14 answers

Break Out in hives...food Allergy? Virus? Detergent?

Hi Moms. I am stumped. My son is 2 1/2 years old. Last week he broke out in hives on Tuesday so I thought maybe it was the eggnog shake we had. I gave him bennedryl and they went away. The next day he broke out again (major grapefruit size welt on his leg and many mosquito bite looking hives in patches here and there). Long story short, he is still breaking out. The Dr. said he could be fighting a virus lasting 5-7 days??. It's now been 1 week. Could it be the detergent? I switched to powder Gain but that was a month ago, he didn't react when I first switched. What could this be? Help! He has never broken out like this before.

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My daughter is only allergic to one thing - Gain detergent. I tried it when she was young - and she broke out in hives - all over, especially where her clothes touched her body. I rewashed the clothes, and she recovered quickly. I never used Gain again, and she's been fine. It was odd, though - she's an identical twin, and her sister did not hav the same reaction. I suggest switching to a detergent that is not quite as "fragrant". Good luck!

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My 19 year old broke out in major hives about two months ago. Had to go to ER they were so bad. We think it was honey he took to abate cold/allergy symptoms. ER told me they had seen several kids recently with same thing. Having been allergic all of my life, I have many times been advised to go the "natural" route and broke out in huge hives. I avoid organics for that reason.

Did the pediatrician recommend going to a dermatologist to verify the diagnosis? Our kids also have broken out in hives from viral infections, but they've cleared up pretty quickly.

It can take the body a few weeks to show signs of a reaction to various things (for instance, it takes 4-6 weeks for head lice outbreaks to cause itching on average from the body's reaction to their saliva).

It could be a combination of things. I'd personally ask for a referral to a dermatologist and follow-up with the pediatrician in the meantime. If you give more Benadryl, and it clears-up, chances are there is some kind of allergy you need to address.

Good luck!

DEFINATELY sounds like a food allergy. Is there something he's eaten every single day he's had hives, even if he's had it prevoiusly w/no problems? Food allergies can strike regardless of how many times a person has eaten a food previously. My dd ate strawberry jam almost daily from age 1-2 and shortly after her 2nd bday started breaking out in huge welts from a bite of a berry. She can't even tolerate it in shampoos, etc. now. Same w/palm oil (in many processed foods) and chamomile. One day, fine w/them, another day MAJOR reaction. Try to keep a food diary and see if you can pinpoint what he's been eating daily that could be triggering it. Also,check out Foodlab and TerrifickidsWFA on yahoo groups. They'll be able to give you some wonderful advice on what to look for, etc. Good luck to you! - J.

This happened to my daughter when she was about 2. She just broke out in hives-wasn't a change in diet or anything. They would go away and come back. Whenever I made an appointment at the Dr, they wouldn't be there so I would have to cancel. I finally took pictures so I could show them-they looked like little (some were pretty big) red welts all over her body. We ended up taking her to a pediatric allergist and she went through all the allergy testing-nothing was found. We kept her on Zyrtec for several weeks and then they were gone.

The allergist said she had probably gotten a virus right before the hives started (she did have a runny nose, nothing serious) and that was just her body's reaction. She has never gotten them again-she's 3 now.

Hi C. your best bet is to take him back to the doctor! He/she can recommend a specialist for allergies. Asking for help on the internet may not help that much because every indivdual case is different even thought the symptons maybe the same. So let his doctor be the judge.

Hi C.,
Good Luck, My daughter started with hives about the age of 3. I first thought it was the strawberries she had eaten, but it was her antibiotic. I too thought detergent material etc. She continues to get hives on and off. She has had them from a virus, sweat, environmental etc. Her worst ones were in the summer from age 5 to 9 when she would get them behind her knees and elbows and at times it would spread up and down her leg or arm. Showering midday seemed to minimize the outbreak, but never eliminate it. She takes a daily dose of Clarinex and it seems to keep them at bay. She is now 17 and does not take it daily, but can judge herself when she needs it and continues with it as needed.
Hope this helps, I'm not sure an allergist will help all that much. We never went, just have Clarinex perscribed by the pediatrician. We tried several different allergy medicines before we found out that Clarinex worked the best for her. Bennedryl made her hyper so we could not take it. The one time we did she was up for 36 hours straight!!! at the age of 4.

My daughter is only allergic to one thing - Gain detergent. I tried it when she was young - and she broke out in hives - all over, especially where her clothes touched her body. I rewashed the clothes, and she recovered quickly. I never used Gain again, and she's been fine. It was odd, though - she's an identical twin, and her sister did not hav the same reaction. I suggest switching to a detergent that is not quite as "fragrant". Good luck!

Samething happened with my daughter. It could be a million things. Allergies, viruses, my daughter gets them from stress. You could take him to an allergist and find out, or wait and see if it happens again. It maybe his reaction to fighting a cold or something.
Good luck

Hi C., Sorry so late I have not been on my computer lately. NAET is the road we are going to pursue.

That sounds a little similar to a strange allergy that I've had since I was about 6 years old. I still have problems occasionally, but unfortunately we've never figured out what it is!!

I would wake up with spots/itching on, say, my writs/elbows. And it might get worse through the day. Then the next day I'd wake up and they might be all over my legs. It would last several days, and I'd have to take Benadryl. After a few days it would just go away. I think it would happen a few times a year, and I think it seemed to happen when the seasons changed. Just in the last few years I discovered that it seemed to help if I kept myself warm when the hives started. Maybe you could try that with your son.

I've been to an allergist to be tested and still don't know what it is. She did tell me though that it probably isn't a food allergy because a food allergy wouldn't cause hives for several days in a row like that & then just go away.

If you can, I would try taking your son to an allergist to see what they think, and possibly test him.

There are soooo many things we can be allergic to, from food to things in the air, to the cold!! (Yes, you can be allergic to cold temperatures, which I thought might have been my problem! It's called cold urticaria.)

as someone who has had allergic reactions like that I believe you are right in thinking it was the eggnog. An allergic reaction rash can last up to 3 weeks AFTER the event, because it can take that long for the stuff to leave your system. Have him drink LOTS of water to flush it out and eat yogurt (for the live active cultures his intestines need to fight this). I do not believe it to be from any thing he is touching, the rash doesn't sound like it.

My sister and I have both had rashes that lasted about 2 weeks (me to medicine, her to cold or foods) after the initial exposure) and my sister's looked like what you described.

Have you done anything new? My son got hives from a kids berry toothpaste!

My son has the same thing right now, same age, he has a low grade fever, too.

One day I thought he was bit by a spider several times, then I was wondering if it was the pecans or walnuts in cookies he ate, but it came on today as well. I just don't know the trigger. we saw the doctor, but it wasn't looking bad when we went, it's kinda off and on.

He is also 2 and 3/4. Wish I had more insight. I am guessing its viral and will pass.

our daughter all of a sudden was allergic to mandarine oranges. hives the size of dimes and she's not even 2! our son gets dangerous reaction from nuts and got hives on entire body.

new sheets?
new food?
also i was told it can take almost 48 hrs to get out of their system from the first break out.
i'd see an allergist to make sure.

we never guessed oranges, we thought it was soy.

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