It would be difficult to come up with a single set of criteria to describe people with hives. This is because hives strikes people of all age groups, genders, nationalities and income levels. Furthermore, hives can be triggered by a wide range of factors: While one person might develop hives in association with a hepatitis infection, another might develop hives in response to the application of pressure on the skin.
Much of the time, medical professionals speak of treating hives and not of curing it. It is also more common for them to speak of hives’ triggers than to speak of its causes. There seems to be an underlying recognition that there is more to the pathology of hives than medical science has been able to uncover. In fact, a large proportion of hives cases are labeled idiopathic because medical professionals are humble enough to admit that they cannot always identify the triggers of hives.
The Frustrations of People with Hives
Sometimes this state of affairs frustrates people with hives. This is especially the case when they have to endure chronic hives for months or years at a time. Hives ordinarily cause mild discomfort, but when they last for months and months, they can wear down even the most patient of people. Furthermore, people with hives of this type can develop complications either because of or despite the treatments they are undergoing. These complications vary considerably. They can lead to pain and incapacitation and might even compromise the immune system.
Worrying about these kinds of complications places a burden on the shoulders of people with hives. Constant worry leads to stress, which can actually exacerbate their hives: The form of hives known as cholinergic hives has been associated with severe stress.
Hives’ complications are not the only cause for worry in patients. Some patients worry because they have no idea what factors might have triggered their hives. Furthermore, they do not know if they will ever find permanent relief from the condition. Often, their best bet is to turn to those who have had similar experiences and to learn from them. Various discussion boards and forums afford them this opportunity.
Belonging to communities of people who have endured similar challenges gives a boost to the morale of many hives patients. They take comfort in the knowledge that they are not alone in their suffering. Additionally, they can learn about alternative approaches to treating hives that just might work for them.