Itchy skin is no fun – but if the itching is accompanied by red (or, in some cases, skin-colored) raised bumps on the skin that turn white when pressed, you've got a bigger problem than the maddening itching: hives. Regular cases of hives last around 24 hours and can be caused by hundreds of triggers, from foods like peanuts, to materials such as latex, to viral infection, to everyday plants you never knew you were allergic to. But no matter what they're caused by, your biggest concern upon discovering a patch of hives is to make them go away, and the quicker the better. If you're looking for natural remedies to shoo those hives away, then here's what you need to know.
No Soda Like Baking Soda... at least when it comes to itchy skin. An old remedy for itchy skin is to create a paste out of water and baking soda and apply it directly to the itchy patch. With this hive cure, the same principle applies. Fill up your tub with cool water – not cold enough to be uncomfortable – and then pour about 5 tablespoons (more or less, depending on how full your tub is) and mix it around until it dissolves. Soak in the water for about twenty minutes to get the full benefit of this itch-blasting, hive-soothing routine.
An Apple a Day… keeps the hives away, to borrow a phrase. Specifically, an apple cider vinegar paste made with cornstarch will help get rid of hives, provided you apply it after a bath or shower, when your skin is the softest. Mix together enough cornstarch and apple cider vinegar to make a moldable paste, and then apply the paste to the patches of hives on your skin. Doing this once every couple of hours will cut down on the itching and inflammation, which makes the short time that the hives are on your skin a little bit more pleasant.
If You Like Piña Coladas… then you're in luck, because one of the main ingredients in piña coladas – pineapple – can help reduce your hives. Pineapples contain bromelain, which is an enzyme that reduces swelling, making this acidic fruit the perfect candidate for a compress. Get some crushed pineapple (you can buy it crushed or crush it yourself; it doesn't matter) and put it in a very thin dishtowel, letting the natural juice of the pineapple make the bag slightly damp as you gather the four corners of the towel and tie them together. Then, place the freshly made compress on the affected area for around 20 minutes. When those 20 minutes are up, you can store away the compress in your fridge for future use, provided you throw it away once the pineapple's a day old.
Once you have treated the hives, you may want to go and see an allergy doctor, such as those at North Texas Allergy, who can discover the source of your hives and prevent breakouts in the future.