Urticaria is also known as also known as Hives or Nettle rash are caused by an allergic reaction. Hives appear on the body as red, raised and itchy skin rash .The wheals of urticaria may be of different shapes and sizes, but usually look like nettle stings. An important feature of urticaria is that although the rash may persist for weeks, individual lesions usually disappear within a day, and often last only a matter of hours.
In some patients with ordinary chronic urticaria, the release of histamine from skin mast cells is triggered by factors circulating in the blood, such as antibodies directed against their own cells – a process known as autoimmunity.
Symptoms for Urticaria
Swellings, known as wheals, appear as a rash on the skin as pink or red in oval or round shape. They can be very itchy, and they have a red flare near to them.
- Wheals – Occur in batches on face, arms, hands, fingers, legs, feet and toes.
- Welts – Generally disappears within 24 hours, but sometimes another weal appears as the last one fades.
In some cases, hives can last for several days. People with chronic hives can have warning signs for months or years.
Types of Urticaria
When hives occurs for less than 6 weeks is termed as Acute Urticaria.
- Medications: Any drug may cause urticaria. However, the most commonly encountered ones are penicillin, aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, sulfonamides, thiazide diuretics, oral contraceptives etc
- Foods often encountered as causes of urticaria include nuts, eggs, fish, seafood, chocolate, meat, cow’s milk, some fruits.
- Respiratory allergens: Pollen, mold spores, mites, animal dandruff, and hairs may cause urticaria when taken through the respiratory tract.
- Infections: Respiratory infections such as sinusitis, tonsillitis, dental abscesses, urinary tract infections, and parasites may cause urticaria.
- Psychogenic factors: Reasons such as stress, sadness, and depression may aggravate the pre existing urticaria.
Occurs for more than 6 weeks, lasts months to years.
- Hereditary urticaria is seen in types of urticaria as angioedema and familial cold urticaria.
- Idiopathic urticaria without any known cause may be also seen.
- Autoimmune disorders.
Ayurveda for Urticaria
Urticaria in ayurveda can be correlated as “Sheetapitta”. Sheeta-pitta contains of two words in which sheeta means cold and pitta means hot. Therefore, it is caused due to more control of ‘cold’ over ‘hot’.
Treatment Modalities are planned as per acute or chronic stage and etiology.
- Classical Vamana/Virechana is advised for immediate relief from symptoms.
- Medications like Haridrakhandam, Arogyavardhini, patolakaturohinyadi kashayam, and many more medications are used in this conditions.
- Herbs like haridra , nimaba , amrita,Katuki, Nishotha, triphala helps the condition.
Simple Rules & Remedies for Urticaria
- Avoid certain food / medications which aggravates the symptoms
- Avoiding factors such as excess intake of salt, sour gruels and mustard; exposure to cold wind; improper emesis; insect bite.
- Oil massage over the body with Eladi Taila.
- Apply Aloe Vera gel when rashes appear.
- Neem paste also can be applied externally.