Hives – Causes and Types

Hives or urticaria is a reaction to the skin, which is characterized by a prominent reddish rash and very itchy. Reddish rashes can affect one area of ​​the body and can also expand to form areas such as islands. Hives are also called calligraphy usually appear accompanied by intense itching and can also be accompanied by stinging or burning. Hives appear suddenly anywhere on the skin, including the face, lips, tongue, throat and ears.

What is Hives?

Hive is a general term for urticaria. Urticaria is a pink or red itchy rash that appears as red spots or bumps on the skin. The size of urticaria varies, from small to the size of a dinner plate and can be joined together to form a wider area known as plaque.

When itching starts, Hives is a disease that is often mistaken for a mosquito bite. Swelling usually goes away in minutes to several hours in one place, but can come and disappear for days or weeks, sometimes even lasting longer.

In most cases, itching is not due to allergies and urticaria can be effectively treated with antihistamines which do not cause drowsy side effects.

When itching occurs almost every day for more than 6 weeks, this can be referred to as chronic (ongoing) urticaria, which may require additional treatment. Well, now you know what is hives or the meaning of hives, here are the causes of hives that need attention.

Causes of hives on the skin

Hives are formed in response to a body chemical called histamine, which causes the tissue in the skin to swell. Histamine and other chemicals cause blood vessels to dilate and become leaking so that fluid from the blood leaks out of the blood vessels causing itching and swelling.

Allergic reactions, chemicals in food, insect stings, exposure to sunlight or drugs, all of which can also cause the release of histamine. Sometimes it is difficult to find out what exactly causes this Hives.

Here are other causes of Hives:

  • Foods, such as nuts, shellfish, food additives, eggs, strawberries, alcohol and caffeine and wheat products
  • Infections, including influenza, colds, glandular fever, hepatitis B, and viral infections
  • Bacterial infections, including urinary tract infections and strep throat
  • Intestinal parasite
  • Extreme temperature or temperature change
  • High body temperature
  • Pet fur, such as dogs, cats, horses and so on
  • Dust mites
  • Cockroaches and cockroach droppings
  • Sap and pollen
  • Some plants, including nettles, poison ivy, and poison oak
  • Chronic diseases, such as thyroid or lupus
  • Excessive scratches and vibrations on the skin
  • Sports
  • Stress

In some cases, people never find the exact cause of hives. Chronic urticaria can be started as an autoimmune response, but it is not clear.

Risk Factors of Hives

Although urticaria is usually associated with food allergies, insects, drugs, and other irritants, urticaria can also have non-allergic causes such as autoimmune diseases, and even food poisoning. Other cases are idiopathic, meaning the cause is unknown.

Hives can affect anyone, but more often found in patients who have a history of previous allergies, especially in children and women with a predilection of ages 30 to 60 years. It is estimated that between 15 percent and 23 percent of adults will experience at least one urticaria.

Types of hives on the skin

There are several types of urticaria that appear on the skin that are useful for distinguishing mild to chronic Hives, the following include:

1. Acute hives

Is a rash or swelling that lasts less than six weeks. The most common causes of this type of urticaria are food, drugs, latex or infection, also caused by insect bites. The most common foods that cause itching are nuts, chocolate, fish, tomatoes, eggs, some fresh fruit, soybeans, wheat and milk.

Additives in certain foods and preservatives can also be a cause of hives. Medications that can cause itching include aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen.

The emergence of acute Hives can also be triggered by infection, changes in temperature, exercise, and stress.

2. Chronic hives

This type of urticaria appears with a red or swollen rash that lasts more than six weeks. The cause of chronic Hives is usually more difficult to identify than the type of acute Hives. The causes can be similar to acute hives but can also include autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, chronic infections, hormonal disorders and malignancies.

3. Physical hives

Hives can also be caused by direct physical stimulation of the skin, for example cold weather, heat, sun exposure, vibration, pressure, sweating and exercise.

This type of urticaria usually occurs directly on the affected skin area and does not spread to other places. Most itching appears within an hour after exposure.

4. Dermatographism

This type of urticaria is firmly formed after scratching or scratching the skin. Itching can also occur along with other forms of hives.

4. Angioedema

Angioedema can also occur on the skin. This condition is similar to itching, but affects the deeper layers of the skin.

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