Spotlight on Health
Hives are slightly raised, itchy red welts or blotches that tend to appear suddenly. A welt can stand alone or in clusters, and can be smaller than a thumbprint or bigger than the palm of your hand. They can appear anywhere on the body, and can disappear in one place only to show up in another, lasting anywhere from a couple minutes to several days. Affecting an estimated 3 percent of preschool-age kids and 2 percent of older children, hives are produced when an irritant causes our body to produce histamine, which can leak from the blood vessels and pool underneath the skin, leading to welts. For many kids, that histamine release is triggered by allergies to things like nuts, shellfish, eggs, berries, milk, certain antibiotics, or insect bites, but others can get blotchy from exposure to sun, a sudden blast of cold air or exposure to cold water, viral infections, or stress.
Learn more about itchy hives in today’s Spotlight On Health.
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