Know All About Hives: Its Causes, Symptoms, Risk, Diagnosis & Home Treatments

This article is reviewed by HM Chandola 

What are Hives

Whether individuals have experienced hives themselves or are simply curious to learn more, this article serves as a go-to resource for understanding and effectively managing hives and hives allergy. The blog delves into the characteristics of hives and examines the various triggers associated with their occurrence, including allergies, medication, infections, and stress. The article sheds light on natural hives treatments that can be easily implemented at home, providing readers with practical insights and remedies. By exploring these topics, individuals can gain a better understanding of hives and develop strategies to address and alleviate their symptoms.

What are Hives?

Urticaria, commonly known as hives, is a skin condition characterized by clusters of swollen, raised welts on the surface of the skin. These welts can be pink, red, or flesh-colored and have a pale center. They are often itchy and can cause discomfort, ranging from mild to severe. Hives can appear suddenly without a clear cause and can vary in size and shape, from small spots to larger blotches. They can occur in people of any age group. [1]

What Causes Hives?

In many cases, the exact cause of hives is unknown; however, several factors are known to contribute to their development. Infections caused by bacteria, viruses, or parasites, as well as respiratory infections in young children, can cause hives. Medication, as well as allergic reactions to certain foods and food additives, can all cause hives.

Certain underlying conditions like systemic lupus erythematosus, rubella, and hepatitis have been associated with hives, along with emotional stress, contact with plants or animals, temperature changes, exercise, sweating, and bee or wasp stings. While the cause is rarely identified in chronic hives, it is worth noting that aspirin and codeine may worsen the condition for some individuals. [5]

Hives From Food Allergy

Certain foods can trigger urticaria (hives), causing rashes or hives on the skin. Some common allergens that can cause food allergy hives are nuts, eggs, fish, seafood, chocolate, meat, cow’s milk, citrus fruits, grapes, plums, pineapples, bananas, apples, strawberries, tomatoes, garlic, onions, peas, beans, carrots, mushrooms, fermented foods, spices, and alcohol. 

When someone consumes these trigger foods, they may develop hives allergy within 1-2 hours. Children are more likely to experience food-related hives on skin.  When a food allergy from hives occurs, it is best advised to use these remedies mentioned below. [1]

Home Remedies for Hives Treatments

  1. Soothe The Skin With Aloe Vera

Using aloe vera can be an effective home remedy for hives, as it has healing properties that can soothe the skin. To use aloe vera for hives, apply a generous layer of aloe vera gel to the affected area a few times per day. It is best advised to use aloe gel from the aloe plant. To do so, break off a leaf from the aloe vera plant and slice it open lengthwise. Apply the gel from the inside of the leaf to the affected area. [3].

  1. Get Relief Using Peppermint Oil

To effectively utilize peppermint oil for hives, it is recommended to mix a few drops of the oil with a carrier oil like coconut or almond oil. This blend helps dilute the potency of peppermint essential oil while facilitating its absorption into the skin. The soothing and cooling properties inherent in peppermint oil make it an excellent choice for alleviating itchiness and inflammation associated with hives. [4]

  1. Use a Cold Compress for Relief

A simple and effective way to find relief from hives is by using a cold compress. You can prepare a cold compress by wrapping ice cubes in a washcloth or using ice packs. Gently apply the cold compress to the itchy areas of the skin several times a day. It’s important to remember to place a thin cloth between the ice pack and your skin to protect it. Cold temperature helps shrink the blood vessels and prevents the release of more histamine, which can help reduce itching and provide relief. Leave the cold compress on for about 10 to 15 minutes at a time to experience its soothing effects. [6]

Home Remedies for Hives

4.Get Good Sleep

Lack of sleep can irritate or aggravate your hive condition. Hence, getting a good night’s sleep is important for managing hives effectively. Quality sleep allows the body to repair and restore itself, which can help reduce inflammation and ease hives symptoms. To promote better sleep with hives, it is advisable to create a soothing bedtime routine, such as practicing relaxation techniques like deep breathing or gentle stretching. It’s also important to maintain a comfortable sleep environment.  [6]

5. Get Some Natural Sunlight 

Chronic hives may benefit from vitamin D supplementation. Vitamin D is also known as the “sunshine vitamin.” When your skin absorbs ultraviolet (UV) B from the sun, it aids in the production of vitamin D in your body. Keep in mind, however, that your skin can only produce so much vitamin D at one time. Excessive sun exposure can also cause skin problems. 

Those who tan easily or have sun allergies can get their vitamin D from dietary sources such as oily fish, egg yolks, certain mushrooms, fortified milk, cereals, and cheese products.

[7] [8]

6. Apply Shea Butter to the Affected Skin
Hives can cause skin irritation. The anti-inflammatory properties of shea butter help to soothe skin and relieve itching. This could be especially beneficial for skin conditions that are inflammatory like hives. Shea also absorbs quickly, which could mean relief from flare-ups sooner. For best results, apply a spoonful of shea butter onto the affected area and massage it in until it is completely absorbed. [9]


Hives are a temporary skin condition characterized by swollen welts that can appear suddenly, itch, and cause discomfort. While the exact cause of hives is often unknown, factors such as medication, allergies, infections, and underlying conditions can contribute to their development. Food allergies can also trigger hives, and certain home remedies like aloe vera, peppermint oil, cold compress, good sleep, and sun exposure may provide relief from hives symptoms.


What are the common symptoms of hives?

Hives typically manifest as raised, swollen welts on the skin that can be itchy and vary in color and size. They may appear suddenly and disappear within a few hours or days.

What causes hives?

Hives can be triggered by a variety of factors, including allergic reactions to food, medications, insect bites, or environmental allergens. Other causes may include infections, stress, and underlying health conditions.

How long do hives typically last?

Acute hives usually go away within a few hours or days. In some cases, however, they can last for weeks or even become chronic, lasting longer than six weeks.

Can stress worsen hives?

Yes, stress is a known trigger for hives or can aggravate existing hives. Emotional stress, anxiety, and elevated stress hormone levels can all contribute to the development or exacerbation of hives symptoms.

When should I seek medical attention for hives?

If you have severe hives that interfere with your breathing, cause facial swelling, or are accompanied by other troubling symptoms such as dizziness or throat tightness, you should seek immediate medical attention, as these can indicate a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) that requires emergency treatment. Furthermore, if hives persist for more than a few days or have a significant impact on your daily life, you should consult a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and management.












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