How Long Do Hives From An Allergic Reaction Last
The duration of hives can be hard to predict. They might last minutes, or they might recur for months or years, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. But generally, you can expect symptoms to clear up in less than 24 hours without treatment.
That said, sometimes new hives emerge as quickly as the old ones disappear, says Dr. Marks-Cogan. If you cant identify the cause, you might accidentally keep exposing yourself.
What Kinds Of Allergies Cause Hives
Hives are a type of immune reaction that develops very quickly, says Blair Murphy Rose, MD, a board-certified dermatologist based in New York. The most common allergic triggers of hives are medication and food allergies, says Dr. Rose. Common medications linked to hives include:
- NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and aspirin. This includes prescription NSAIDs such as celecoxib .
- Antibiotics such as penicillin
- Sulfonylureas, which are generally prescribed for type 2 diabetes. Common varieties include glyburide , glimepiride and glipizide .
The list above is not exhaustive, of course. And medications arent the only cause of hives. Many things can spark your bodys immune system to overreact and create an itchy rash.
Airborne allergens, such as pollen, animal dander, dust mites and mold, are common agitators, says Katie Marks-Cogan, MD. Shes a board-certified allergist who practices in Los Angeles. She also notes that contact allergens, such as saliva from cats or dogs, can cause hives.
Infections and insect bites and stings might also be responsible. And then there is the list of physical causes. For some people, heat or sunlight can do it. So can pressure or rubbing from clothing. In some people, even vibrations can spark hives.
Another condition related to hives is angioedema, or rapid swelling, just beneath the skin. This tends to be more painful than itchy, says Dr. Marks-Cogan. It usually occurs in the lips, mouth, eyelids, face, larynx, extremities and genitalia, she says.
Can I Use An Hsa Or Fsa To Buy Allegra Products
You may be able to use your HSA or FSA tax-preferred savings account to purchase certain OTC products, including Allegra® Hives. The passage of the CARES Act by Congress includes provisions to restore OTC eligibility under tax-preferred HSA and FSA accounts. Plan details vary, so save your receipt and check with your benefits or health provider for eligibility.
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Common Questions About Loratadine
Loratadine is a type of medicine called an antihistamine.
When you come into contact with something you have an allergy to, such as pollen, animal hair or fur, house dust or insect bites, your body produces a chemical called histamine.
Usually, histamine is a useful substance but in an allergic reaction it causes unpleasant symptoms including itchy, watery eyes, running or blocked nose, sneezing and skin rashes.
Loratadine blocks the effects of histamine and so reduces these symptoms.
Loratadine is a non-drowsy antihistamine, so it does not make you feel as sleepy as other medicines like it.
You should start to feel better within an hour.
It depends on why you’re taking it.
You may only need to take loratadine for a short time or as a one-off dose. If you have a reaction to an insect bite, you may only need to take loratadine for a day or two.
You may need to take it for longer if you’re taking it to prevent hay fever symptoms when the pollen count is high.
Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you’re not sure how long you need to take loratadine for.
Loratadine is unlikely to do you any harm if you take it for a long time. However, it’s best to take it only for as long as you need to.
It’s best not to drink alcohol while you’re taking loratadine, as it can make you feel sleepy.
You can eat and drink normally while taking loratadine.
Loratadine is classed as a non-drowsy antihistamine but it’s still possible to feel sleepy after taking it.
Tips for when you’re outside
What Are The Best Treatments For Hives
When it comes to treating hives, doctors typically use a combination of medication and non-medication options. Here are some to consider:
- Gently rub on a hydrocortisone topical, such as Cortaid®.
- An antihistamine such as diphenhydramine . You can take these every 4 to 6 hours, but they could make you drowsy.
- Oral allergy medications can help. Over-the-counter options recommended by Dr. Marks-Cogan include cetirizine , levocetirizine , fexofenadine and loratadine .
- A histamine type 2 receptor blocker may need to be added for some people. Examples of this medication include famotidine and cimetidine . You can take them 1 or 2 times per day. These medications are most often used for heartburn, but we also use them to help control hives, says Dr. Marks-Cogan.
- Cover the rash with a cool washcloth or with ice cubes wrapped in a towel. This can soothe itching, says the American Academy of Dermatology Association. You can do this several times throughout the day.
- For more severe hives, doctors may prescribe a steroid such as prednisone or methylprednisolone .
- For chronic hives that dont respond to the above treatments, Dr. Marks-Cogan says a biologic medication such as omalizumab may need to be prescribed.
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Sometimes Hives Require Immediate Medical Attention Heres When To Act Quickly
If you have any breathing issues, you should seek immediate medical attention. Hives are often associated with a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis and a condition called angioedema, where tissue in your face, lips, tongue, throat and even genitals can swell. Both conditions warrant a trip to the emergency room.
Also, if you have abdominal pain or fever associated with hives, seek immediate medical care, Elmariah says.
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What Helps Hives Besides Antihistamines
Hives generally go away in a few hours, but some people may live with chronic hives or regular episodes. Here are a few proven home remedies that can help soothe your itchy skin:
- Use a cold compress:Apply an ice pack or washcloth soaked in cold water to your skin for 10 minutes to provide rapid relief from pain and itchiness. You may repeat it several times throughout the day until symptoms subside.
- Use anti-itch cream: Calamine lotion, menthol, capsaicin or hydrocortisone creams are the most effective in quickly relieving skin discomfort. Other topical anesthetics such as lidocaine cream can provide relief against long term itching or pain.
- Take a cool bath: Heat can make itching worse while cool water can soothe the skin.
- Avoid triggers: If you are repeatedly experiencing episodes of hives, keep a symptom diary to help you identify foods, allergens , chemicals, activities or medications that might be provoking allergic reactions. Avoid any triggers that you discover in your diary.
Lastly, to learn more about itchy skin and hives, read Curist team member Waverlyâs story about her experiences diagnosing chronic hives and treating itchy skin.
What Is The Difference Between Acute Vs Chronic Hives
The main differences between acute and chronic hives are how long the symptoms last and what their respective triggers are. Acute hives are short-term they can last for less than a day or up to six weeks. They can be triggered by coming into contact with an allergen such as food, animal dander, insect bite, latex or pollen. Acute hives can also occur from non-allergic causes such as heat, exercise or stress. Being able to identify and avoid these triggers can help prevent this allergic reaction from occurring.
Chronic hives, on the other hand, can stick around for a longer period of time . Most chronic hives are idiopathic, meaning that the exact cause is unknown. Only a small percentage of chronic hives are due to an allergic reaction.
Regardless of whether you have acute or chronic hives , antihistamines will be your mainstay of treatment options to help relieve symptoms.
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How Are Hives Treated Or Managed
Most of the time, hives go away without treatment. Your healthcare provider might recommend medications and at-home care to help you feel better and lower your chances of having hives again. Treatments include:
- Allergy medications: Medicines called antihistamines block histamines effects. They can be taken orally or topically . Antihistamines relieve itching from hives and make allergic reactions go away or become less severe. Some antihistamines react quickly, such as diphenhydramine . Depending on how severe the hives are, your healthcare provider may recommend daily allergy medications, like loratadine , fexofenadine , cetirizine or levocetirizine .
Allergy shots: For hard-to-treat chronic hives, your healthcare provider may discuss monthly injections of drugs that block allergic reactions. People with severe allergies make too much IgE. These injections block your immune system from making IgE.
Complications of hives
Anyone who has a severe acute allergic reaction could have life-threatening swelling of the airways your throat and lungs. This condition is known as anaphylaxis. It can potentially close off the airways, resulting in death.
Anaphylaxis is often triggered by a severe allergic reaction to a certain food, like peanuts and tree nuts, or to a bee sting. If you have anaphylaxis, you need an immediate shot of epinephrine, such as injectable epinephrine .
Coverage And Cost Comparison Of Benadryl Vs Claritin
Benadryl can be purchased as an over-the-counter drug. Most Medicare and insurance plans may not cover Benadryl for this reason. Benadryl is widely available in its generic form diphenhydramine. Many pharmacies, grocery stores, and big-box retailers also carry diphenhydramine in their own store brand. The cost of Benadryl can be up to $18. If prescribed by your doctor, Benadryl can cost under $2 with a SingleCare coupon.
Claritin comes in boxes with quantities ranging from 5 tablets to 100 tablets. It is purchased over-the-counter as brand-name Claritin or generic loratadine. Most Medicare and insurance plans may not cover Claritin so its best to check with your insurance. The average retail cost of Claritin is around $30. With a prescription, the SingleCare cost is $4-$10
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How Much Clariton Can You Take For Hives
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What Is The Best Antihistamine For Hives
There is not a single best antihistamine for hives, it depends on which antihistamine works for you. Commonly, people often try Benadryl for hives and while it is effective, it has a significant tradeoff – Benadryl is very sedating. So Benadryl may be effective for acute hives, Benadryl is not appropriate for chronic hives. Instead, a newer antihistamine with less sedating side effects like levocetirizine, would be better antihistamine for treating hives.
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Why Is This Medication Prescribed
Loratadine is used to temporarily relieve the symptoms of hay fever and other allergies. These symptoms include sneezing, runny nose, and itchy eyes, nose, or throat. Loratadine is also used to treat itching and redness caused by hives. However, loratadine does not prevent hives or other allergic skin reactions. Loratadine is in a class of medications called antihistamines. It works by blocking the action of histamine, a substance in the body that causes allergic symptoms.
Loratadine is also available in combination with pseudoephedrine . This monograph only includes information about the use of loratadine alone. If you are taking the loratadine and pseudoephedrine combination product, read the information on the package label or ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
Conditions Treated By Benadryl And Claritin
Benadryl and Claritin are both FDA-approved to treat symptoms of allergies.
Both allergy medications can treat allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever. Allergic rhinitis is a group of symptoms that affects the nose such as congestion and sneezing. Both drugs can treat allergic conjunctivitis which leads to inflammation and itchiness of the eyes. Antihistamines like Benadryl or Claritin can also treat skin hives and itching from allergies.
Because Benadryl has sedating properties, it is often used alone or in combination with other drugs for insomnia. Its sometimes used as a single dose to help those with trouble sleeping.
Benadryl may also be used to treat symptoms of Parkinsons disease such as stiffness and tremors. For those who experience motion sickness, Benadryl can be used to prevent nausea, vomiting, and dizziness.
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Causes Of Localized Hives
- Irritants. Hives just in one spot are usually due to skin contact with an irritant. They are not an allergy.
- Plants. Many plants cause skin reactions. Sap from evergreens can cause local hives.
- Pollen. Playing in the grass can cause hives on exposed skin.
- Pet Saliva. Some people get hives where a dog or cat has licked them.
- Food. Some children get hives if a food is rubbed on the skin. An example could be a fresh fruit. Some babies get hives around their mouth from drooling a new food.
- Insect Bite. Local hives are a reaction to the insect’s saliva. Can be very large without being an allergy.
- Bee Sting. This is a reaction to the bee’s venom. Can be very large without being an allergy.
- Localized hives are not caused by drugs, infections or swallowed foods. These get into the bloodstream and cause widespread hives.
Causes Of Widespread Hives
- Viral Infection. The most common cause of hives all over the body is viral infections. Research has confirmed this. Other symptoms such as a fever, cough or diarrhea are also present. The hives may last 3 days. This is not an allergy.
- Bacterial Infection. Some bacterial infections can also cause hives. A common example is Strep. Hives are also seen with bladder infections.
- Drug Reaction. An example is a penicillin rash. Most rashes that start while taking an antibiotic are viral rashes. Allergy tests are normal 90% of the time. Only 10% turn out to be a drug allergy.
- Food Reaction. May be an allergy or a coincidence. If the food is a high risk one , consult an allergist. Hives from foods usually resolve in 6 hours. Hives from infections last for days. Only 3% of hives are due to a food.
- Bee Sting. Widespread hives after a sting may be part of a serious allergic reaction. Need to consult an allergist.
- Anaphylactic Reaction . The sudden onset of hives with trouble breathing or swallowing. This is a severe allergic reaction to an allergic food or drug. Most often begins within 30 minutes of swallowing the substance. Always within 2 hours of exposure.
- Unknown. Over 30% of the time, the cause of hives is not found.
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What Should I Know About Storage And Disposal Of This Medication
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature, away from excess heat and moisture and away from light. Use the orally disintegrating tablets immediately after you remove them from the blister package, and within 6 months after you open the outer foil pouch. Write the date that you open the foil pouch on the product label so that you will know when 6 months have passed.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location â one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach.
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDA’s Safe Disposal of Medicines website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
Complementary And Alternative Medicines
While many complementary and alternative medicines are used to treat acute and chronic hives, the evidence supporting their use remains weak. Not only may some have no effect, but a few may also end up aggravating symptoms.
One such example is turmeric, a spice widely touted as a hives remedy. Studies have shown that curcumin, the substance that gives turmeric its yellow color, can trigger skin irritation and hives in some people.
If you choose to use a natural remedy, speak with your doctor first to ensure that it doesn’t interact with any medications you may be taking.
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Cautions With Other Medicines
Some medicines affect how loratadine works or can increase the chances of you having side effects.
Tell your doctor if you’re taking:
- amiodarone, a medicine used to treat an irregular heartbeat
- cimetidine, an indigestion medicine
- erythromycin, an antibiotic
- ketoconazole, a medicine to treat fungal infections
- any medicine that makes you feel sleepy, gives you a dry mouth or makes it difficult for you to pee taking loratadine might make these side effects worse