Hives: What are the usual causes?

Fact Checked

Hives has been associated with allergies. Most believe that a certain food is the culprit for the skin reaction, while others might be using a detergent or soap. In most circumstances, many individuals tried to avoid the potential triggers, but hives typically persists.

Common causes of hives

It is surprising to note that while allergies might be the issue, the other potential causes for the skin rash are more prevalent. In most cases, the trigger for the rash that lasts less than 6 weeks is different than what causes hives that persists longer.

Allergic reactions

Allergic reactions especially to medications and foods are common causes for acute hives. Essentially, the rash that manifest after consumption of certain foods typically occurs within a few minutes up to a few hours of eating the food.

The reactions to medications might occur after the initial dose or not until the medication has been used for a week or two.

Allergic reactions especially to medications and foods are common causes for acute hives.

Viral infections

The usual cause of the acute type particularly among children is a viral infection. This might be true if the child has not experienced any evident illness. The acute type can be associated to other infections such as urinary tract infections, athlete’s foot and strep throat.

Chronic infections

When it comes to chronic infections such as sinus infections, viral hepatitis and urinary tract infections, it can lead to chronic hives. Based on studies conducted, it reveals that an infection with the Helicobacter pylori which is a bacteria linked with stomach ulcers is also associated with the chronic skin condition.


Always bear in mind that stress is also a usual cause that both acute and chronic hives share. An individual might not feel evidently stressed but the body is, especially if he/she is too busy. Life stressors that triggers the development of the rashes might be negative or positive.

Aside from stress, the causes of the chronic type are relatively different if compared to the cause of the acute type.

Metabolic diseases

Metabolic diseases such as high or low thyroid function, kidney disease or liver disease might be the underlying cause of chronic hives. Additionally, it seems that a high percentage of individuals without an evident trigger for the skin conditions actually have an autoimmune disease which is a condition where the immune system assaults the healthy tissues including the skin.

Using certain medications particularly non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are also linked with chronic hives.

Was this post helpful?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top

  • All content is reviewed by a medical professional and / sourced to ensure as much factual accuracy as possible.

  • We have strict sourcing guidelines and only link to reputable websites, academic research institutions and medical articles.

  • If you feel that any of our content is inaccurate, out-of-date, or otherwise questionable, please contact us through our contact us page.

The information posted on this page is for educational purposes only.
If you need medical advice or help with a diagnosis contact a medical professional