Hives is a sign of an allergic skin reaction, which appears suddenly. Usually, it is harmless and usually disappears after few hours.
Hives are slightly raised, flat topped bumps, smooth, and causes welts which are normally more reddish in color than the surrounding skin. This particular area of skin causes a sever itching.
Doctors refer hives as an ‘Urticaria‘. Hives are types of an allergic reaction, which appears when anything triggers the release of chemicals, which includes histamine.
The most common allergic condition triggers includes antibiotics, shellfish, nuts, eggs, berries, peanuts, insect bites or stings, animal dander, pollens and mold, plant substances, skin creams, cat scathes, moth scales, or the animal saliva.
Anginoedema is also like hives. However, the skin welts are larger and form at a deeper layer in the skin. Anginoedema causes severe swelling, usually on the face, near the eyes, and mouth. The swelling can occur inside the throat too. This is a dangerous situation, which can close off the passage of air into the lungs.
This type of hives is the most common rash which people may need emergency medical care. Angioedema skin condition is less common. However, both conditions can appear at any stage of life.
Early Signs of Hives
The early signs of hives include:
- A rash of smooth, raised, pink, or reddish bumps of different sizes, which is also called as wheals. However, these wheals look like a mosquito bites. It may cover all parts of body and are usually very itchy.
- Usually, hives appear first on the covered areas of the skin. These areas include the trunk, upper parts of arms and legs.
Wheals appear in the batches. In addition, each wheal may last from a few minutes to near about 6 hours. As wheals disappear, new ones may form.
- Usually, case of hives may lasts for at most a few days.
- At first hives are patchy. Later the patches may run together until the hives cover most of the body.
- The patches can large or small. Usually, patches are irregular in shape. Mostly, the patches have clearing of redness in the center with a red halo at the edge.
- Often, itching at this stage is intense.
Many other sever allergic reaction can occur with hives. However, a reaction may start with hives and then progress rapidly to more serious symptoms. The most serious reaction, which is also known as anaphylactic reaction, can also be a life-threatening emergency.
Symptoms of Early Hives
- Swelling of face, throat, tongue
- Wheezing a raspy sound while breathing
- Tightness in chest or throat
- Rapid or the irregular heart beat
- Low blood pressure
- Difficulty while breathing
- Difficulty while swallowing
Anginioedema is also related to hives. The common symptoms of Angioedema are swelling, usually around the mouth and eyes. However, it may also involve the throat, tongue, feet, hands and genitals.
- Skin may appear normal without any hives or rash
- Eyes may appear swollen
- Usually, swelling do not itch , but can be painful or burning
- Swelling may not be same on both the sides
- Same as hives, swelling of angioedema can go away on its own.
Consult you health care provider, in case you find any of the above-mentioned early signs of hives. In order to prevent hives, be aware of the above-mentioned allergic condition triggers.