May 12, 2009

Home Treatment, Causes and Symptoms of Chronic Hives

Posted in Category : Natural Cures

Chronic hives – medically known as urticaria are a kind of skin disorder where parts of the skin experience rashes and itchiness. Hives usually appear as swollen and reddened, and it can affect any part of the body. They are often circular in shape and can resemble pinprick rashes or may be several centimeters in diameter. This is usually a benign condition and the rashes, in most cases, go away on their own after a few weeks. However, in some chronic cases, the hives may stay for longer duration (more than 6 weeks is considered chronic condition). Another sign of chronic hives is that the rashes keep recurring frequently.

The exact cause of chronic hives cannot be ascertained. Usually, it happens due to an autoimmune disorder – when the body mistakenly becomes allergic to itself. Chronic hives can also be triggered by food, medicines, or other chemicals that the body is allergic to. External weather conditions may also control the symptoms of chronic hives to a large extent. In some cases, chronic hives may also be caused by some underlying disease in the body – for example, thyroid disease or blood disorders can have an effect on the appearance of chronic hives.

It is quite difficult to find a permanent cure for chronic hives, especially because its cause is not easily understood. In most cases, the treatment is to manage the symptoms as best as possible. If you can identify any allergen that acts as a trigger, you should avoid it immediately. You can also consult a doctor and try some medications, if your symptoms do not improve with time. If the hives are found to be linked to some other disease in the body, you will need to get appropriate treatment for them as well. To manage chronic hives better, you can also try out some of the home remedies mentioned below.

  • Cold Treatment: Cold baths or cold compresses can help soothe the skin irritation and reduce swelling. You can bathe the affected area with cold water or opt for a short cold water soak.
  • Inflamed skin is prone to damage so avoid applying ice directly to your skin. Fill a clean soft cotton sock with a few ice cubes and use this as a handy cold compress when the itch becomes unbearable.
  • You can also press the skin with a washcloth soaked in chilled water or an ice pack.
  • Calamine Lotion: Calamine is an antipruritic agent which means that it reduces itching. Apply generous amounts of this lotion to the affected areas of your body for instant relief.
  • Aloe Vera Gel: Mix aloe vera gel with vitamin E oil and apply it on the rashes 2-3 times a day.
  • Milk of Magnesia: Applying alkaline solutions like milk of magnesia can help provide some relief from itchiness.
  • Oatmeal-cornstarch Mix: Mix oatmeal, cornstarch, and water to make a paste. Apply this paste on the rashes and leave it on until the paste dries up completely.