. The escaping fluids become trapped under the skin causing swelling and itching. A bout of hives can lass less than 24 hours, however, after an attack they can continue to reoccur for up to six weeks. In some more chronic cases, they can last even longer.

Hives can be brought about by just about anything that can cause an allergic reaction. We can react to something that was eaten, touched or inhaled. Common allergens are medications, foods, additives and preservatives, animal dander, insect bites, exposure to chemicals, pollen and mold. Constricting clothes as well as physical and emotional stress can also bring on hives.

While an attack of hives is not typically life threatening, it is often very uncomfortable to the sufferer. Fortunately, there are a alternative healing methods you can do to lessen or even eliminate hives from your life naturally.

Recommendations For Wellness

  • If you experience tightness in your throat, shortness of breath, the swelling of your tongue or face, fainting or wheezing seek immediate medical advice.
  • Don’t scratch. It has been shown that itching hives can actually increase a flair-up and cause them to spread even more.
  • Try wearing loose fitting cloths, to help lessen flair-ups. Tight clothing can rub against a hive and cause them to spread as well.
  • If you think that allergies are causing your hives, it is important to identify triggers and prevent future outbreaks.
  • Keep a hive diary and record what you have eaten, where you are, what you were doing and how you were feeling just prior to an attack.
  • Avoid foods that may trigger an attack such as diary produces, eggs, cured meat, alcohol, chocolate or ones that contain artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
  • Try to relax. Turn off the TV and the computer and turn on some soothing music. Try meditating, doing yoga or deep breathing. Studies indicate that relaxation can help ease the discomfort experienced with hives.
  • Herbs such as horsetail, valerian, St. Johns wort, lemon balm and peppermint can help to reduce the inflammation and pain caused by hives.
  • Externally, aloe vera gel can be applied to hives to sooth the burning and itching feeling being experienced and reduce inflammation.
  • Soaking in a tub of warm water with an infusion of chamomile has also been known to help sooth the burning, itching and inflammation of hives.
  • Another way to help reduce the itching and inflammation of hives is to add a handful of oatmeal, cornstarch or baking soda to a warm bath.
  • Vitamin C has been shown to help people with hives.
  • It has been reported that vitamin B12 has also been show to reduce the severity of an attack as well as reduce their frequency.
  • Herbs such as chamomile, wild oregano and green tea have been shown to have an antihistamine effect in the body.

answered by R L on Feb 5, 2007, 8:57:02


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