Most instances of hives resolve themselves over four days to a few weeks without treatment, but for more problematic cases consult with your healthcare professional to identify any allergens or underlying health issues that may be triggering the problem.
Your doctor may want to conduct a test such as skin prick or blood tests, or recommend an exclusion diet followed by food challenges to try and pinpoint any food allergies. As it's not generally possible to diagnose patients who are experiencing an allergic reaction, testing may usually only be undertaken when the outbreak is severe or long lasting.
If a food allergy (or allergies) is identified, take steps to exclude the offending foods from your diet.
Other factors that may aggravate or trigger the condition (and consequently should be avoided) include
- Spicy foods
- Food colourings such as tartrazine, flavourings such as salicylates, and preservatives such as sulfites
- Tight clothing or belts
Take steps to reduce stress, for example by practising meditation or yoga.
To offer relief during outbreaks try applying cold compresses or have a cold shower, this may help soothe the affected area.