Sunday, April 29, 2007

Hives

Hives are the way the skin sometimes reacts to allergies, physical irritation, stress or emotions. The often intensely itchy wheals that result may disappear in minutes of hours and usually within a couple of days, but while you have them, you may not want to appear all swollen and scratching in public. Here are the tips.

Antihistamines
Get antihistamines but remember most of them, make you drowsy.

Cool down
Cold compress or baths are about the best only topical treatment of hives. You can also rub an ice cube over the hives. However if you get hives from cold weather or water, you are out of luck.

Calamine lotion
It may help temporarily soothe the itch of your hives.

Alkaline
Anything alkaline usually helps to relieve the itch. Therefore try dabbing milk of magnesia on your hives. It is thinner than calamine, thus it may works better.

Hydrocortisone
If you have just a small number of small hives, a hydrocortisone cream like Cortaid applied directly on the hives may relieve the itch for a while.

Vegetation vigilantes
The leaves and bark of red alder, brewed into a strong tea, will help hives. Apply it locally to the affected area and you can also take a couple of tablespoonfuls internally. Repeat until the hives are relieved.

Avoid exposure
If you know you are going to get hives for whatever reasons, take an antihistamine beforehand to prevent it.

If you get hives in your mouth or throat, seek medical treatment immediately. People with chronic hives (longer than six weeks) or with severe acute hives should also see a doctor.