What Is A Hives Rash And Is It Dangerous?
The medical term for hives rash is Urticaria. But, to answer the question what is a hives rash, it is a bit more complicated than a description of their appearance. The raised, flat-topped bumps that tend to be smooth to the touch and red in color have as many different causes as they do symptoms.
The usual symptoms most of us are familiar with is that itchy, and often burning sensation that drives you to want to scratch. Hives rashes can appear anywhere on the body in either small pinpoint out breaks or the smaller outbreaks can join together to create a much larger and uniform coverage. When hives cover a larger area of the body, doctors refer to them as plagues.
Why do people get hives?
When it comes to discovering what is a hives rash, it really matters what causes a person’s outbreak. Rashes can be caused by allergic reactions to foods, bites, sun exposure, cold or heat exposure, contact with plants or animals, and reactions to medication.
When a patient presents a rash at a doctor’s office, not only will the doctor look at the condition of the skin directly, but they will want to review the patient’s recent activities to arrive at a correct diagnosis and subsequent treatment. So, if a patient reports that he was out in the sun all weekend and noticed the rash soon thereafter over parts of the body that were directly exposed to the sun, a doctor may arrive at a diagnosis that the patient has a sun rash and then prescribe the best treatment to resolve the rash and end the patient’s suffering.
Can hives be dangerous?
Another thing that doctors must confront when dealing with a hives rash is that they may have to help a patient with a rash that is more than merely annoying. In some cases rashes can become life threatening.
If a person experiences certain symptoms along with a visible rash, they should immediately seek medical treatment in an emergency room. If they experience any of the following symptoms they may be experiencing an outbreak that is also affecting their organs:
• Swelling of the throat
• Difficulty breathing
• Shortness of breath
In the case of angioedema, a patient may also experience severe stomach pain and cramps. If breathing comes with difficulty the patient must seek immediate care or risk death.
What should you do if you develop a rash?
There are some important things you should know when it comes to self-treating your rash.
• Wear looser clothing
• Reduce contact with affected areas
• Stay cool
• Reduce activity during outbreak
• Take a hot shower or bath
• Take OTCs such as ibuprofen, Advil, aspirin, diuretics, laxatives
• Take prescriptions meds such as codeine or barbiturates
Will this suffering ever end?
Yes, it will end but some cases will last longer than others depending on the cause of the rash. Seeking medical treatment is the best course for resolving a rash, because if left untreated a rash can last for weeks. If treated as soon as possible a rash can resolve within hours or days.