Urticaria Day 2019 – The psychological effects of urticaria

psychological effects of urticaria

Urticaria Day 2019 – The psychological effects of urticaria

October 1st marks the sixth annual Urticaria Day; a day to spread awareness about this surprisingly common condition. Most of us probably know the physical symptoms of urticaria – or hives as you might call it. But there can also be significant psychological effects of urticaria. 

Urticaria often presents as a rash, with patches of red, raised bumps appearing on the skin. While a lot of the time these rashes will disappear in a few days, in 30% of people an attack will recur over months or even years. When the problem persists, it can have a big impact on someone’s mental wellbeing, causing embarrassment, anxiety, or being a distraction from daily life.


If someone suffers from urticaria, it can lead to a lot of embarrassment. If they have a rash on their arm, they may be scared to walk down the street in a T-shirt – even if it’s the peak of summer. They don’t want the attention being drawn to them and may be ashamed about the rash. It’s especially hard if passersby aren’t educated on the condition as they might stare at it, leaving the sufferer feeling even worse. 

A sufferer may even feel so self-conscious about their hives they become hesitant to leave the house or continue their daily activities. 

Anxiety or depression

Urticaria can cause a sufferer’s self-esteem to plummet. It may trigger anxiety about being out in public or even feelings of depression. If these are already struggles they face, a bout of urticaria could make them even worse.

If someone is ashamed or embarrassed about their rash, they’ll likely turn these feelings inward and blame themselves. It could be detrimental to their mental health in all sorts of ways.


If someone’s worrying about their rash or constantly itching it, they won’t be able to properly focus. At work, a sufferer may be distracted and end up falling behind. Or a student at school may struggle to focus in class. 

Urticaria can have plenty of effects aside from the obvious physical ones. That’s why Urticaria Day is so important. It lets sufferers know they’re not alone and helps educate everyone else so we can all be a bit more supportive and understanding. After all, this year’s slogan is “Who cares? UCARE!”. And whether we directly suffer or not, we should all care about urticaria and its far-reaching effects.

If you think you’re having a flare-up of urticaria, arrange an appointment with one of our UCARE (Urticaria Centre of Reference and Excellence) experts. Get in touch on 02031 433 449.

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