May 5, 2009

Home Treatment, Symptoms and Causes for Allergy Hives

Posted in Category : Common Ailments

Allergy hives is a rash that is caused by an adverse reaction to certain substances. In most cases, allergy hives can be traced to certain foods or medication. Allergy hives are typically circular welts that are very itchy. The size of the hives varies and they can be anything from just a few millimeters in diameter to several centimeters. They usually appear in batches or clusters and often target the throat, trunk, arms and legs. This type of skin rash is Non-contagious.

The main causes for most allergy hives are a food allergic reaction or a medication allergic reaction. In cases of food allergic reaction, the hives can start within a few minutes of ingestion or a few hours. The most common food allergies in children are peanuts and shellfish such as oyster, lobster and crab. Soy, wheat and eggs too can cause allergic reactions. Adults too suffer from allergic reactions to peanuts and shellfish but are not as vulnerable to egg, wheat and soy allergies. Pork, Yeast, Citrus fruits, Chocolate, cow’s milk and cheese are also known to cause allergic reactions.

Medication allergic reactions can occur immediately after the first dose itself. In some cases, the person only suffers a reaction after a week or two of continuous medication. This type of reaction is considered to be more serious as it can cause cardio-respiratory failure. The most common medication to cause this type of reaction is the anti-diabetic -sulphonylurea glimepiride. Other medications that may cause allergic reaction include penicillin, acetylsalicylic acid and various anticonvulsants.

Allergic hives is not a disease or a true medical condition; rather it is a symptom or a reaction to a certain substance. When an offensive substance is ingested the body mistakes it for a threat and defends itself by releasing chemicals called histamines. These histamines cause the inflammatory reaction and the itch. Most allopathic treatments for hives consist of anti histamines. These aim at reducing the itching and discomfort that is associated with hives. Unfortunately, a person often needs high doses of these medications and almost all of them cause intense lethargy and drowsiness. In addition to this, some of the allergy medications have been linked to heart problems.

Since allergy medications only serve the purpose of easing discomfort, they can be avoided completely. You can use several natural methods to treat these reactions.

Oatmeal is considered to be one of the best natural treatments for hives. Add a tablespoon of oatmeal to a cup of boiling water. After it steeps for 30 minutes, apply the liquid to the hives. This treatment will help to soothe raw skin and will reduce itching. In addition to this, you can also add a cup or two of oatmeal to your tub for a relaxing soak. Aloe Vera gel is extremely soothing. Rub fresh Aloe Vera gel over the hives for instant relief from the itch. Apply a paste made out of baking soda and water to the affected areas to reduce the itching. It is important that the skin remains moisturized at all times as dry skin aggravates an itch. Mix a few drops of castor oil in a mug of water and use this as a last rinse after your shower. Dab yourself very lightly with a towel. If you have scratched your skin, add a drop of Margosa oil to protect the broken skin from bacterial infections.