Are There Conditions Or Other Causes That Look Like Hives
There are other rashes that may look like hives, but the fact that they remain stable and do not resolve within 24 hours is helpful in distinguishing them from hives. Such rashes may need to have a small specimen of skin removed and examined under the microscope to accurately determine the nature of the skin disease.
When to visit the doctor
- If hives are making it difficult to sleep, then it may be necessary to see a physician. This would be especially important if you are taking nonprescription antihistamines. If your hives last longer than two months, it is also likely you will benefit from visiting a physician.
Stress Worsening Existing Conditions
Stress can contribute to flare ups of other skin conditions.
It can also contribute to dyshidrotic eczema, which causes blisters on the hands and feet.
Stress levels may also trigger flares of skin conditions like psoriasis.
Stress is a common trigger for guttate psoriasis, which may cause small, red spots on children and adults with the condition.
When Should I Seek Medical Advice
While most people can treat their stress skin rash at home, you may want to see your healthcare provider if you have any of the following:
- Your hives have yellow or green fluid in them or are very hard.
- You have areas of peeling skin or a fever or pain together with the skin rash.
- You just took antibiotics or another medication.
These are not stress rash symptoms and require medical attention.
If you have a preexisting skin or health condition like psoriasis, you may want to speak to your healthcare provider as soon as you see hives. You may need to adjust your medications or treatment.
If over-the-counter antihistamines dont work for treating your itching and hives, your healthcare provider may order prescription-strength antihistamines, oral steroids , or even antibiotics. If these dont work, the next step is seeing a dermatologist or an allergist.
Read Also: Can You Sue Your Employer For Stress
How To Get Rid Of A Stress Rash
Stress hives often resolve on their own within a few days, Lee says, but they can persist if your stress level remains high. Reducing stress by meditating, deep breathing, or exercising can help your body relax and heal the hives.
Here are some other ways to treat a stress rash and relieve itching, swelling, and pain:
- Take over-the-counter oral antihistamines, like Benadryl or Claritin.
- Apply over-the-counter topical cortisones, like hydrocortisone.
- Ask your doctor about a prescription topical steroid.
- Place a cool compress over the hives or take a cool bath.
- Gently rub aloe vera on your hives. Aloe vera contains anti-inflammatory properties that can help ease itching and soothe skin.
How To Manage Stress Rash
Its important to remember that stress rash doesnt usually cause problems. But if you experience other symptoms apart from itching and swelling, it would be best to seek medical attention immediately. Your hives might be due to health conditions that could be life-threatening.
In most cases, hives due to stress are easy to treat. If you are lucky, the rash could go away on its own. Some people experience hives that last longer than usual. In cases like this, you might need to take precautions to prevent the rash from getting worse.
First of all, avoid scratching your skin, no matter how itchy it may be. Scratching will only make things worse and promote bacterial infection in the skin scrapes.
You can also consider home treatments like ice packs and compresses. These things will help to reduce swelling and itchy sensations. However, applying ice directly to the skin is not recommended. There are several over-the-counter medications that you can try. Antihistamines are one of the most well-known medications for skin rash, and it helps reduce symptoms and discomfort. Severe cases might require steroids and antibiotics. If the rashes persist, your doctor might refer you to a skin specialist.
Recommended Reading: How To Get Rid Of Stress Weight
Remedies And Treatments For Hives
Managing a case of hives can involve relying on home remedies and over-the-counter medication. You may also try making small lifestyle changes to lessen the instances of coming across a trigger that will make your skin erupt in hives.
Over-the-Counter Oral Antihistamines
Antihistamines work on histamine, which is released by mast cells â a certain type of immune system cell â in the presence of an allergen or an irritant.
Anti-Itch Creams and Lotions
However, some people can be sensitive to certain topical medications. Children may have a bad reaction to corticosteroids, such as hydrocortisone cream. Topical treatment is also not recommended if the affected area is sore, infected, or features an open wound. Hives with these features may only worsen if you treat them with lotions or creams.
Cooling Home Treatments
When you have hives, a cooling sensation may comfort you and draw your attention away from the discomfort caused by skin irritation. Apply cold and wet compresses, use ice on the affected areas, or take a cold bath.
You may also keep some over-the-counter lotions and creams in the fridge, so itâs cool to the touch when you need to apply it on your skin.
Whats The Difference Between Skin Rashes And Hives
Skin rashes and hives are often mistaken as being the same. However, there are slight differences between these skin-related issues.
A skin rash is an unusual change in your skins color, texture, or appearance due to skin inflammation. This inflammation occurs when your body reacts to an infection, an autoimmune disorder , or substances that cause allergic reactions.
Hives, also known as urticaria, are a type of skin rash that can occur when your immune system releases the chemical histamine in response to an allergen. The appearance of hives can differ from other skin rashes, and hives usually have a recognizable pattern.
Don’t Miss: How To Reduce Stress And Overthinking
Over The Counter Medication
Histamines trigger your immune system responses, which may contribute to the development of a stress rash. Antihistamines are medicines that help reduce pain and inflammation associated with a stress rash .
You can look for Diphenhydramine or Fexofenadine , over-the-counter or consult a doctor. Loratadine , Timeton or Zyrtec may be prescribed by your doctor to reduce pain, itching and inflammation.
Benadryl may make you feel sleepy.
B. Topical Steroids
Topical steroids are creams, lotions or gels that are applied to your skin to reduce inflammation, redness and swelling associated with various skin conditions . They mimic the corticosteroid hormones that are produced in the body by your adrenal glands. This helps to relieve your skin of symptoms that are also linked to a stress rash.
You may look for hydrocortisone cream to treat a stress rash. It comes in 1% concentrations OTC.
C. Regular Medication
If you are already dealing with other skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema or rosacea among others,stress may contribute to flare-ups. In such a case, continue taking the medicines that have been prescribed by your doctor to help reduce symptoms of your skin condition.
D. Treatment for Chronic Hives
What Does A Stress Rash Or Stress Hives Look Like
Stress hives usually appear as swollen bumps called welts or wheals. These bumps can cause redness. However, this redness may not show up easily on dark skin. In darker skin, the bumps may look skin-colored or have subtle redness.
When pressed against, stress hives become blanchable, meaning they briefly turn white. A welt is generally small about 1 to 2 centimeters in size but can combine with other welts to create a larger hive. Stress hives often look oval, round, or ring-like but also can take on irregular shapes.
Hives are very itchy. You may feel a tingling or burning sensation as if youve been bitten by mosquitos. In addition, some welts may disappear only to be replaced by new ones within a few hours.
Stress can also provoke flare-ups, or a return of symptoms, if you already have another skin condition, such as:
If youre experiencing these symptoms, call 911 right away for emergency medical attention.
Recommended Reading: How To Cope With Stress During Pregnancy
Why Does Stress Cause Hives
While it does appear that stress alone can cause hives, the actual reason behind it is not completely clear yet. It’s believed that the hives are a result of the impact that stress has on the immune system. However, scientists do not yet understand the complete connection and more research is needed to understand the cause.
There’s also a secondary connection between stress and hives. There are people who experience hives for unknown reasons that experience stress as a result of it. This could be that they’re stressed about their physical health and why they’re getting hives, or it could be that they’re stressed about their appearance when they have hives.
How Long Do Hives Last?
This is a tough question to answer. Hives can last for just a day, or they could go on for weeks. Many times, as some of your hives are starting to go away, new ones will begin to show up. And, they can come and go over a long period of time. If you find that they continue to come back or you’ve been dealing with them consistently for several days, you may want to talk with your doctor.
You may not know how long your hives are going to be around once you get them, but there are things that you can do to prevent them.
When You Have Flare
Make an appointment to see a board-certified dermatologist, allergist, or primary care doctor. Most people who have hives are otherwise healthy, but its still helpful to see a doctor.A thorough medical exam can help rule out possible causes, such as an infection or medication, which could be causing your hives.Its also possible for a disease, such as a thyroid condition, rheumatoid arthritis, or diabetes to cause hives. If signs indicate that this may be the cause, medical testing can find or rule out these causes.While medications and medical conditions can cause hives, there are many other causes, including foods, insect bites, and pressure on the skin. Sometimes, its not possible to find the cause. If that happens, your dermatologist can still recommend lifestyle changes and prescribe medication that can help reduce your flare-ups.
Take photos of your hives. When your see your dermatologist, you may not have hives. Taking pictures can help your dermatologist make sure you have hives. Other skin conditions can look like hives.
Relieve the itch at home. Itch is common in people who have chronic hives. Here are some ways to get temporary relief:
You May Like: How Do I Manage My Stress
Red Patches And Anxiety: When To Get Treatment
Anxiety can also cause red patches of skin without hives. This reaction occurs due to the dilation of blood vessels underneath the skin. Usually, this type of rash is not itchy or irritated on the skins exterior.
Hives can occur for many reasons other than anxiety or stress. Allergies are the most common cause of hives. Allergies to everything from insect bites to certain foods to medications can trigger an outbreak of hives. Hives may be the only symptom, occurring soon after contact with the offending substance. Or they may be accompanied by other symptoms, like shortness of breath or lightheadedness. If you suspect that an allergy causes your stress hives or hives in general, but you havent yet been diagnosed with one, contact your doctor.
How other underlying causes may appear similar to getting anxiety rash:
What Are The Symptoms Of Stress Hives
Stress hives symptoms include red bumps and swollen areas on your skin that seem to appear almost out of nowhere. They are typically quite itchy and have been known to cause a prickly or burning sensation – especially if touched. Stress hives can appear on any part of your body and can vary in size from as small as the eraser on a pencil to as large as a dinner plate. Stress hives, like a typical hives rash, have been known to spread from place to place, and smaller areas of hives can blend together to create larger areas known as plaques. These stress hives symptoms can easily be treated with the right over the counter medication.
Don’t Miss: What Is Good For Anxiety And Stress
How Long Do Stress Hives Last
Stress hives are short-lived you may have hives at night gone in the morning. Stress hives usually last less than 24 hours, but the problem is, they can reappear if you dont treat the causal factor. In such cases, where hives keep reappearing, it is highly recommended that consult a dermatologist.
The next thing that may come to your mind is hive scars. Do hives leave scars behind? The good news is, NO. Stress hives are not only short-lived they dont leave any scars.
Does Stress Cause Hives
Yes, and hives are one of the most prevalent stress reactions.
These puffy, raised welts can vary significantly in size, shape, and itchiness. Those with hives usually only experience them for less than 24 hours and go away on their own. You can use over-the-counter antihistamines to reduce itchiness, puffiness, and the overall discomfort of an outbreak.
Hives also trigger due to reactions to a specific medication, food, and other allergens, so its recommended to see your doctor for a diagnosis.
Also Check: Does Stress Cause Stomach Pain
Anxiety Can Make Your Rash Worse
Many of those with anxiety see a rash and respond in ways that are counterproductive to its treatment. For example:
- They may cover it up with long sleeves preventing it from breathing.
- They may try to wash their skin too much, leading to skin irritation.
- They may experience more anxiety because of their anxiety rash, leading to a longer lasting rash.
Its important to understand your own anxiety and how you react to it before you can effectively treat it.
Anxiety has a profound effect on the body more than we used to believe. Rashes are yet another example of an anxiety problem that looks like a physical problem. Control your anxiety, and you can control your rashes.
Was this article helpful?
Also Check: How Can I Stop Stressing
Why Do I Have Hives
As noted, hives can be simply due to stress and the bodys biochemical reaction to that stress. The hormones released in the body when you get stressed can sometimes be enough to trigger an immune response that looks a lot like an allergic reaction. Of course, hives can also be caused by actual allergies to something you have been exposed to that your body perceives as a threat, such as fragrances in a new laundry detergent or an insect bite.
Also Check: What To Eat To Reduce Stress
Most People With Hives Do Not Need Tests
Tests are sometimes done when hives go on for long periods, or when unusual symptoms are occurring around the same time. This is to exclude other diseases, which may appear as hives first, and other conditions later. If hives are associated with high fever, bruising, bleeding into the skin, purple lumps that last for several days, or sore joints, a doctors appointment should be arranged promptly.
Allergy testing is performed when the history suggests an allergic cause.
Common Signs & Symptoms
Symptoms of hives can include:
- Swelling of the surface of the skin into red or skin-colored welts with clearly defined edges.
- Wheals are typically round or oval and can get bigger, spread, and join together to form larger areas of flat, raised skin.
- Wheals can also change shape, disappear, and reappear within minutes or hours.
- You know you have hives when you press the center of a wheal and it turns white. This is called blanching.
Hives can appear on any area of the body, especially on the trunk, thighs, upper arms and face.
Also Check: What Should You Do When You Are Stressed
What Do Kids Have To Be Stressed About
Youd be surprised to learn the amount of stress kids are exposed to these days. Depending on your childs age and personality, the amount of stress and the way he or she deals with it varies. Generally, stress in young children is set off by changes. These might include:
- Discord in the family
- Stressed parents or family members
Young children need to feel safe and secure, and when they dont, they get stressed out.
Stressors for older kids come from other age-related sources:
- Relationships with peers
- Moves to a new home or school
What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Hives
The hallmark red raised welts are the main sign of hives. The welts can:
- have a pale center
- change shape and location in a matter of hours
- be tiny or as big as a dinner plate
- itch, sting, or cause a burning sensation
Someone who also has angioedema might have puffiness, blotchy redness, swelling, or large bumps around the eyes, lips, hands, feet, genitals, or throat. Other symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, or belly pain.
Rarely, a person with hives and angioedema can also get anaphylactic shock. Signs of anaphylactic shock include breathing trouble, a drop in blood pressure, dizziness, or a loss of consciousness .
You May Like: What Can You Do To Get Rid Of Stress
You May Like: Where To Buy Natrol Stress And Anxiety