Have you experienced a reddish rash with severe itching? That’s called hives or urticaria in medical terms, which is a common skin complaint during pregnancy. But are you wondering why and how it occurs? Hives usually occur due to an allergic reaction to some food, medication, or some other factor or trigger.
Hives or a rash appears mostly when Histamine is released in our blood or related basophils, a type of WBCs are more active in your blood stream. In pregnancy, hormones also could be a reason for the outbreak of hives.
Urticaria or hives aren’t so harmful as such to either you or the baby, but it’s too uncomfortable and frustrating due to severe itching. Hives usually also migrate from one area to another after some time. It also at times has some local swelling.
- What Causes Hives in Pregnancy?
- Treatment of hives during pregnancy
What Causes Hives in Pregnancy?
The exact causes for the appearance of hives during pregnancy or otherwise isn’t known. The major reason for pregnancy hives can be due to the multiple changes your body is going through when you are expecting. But let’s see some other possibilities for the occurrence of hives or these red rashes.
- As these changes are unknown to your body and system, especially if it’s your first child, then the immune system releases a large amount of a substance called histamine in your blood stream to correct it. At times, this histamine makes hives appear on your body, face etc. If you are pregnant with twins, then your chances of getting hives are much higher.
- Hormonal imbalances also happen in your body when you are expecting a baby. At times, your body views these changes as threat or infection and as a reflex, it releases some antibodies to fight it and that causes hives.
- But you must be careful as it might be a serious condition called PUPP. Haven’t heard of it? PUPP or Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques typically happen in the third trimester of a pregnancy. This condition is very uncomfortable and you need immediate medical advice in this case.
- It could be due to some food allergy such as an allergic reaction to eggs, chocolates, nuts, shellfish, or soy
- Allergic reaction caused due to food additives, preservatives or artificial colours
- Reaction to some medication
- Pollen allergy or some trigger like extreme hot or humid temperature
- Extreme stress or anxiety can also cause the body to react in a peculiar way and hives to appear
- It could also be some viral or bacterial infection or due to an insect bite or sting
- Excessive perspiration or allergy to some synthetic materials can also cause hives to appear on your body
- Low immunity when you are pregnant causes you to be prone to allergies and imbalances
Treatment Of Hives During Pregnancy
Pregnancy hives can be treated with some common over-the-counter medicines like antihistamines. But beware as antihistamines are not to be taken without consultation and especially during the first trimester of the pregnancy. If you do not prefer to take unnecessary drugs in your pregnancy, then you could try some natural home remedies to treat this. Some of these remedies are mentioned below:
- Cut an Aloe Vera leaf and squeeze out the gel. Apply this gel on the hives. Aloe Vera is very helpful in reducing inflammation, itching and pain.
- Having a cup of green tea to detox and cleanse your system will also help.7
- Note what you ate and see if any food was the trigger. Ensure to cut that food item from your diet.
- Apply fresh pineapple juice or pulp on the hives. Bromelain, which is a compound found in pineapples, has anti-inflammatory properties and helps cure hives.
- Burdock root is a powerful herb that has detoxifying and anti-bacterial properties. Sip on burdock root tea to help reduce swelling and clean the skin.
- Add a cup of baking soda to your bathing water. Baking soda soothes the itch and takes care of any dryness too.
- Turmeric powder paste also is a natural antihistamine an antiseptic and soothes hives very quickly.
- Another remedy that you can find in your kitchen is oatmeal. Adding a cup of oatmeal to your bath water also helps to decrease the inflammation and itchiness.
- For taking care of severe itch and redness, apply a cold compress to the affected areas. This also reduces swelling and pain.
Though pregnancy hives normally disappear within a week of your delivery, in some cases, they could also last for all nine months. But nothing to worry; eat healthy and stay stress-free. Also keep consulting your doctor in case of any strange symptoms.