The best natural remedies for hives are those that keep the patient from scratching and those that cool the inflamed skin. Covering the skin or covering the fingers to prevent scratching, which can make the itching and inflammation worse, is probably the most important part of home care. Cool baths and applications of cold compresses to the skin can also be important in easing the discomfort associated with hives.
Certain natural remedies can be effective at relieving the symptoms of hives until the condition resolves. Hives are welts that appear on the skin in reaction to an allergy, stress, or other trigger. Hives often itch and can be uncomfortable. It is generally not a condition that indicates a more serious illness. In most instances, medical intervention is not necessary.
Bathing in oatmeal, cornstarch, or baking soda is one of the most common natural remedies for hives. The bath can give short-term relief from the itching that often accompanies the skin rash. Take care not to use hot water for a shower or bath, however, because this can exacerbate the symptoms.
Cold compresses of milk or ice cubes wrapped in a towel can also be used as natural remedies for hives. The cold compresses will relieve some of the itching and burning that may accompany the condition. The compresses should be placed on the affected area a few times each day and allowed to stay for about 15 minutes.
Applications of vitamin E, aloe vera, and certain herbal teas may also soothe the itchiness and burning of hives. Herbal teas that are commonly brewed, cooled, and applied to the skin to reduce hives include chamomile, valerian, and peppermint. Applications of these treatments should be made to the affected area a couple times a day.
One of the most effective natural remedies for hives is to take steps to stop scratching the affected skin. Scratching the rash may cause additional inflammation and could lead to infection. Cover the area, if that’s the only way to stop scratching, but do so with loose clothing or a loosely wrapped bandage. It may also be helpful to wear gloves when you are sleeping.
There are times when hives can be more serious. If swelling of the face or throat occurs or if there is nausea or dizziness, the patient should be taken to a physician. If the hives don’t resolve themselves within four weeks, a physician should be consulted.