What Are Hives?

Do you have red itchy bumps on your skin? These may be hives.

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Do you have red itchy bumps on your skin? They are unsightly and uncomfortable...and a little unsettling.

Well, it's just possible that those red bumps may be hives.

Hives are usually caused by some sort of allergic reaction, and, while itching is the most common symptom, some people with hives report that they may also burn or sting. Hives can appear anywhere on your body, including on your tongue, and may vary in size from a quarter of an inch across to several inches. Just to confuse the issue, some patches may join together to form areas known as "plaques".

While hives are generally just a nuisance, and not life-threatening, if you have hives together with other symptoms, such as difficulty in breathing, they may be indicating a more serious problem.

Mild cases of hives often disappear on their own, but more severe cases may require medical treatment.  Since the root cause of hives is an allergy, often simply removing the substance the body is allergic to is all it takes.  while more severe outbreaks msy require a doctor's treatment, simple home remedies also exist.  One of the most common is simply taking a soothing bath. Simply add five or six tablespoons of oatmeal and three tablespoons of cornstarch or sodium bicarbonate to your bath water and enjoy a good soak.

Some people find that certain OTC products offer relief from hives.  Many of these, such as OxyHives, contain natural ingredients, including Apis Mellifica (Honey Bee), Arnica Montana (Leopard's Bane), Ichthyolum, Trigonocephalus lachesis, Hepar, Mercurius solubilis, Rhus Toxicondendron (Poison Oak - Surprise!  It works!), and Urtica Urens.

For more information on a natural treatment for hives, please click here.

By Donovan Baldwin

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What are Hives?
Page Updated 6:55 PM Thursday 5/22/2014