Urticaria or Hives is a skin disorder that is characterized by rashes on the skin accompanied by severe itching. In today’s world we are all very conscious of the way we look, especially our skin. As such appearance of these hives affects us not just physically but also mentally.
In Ayurveda, Urticaria is known as Sheeta Pitta. The two dosha’s ‘Vatta’ and ‘Kapha’ are disturbed. In combination with ‘Pitta’ it causes redness, swelling and itching of the skin. It is classified as
Acute Urticaria- in this case the symptoms develop suddenly and last for a short time usually less than six weeks. It is caused by insect bites, certain food products, medications or infections. They respond well to antihistamines.
Chronic Urticaria- in this case the symptoms last for a longer duration. It is usually triggered by allergy or factors such as taking a cold bath immediately after exercise, exposure to cold wind etc
- Redness and patches all over the body
- Swelling of the tongue and throat
- Severe Itching
- Taking Cold bath immediately after exercise
- Exposure to cold wind
- Intestinal Worms
- Mental Excitement
- Contact with external irritants like insect bites, nettle, pollens, drugs etc.
Urticaria can be successfullly managed through the age old science of Ayurveda. In Ayurveda the focus is on balancing the ‘Tridoshas’ (Vata, Kapha, Pitta). This is done through the following methods
- Panchakarma- This is required for detoxification of the body. Vamana, Virechana and Nasya are the various modalities used.
- External Therapies- like Abhyangam and Seka
- Internal Medications
- Activities like certain Asanas and Pranayamas, Meditation etc
- Diet Restrictions such as avoiding sour, pungent foods, regular intake of water etc.
- Lifestyle changes