20 answers

Hives!!!! - Hayden,ID

Hi ladies,

For the last 2 weeks I have been breaking out in HUGE hives all over the back of my legs, and on my butt. It is driving me crazy! I started taking Benadryl, and I was having to take it more than it was recommended, because it was not relieving the itching. Finally i broke down and went to the doctor. He prescribed Atarax, or Hydroxyzine. It has been awesome at taking away the itch, but it makes me so tired. Also, I try not to take too much of it because it is in the C category for pregnancy, (I am 33 weeks) and shows toxicity in the baby when taken in high doses. Is there anyone else who has had this problem, and how did you deal with it? Also I am wondering how long these hives will continue to break out. It's been 2 weeks already. Thanks!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Try Sarna lotion. It is a camphor/menthol lotion and works well for uncontrolled itching. You can still take the atarax if needed. You should be able to find it OTC at a drugstore.

DESITIN! It's magic -- use the real name-brand item. Works for any break-outs any of us have had at any age. I recommend to my friends for their kids (including a 7-year-old), and she was amazed. Just try it for 3 days.

More Answers

I have responded to allergies with hives. One time my back broke out in hives and was very itchy while I was in a movie theatre. I slathered cortisone cream on them when I got home and they went away almost immediately. I've never had hives that lasted for more than a few hours. I get hives when I eat food to which I'm allergic. Usually internally. I know because my ears and throat itch. One dose of an antihistamine and they're gone in 15-30 minutes or so. Without an antihistamine they might last an hour. Once the allergen is gone the hives go away.

Hives do appear on the skin when something is taken internally. I've had hives from medication. The hives went away when I took Benedryl or within an hour. I've had hives from bee stings.

Did the doctor discuss with you what is possibly causing the hives? I would try eliminating anything to which you might be allergic. Since the hives are just on your legs I'm guessing the cause is external but it might not be.

Do you wear panty hose? It may be the detergent in which you wash them or even the panty hose it's self. You could be allergic to your panties or the detergent. They touch your legs as you pull them up. So do your pants or a skirt. Try using a hypoallergenic detergent for all of your clothes, sheets, towels. Don't use a fabric softener or any other additives.

You could try covering the upholstered furniture on which you sit. You may have developed an allergy to the upholstery, something that it's been treated with, or something that's brushed against it.

Use a different mild soap for bathing. Stop using all lotions.

Think about everything to which your legs and bottom come into contact and either completely eliminate it or change it.

You didn't mention applying cortisone cream. That should help if they are hives. Did the doctor confirm that they are hives? Could they be a rash or form of dermatitis?

1 mom found this helpful

Keep in mind when you're pregnant you can develop allergies you don't usually have. So something you've "always" done/used can cause a reaction. This is very normal - your hormones are out of balance, your body is going through rapid change.

Try to think of things that only your butt/legs are touching -- like other Moms suggested -- panty hose, your laundry detergent, fabric softener, body wash, shaving cream, it could even be your shampoo/conditioner running down your backside when you rinse....

Since you're seeing none anywhere else I would first explore things that actually touch the areas that are breaking out. Trying switching to Dreft or some other very gentle detergent. Stop using fabric softener (if you do)... Pick what you think is the most obvious culprit and try eliminating it.

Good luck, sorry you're so uncomfortable. Hopefully it in a few short weeks it will be a distant memory.

1 mom found this helpful

I am so sorry you are dealing with this!! Have you examined your diet? Could it be something that you are eating thats causing this? There are lots of things that it COULD be, but some examples of common foods people are allergic to are nuts, eggs, berries, mushrooms, corn, sometimes dairy. The corn, nuts and berries are famous for making allergies go wild. See if any of those could be your problem.

Also, I would bathe only with soaps for sensitive skin, use non-scented lotions, no dryer sheets, no fabric softener, and only dye free/fragrance free laundry detergent. These should all help you. Good luck and hope you get better!!!

1 mom found this helpful

With my first so I got PUPPP's which is a pregnancy rash it started on my belly and moved to the rest of my body. It started when I was 38 weeks pregnant but can come earlier and it didn't go away until after I gave birth. Even then I was still itching all over for about two months after. Only cold showers helped releive the itching. I would take 3-4 showers a night (I would get up in the middle of the night because it itched so bad).
Not sure if what you have is the samething I would research it and ask you doctor.

1 mom found this helpful

I am sooo surprised only one person mentioned PUPPS.

PLEASE go see your OB; they know all about this condition. Please don't take meds not prescribed by your OB; he/she really is the best source for anything during your pregnancy.

I'd start by changing to a "Free & Clear" laundry detergent if you haven't already. My son had problems and that was the first thing I changed. We also only use "Free" dryer sheets, no softener. The last thing we ended up changing was the TP. He was allergic to our TP.

Good luck!

I had a problem for a while where I would break out in hives if I got too hot. soaking in a lukewarm oatmeal bath would help. Also, aveeno makes an anti-itch cream that helped with the itching. I also took claritin, which is probably not recommended during pregnancy.

DESITIN! It's magic -- use the real name-brand item. Works for any break-outs any of us have had at any age. I recommend to my friends for their kids (including a 7-year-old), and she was amazed. Just try it for 3 days.

Briefly--How about finding out what makes you break out in hives. Start with your laundry detergent--first change it to a non fragrant type. Then adjust your diet if the change in diet doesn't work. Take one thing out at a time and leave it out for two weeks. If the hives go away that is what is causing your hives.

I'm sorry you are so itchy, that must really suck when you're pregnant! But i have to say that am really concerned about your doctor giving you this medication to stop itch while you are pregnant. There is no way you should be taking this now. I would go see another doctor, a natural one, try mine, she's at ###-###-#### & will probably be able to help you without giving you something that is potentially harmful to your baby. Good luck with everything!

Yes, go to your OBGYN, I have a strong feeling this is pregnancy induced and the only relief is going to be delivery. Since you're only 33 weeks, your doc will at least be able to give you some suggestions on easing the itch. Take oatmeal baths. I took atarax while preggers for anxiety, it's more important to not take it right before delivery, as it will make baby sleepy (kind of like the way you feel yourself). Feel better!

Try Sarna lotion. It is a camphor/menthol lotion and works well for uncontrolled itching. You can still take the atarax if needed. You should be able to find it OTC at a drugstore.

It doesn't sound like hives, it sounds like shingles, a totally different thing. When you went to the doctor did they discuss that possibility? Hives are usually an allergic reaction. So if you're still breaking out, you're still exposing yourself to the allergen. Have you changed laundry detergents? Soap in the bath? Wearing a new moisturizer or perfume? How about your diet, anything new you're eating, could even be the same food but a different brand/mfg.?

To help with the itch, try taking Aveeno oatmeal baths. Use hydrocortisone creams or spray on the area. Calamine lotion also works well.

If it's shingles, they will last for a few weaks and there is pain associated with them, as it's a virus, very similar to chicken pox and herpes simplex, like cold sores. It will take time. Again, talk with your doctor. If he prescribed the medication, he/she should be aware of the possible side-effects to your unborn baby, but remind him/her. Talk with your pharmacist as well.

I wish you a speedy recovery!! and a very happy, healthy baby!!

I had a thought...since it is on your legs and backside, if its something you are sitting on. Are you using anything to clean the toilet seat? Those disinfectant wipes could be a culprit. I know that I am really allergic to certain cleaners and even the smell can make me break out. Do you have a cat? If so, probably have someone else change the litterbox..it might be an ammonia sensitivity. I have both sinus and skin problems from it but some people have just skin reactions. Coconut oil sends my throat closed and my eyes shut without an antihistamine. I have to be careful about all palm oils as a result. Citric acid in cleaners can make me break out..lots of "orange or citrus" scented stuff out there right now that contain it. Toilet paper, laundry soap are all possibilities. We use the Arm and Hammer Free stuff. Only one we can use. The only hand and body soap I can use is Dove. (And only the regular kind). If the hives are lasting then the allergen is regularly contacted is my guess. So, look around the house and notice anything you might have changed recently. Hives can also be stress related. So, if there's extra stress (and you are pregnant ) You might just need to relax :)

After my first baby was born, I started getting hives for the first time in my life. I had them off and on for over two years before I finally went to an allergist. First, she had me start taking Zyrtec and Cimetidine daily--that immediately eliminated the symptoms. Then I got pregnant, so she had me go to Zyrtec only (since it's safe to use during pregnancy--class B). I didn't have any side effects with it, so you might want to give it a try. Next, she thought that my hives were probably a dust mite allergy that had never manifested in that way until my body changed after pregnancy, so she had me get dust mite covers for my mattress and pillows and told me to start washing all of my bedding in hot water at least every two weeks. Now I have stopped taking the Zyrtec and the hives have not returned. (It has been about three months since I stopped taking it and one month since my baby was born.) I hope this might be helpful. I know how miserable the hives can be!!!

I had this happen a few years ago while visiting Boise in the spring time, late April/ early May. My allergist (I have many pollen allergies, and some food) said it was related to my tree pollen, and my body just couldn't deal anymore, so one more symptom developed. Zyrtec is great with skin issues, if you can tolerate it (I get very sleepy within minutes of taking it). Keep up on the meds for a bit (after talking to OB, of course), and then when the trees are done pollenating, you should be ok.

Cold baths and Renew Bath oil!

Love it! Good luck!



Chronic hives are no fun...especially when you are pregnant and need to be careful about which medicines you take. I've had chronic hives a few times in my life (lasting as short as a few weeks, up to a year). I also primarily got them on my legs and behind (and hands, and sometimes even lip swelling). Most recently, I found Claritin worked for me. In the past, I took Zyrtec, but I did find that made me a bit sleepy. I'm not sure if you can take those, but they did the trick for me. I still had outbreaks now and then, but it controlled them for the most part. I never did figure out what caused them, but to this day I suspect Advil may have triggered it.

I found this article helpful and interesting: http://www.hives-treatment.com/hives-during-pregnancy.html

But I would talk to your ob/gyn about it as soon as you can.

You should check to see if you are eating anything that can be giving you hives. Also, did you change your laundry soap or bath soap, etc that touches your body.

Health and Wellness Coach

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.