Urticaria Day 2021: everything you should know about this skin condition

Urticaria Day

Urticaria Day 2021: everything you should know about this skin condition

It’s almost October 1st again, which means Urticaria Day is just around the corner. This day is a great time to highlight a condition people don’t talk about enough.

So we thought today we’d answer some frequently asked questions about this common ailment, as well as sharing how you can get involved in this year’s event, building awareness and sharing your support.

What is urticaria?

Urticaria is a skin affliction which you might more commonly know as hives, weals, welts, and nettle rash. It involves raised, extremely itchy rashes and bumps on the skin.

These rashes might be present on an isolated part of the body or spread across larger areas. They can also vary from being a few millimetres in size to being around the size of a hand. 

The condition has two varieties: acute and chronic urticaria. The former is when the rash clears completely within six weeks, while the latter is if the rash persists for more than six weeks.

Who does it affect?

Urticaria is a common condition that affects around 1 in 5 people at some point in their lives. Most frequently, it’s experienced by children, women aged 30-60, and those with a previous history of allergies.

What causes it?

Urticaria appears when something triggers the body to produce high levels of histamine and other chemical messengers. This causes the blood vessels to open and leak – causing redness and itchiness, respectively.

Triggers might include an allergic reaction, infection, heat/cold exposure, or certain medications. Caffeine, alcohol, stress, and warm temperatures can also make symptoms worse.

Can it be treated?

If you experience urticaria, and your symptoms don’t go away within 48 hours, you’ll want to speak with your GP. The same goes for anything you find distressing, distracting from your daily life, or appearing in combination with other symptoms.

In milder cases, rashes will usually clear on their own within a few days. But you can always take over-the-counter antihistamines to relieve some of the itching and discomfort.

What is Urticaria Day?

Taking place every October 1st since 2014, Urticaria Day is all about building awareness, establishing communities, and showing solidarity with those struggling with urticaria. 

A lot of people find their symptoms distressing, embarrassing, or isolating, making it even more important to encourage widespread education on the condition, its cause, and its prevalence.

To get involved, why not share your experience with others? If you haven’t experienced it yourself, you could take some time to learn the key facts or share information using #WorldUrticariaDay.

Urticaria is an incredibly common condition that will impact many of us throughout our lives. And because of this, it warrants greater conversation and awareness. To read more, you can check out some of our previous posts in honour of Urticaria Day here and here.

If you believe an allergy might be triggering your urticaria flare-ups, or are suffering any other symptoms of a reaction, get in touch with the London Allergy and Immunology Centre to book an allergy test. Call us today on 02031 433 449. And to show your support for Urticaria Day, head over to the official website to find out how you can help.

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