According to Harvard Medical School, up to 20% of us will develop hives at some point in our lives. There are many medical causes of hives on the scalp, so it’s vital to determine the underlying reason(s) for the problem.
Hives (urticaria) is a skin condition that can arise on your head (or body) at any time. It leads to red welts that can be itchy. In layman’s terms, hives are a breakout rash that occurs when your body experiences an allergic reaction (an overload of histamine) to ‘something’ that it dislikes.
Here are some facts about hives:
In this guide, we’re going to examine the reasons why hives appear on the scalp. You’ll also learn the facts and how it can be successfully treated (if necessary). Finally, we’ll look at skin conditions that are confused for hives.
Table of Contents:
Hives appear when histamine and other allergy-inducing compounds are released from cells that are found in the skin. Histamine causes fluid to leak from the local blood vessels, leading to the swelling. This results in hives on the scalp and other parts of the body.
Hives fall into two categories:
Since hives are so common and acute urticaria, by definition, resolves itself in most cases, physicians do not spend much time evaluating the reason for hives. This would be different if your scalp were to become infected or irritated and cause further problems.
As mentioned previously, there is no single cause for ordinary hives. A breakout can occur for many reasons. But fully understanding the risk factors, if any, is vital for any skin condition.
Some scalp hives can be caused by specific medications. This happens when the medication has been taken for a few weeks before the breakout.
If a medication is implicated, it’s essential that you stop taking it straight away. This helps to ascertain the precise cause.
There are no major risk factors or concerns. It’s only if hives become infected, bleed or seep that medical assistance should be sought.
Chronic hives last for longer than ordinary hives. In some cases, medical professionals may perform lab testing to get to the root of the problem.
To establish what’s causing chronic hives on the scalp, it may be required that you strip back on all consumables. This involves cutting out certain types of medication or food so that you can ascertain whether they are acting as a trigger or not.
In some cases, there are rare forms of chronic urticaria. This can be produced when the patient produces antibodies to fight against molecules on the surface of their own mast cells. There are tests available to identify this type of hives (if required).
Heat hives occur through everyday environmental stimuli such as sunlight, water, cold, heat, and exercise. Dermographism, literally meaning ‘skin writing,’ is a common cause of physical urticaria.
This is an exaggerated form of what happens to anyone when their skin is scratched or rubbed. A red welt forms at the site of the scratch and can be painful and itchy. These are raised, itchy red welts where adjacent flares appear wherever the skin is scratched or clothing rub against the skin.
Two types of itching can occur as a result of hives. The different types of itching (pruritus) are split into two distinct areas:
They can be due to chronic stress or tension in your life. It’s the stress that causes your body’s immune system to falter. They appear as red, raised, and swollen areas on the skin that seem to appear suddenly. Stress hives are also known medically as a stress rash or stress bumps.
Stress-induced hives tend to be incredibly itchy, and some people report experiencing a burning or stinging sensation wherever they appear. They will go away by themselves once your stress levels have settled down. Obviously, you’ll need to make lifestyle adjustments for that to happen.
When you’re stressed, your body sends histamine into the body to fight off what is affecting you – the stress! According to WebMD, your body experiences an allergic reaction to stress, and this is why hives on the scalp appear.
A diet that lacks the essential nutrients and vitamins needed by your skin can lead to hives. So, it’s suggested that you eat a well-balanced and healthy diet to maintain your overall health.
Fatty acids such as flaxseeds, walnuts, and salmon, along with reducing coffee intake and alcohol, can be highly beneficial. And keeping yourself adequately hydrated by drinking plenty of water is advantageous to the skin on your scalp. It prevents other scalp conditions, such as a dry scalp.
You may be sensitive to one of the foods listed below:
Cut out any food on this list that may be causing a flare-up. You may want to try each food group at a time to best establish the reason.
If you don’t keep on top of your hygiene by washing and conditioning your hair regularly, chances are, your scalp will begin to suffer the effects over time. Because of the build-up of environmental dirt, oils, and harsh beauty products, hives can readily occur.
Poor hygiene can result in short-term scalp problems. If you don’t think that you’re cleaning your hair enough, consider creating a weekly schedule. A schedule will mean that you are more likely to stick to a routine and keep your hair clean.
Some tips include the following:
Stings and bites from insects are common. Usually, a breakout of hives caused by an insect bite only affects that specific area. However, it can spread, which is a common characteristic.
Insects that are most troublesome include:
Hives are the most common systemic symptom of an insect bite or sting. They appear as irregular, raised, red blotchy areas on the skin. With an insect bite, they tend to be very itchy.
There are many things found lurking in nature that can cause skin problems. Nature is beautiful, but it also holds many dangers. If you are prone to sensitive skin and breakouts of hives anywhere on your body, the outdoors could be what’s causing it.
Plants, leaves and certain types of fungi can all cause allergic reactions. Before you head out for a walk, you may wish to take an antihistamine.
The following list of items are known agitators:
Believe it or not, there is a chance that you could be allergic to your own sweat. If you experience an outbreak of hives on your scalp, or anywhere else on your body for that matter, you may want to consider taking an antihistamine before doing anything that’s physically demanding.
If you have chronic hives, you may want to ask your doctor or medical professional about getting tested for the antigen ‘heliobacter pylori’. Many individuals go undiagnosed and don’t realize that hives are one of the primary symptoms.
It is a common type of bacteria that is found in the digestive tract.
According to Dr. Eugene Tan of Waikato Hospital, Helicobacter pylori tend to attack the stomach lining and can cause ulcers and have other knock-on effects. Usually harmless, the bacteria are responsible for the majority of ulcers found in the stomach and small intestine.
Additionally, the most commo0n symptom of this bacteria is chronic hives on the scalp.
As long as you don’t have an underlying long-term medical issue or infection, hives will clear up on its own over time.
You should consider visiting your doctor if your scalp becomes:
The goal of treating ordinary hives is to relieve the symptoms while allowing your body to heal itself. The most commonly used treatment is an antihistamine. Most antihistamines are available without a prescription at local pharmacies. But, taking these tablets can lead to drowsiness.
They can be taken up to three times a day. However, because they cause drowsiness, it is often advised that they are taken at bedtime. Those who take them should be especially careful and be sure they are fully alert before driving or participating in other activities requiring mental concentration.
Take a note of the tips below if you want to keep your scalp hive free;
Additionally, massaging with essential oils or some light, chemical-free cream can also be beneficial. Alternatively, use a cold compress to take the heat out of your scalp. If your scalp breaks out after using a particular product, you should ensure that you avoid it in the future.
When you have hives on the scalp, it can be an uncomfortable and itchy sensation. It is essential that you take great care when it comes to washing your hair, particularly the skin surrounding your hairline.
To prevent flare-ups and aggravation, consider using a herbal or home remedy. Avoid using shampoos, conditioners, and other hair care products that are full of chemicals. Alternatively, use products that are as natural as possible.
Your scalp is a sensitive part of your body at the best of times. It’s, therefore, essential that you treat it with products that are kind to skin.
The skin is our body’s largest organ. It can also be sensitive and react adversely to unusual substances that it’s not used to. While various other rashes may look like similar to hives, they most likely aren’t associated in any way and should be treated differently.
Most other rashes and skin conditions cause different symptoms that vary in severity. In extreme conditions, certain rashes may need to have a small specimen of skin removed and examined under the microscope. This is known as a biopsy.
Is your scalp breaking out regularly? A severe breakout on the scalp can come out of nowhere and at any time. But, if you notice a certain level of regularity with your breakouts, there could be an underlying reason.
Keep a note of when and where the breakouts take place (if in other places than your scalp). Due to heat at night, your scalp may be a lot itchier than it is during the day. Before your head hits the pillow, have a shower or bath. Wash and detangle your hair as this can be soothing.
Knowing when and why your scalp breaks out can be helpful in resolving the issue.
Few things are more distracting than an itchy and blotchy scalp. If you take the time to establish the cause, you’ll be able to choose the right remedy. Conducting your own research will allow you to speak to your doctor with a greater understanding about hives on the scalp.
Copyright 2018 by DryScalpGone.