Have you ever experienced itching or prickling in the skin and feeling of dryness getting more and more severe as the weather gets colder and colder in the winter?
When the winter comes, there are more and more people out there suffering from various skin diseases due to cold and dry weather. Today, we're going to take a look at cold urticaria.
Causes and Symptoms
Cold urticaria is a disorder where literally hives are caused by physical factors when your skin comes into contact with cold material or cold air. Cold urticaria may occur when coming into contact with cold air or material, but it can also appear during cold winters, for example, when the body temperature suddenly goes up as you come indoors after outdoor activities and as your body temperature starts to restore its normal status.
People often suspect that this is cholinergic urticaria, but cold urticarial and cholinergic urticaria can be distinguished by whether the hives occur when the body is heated or when it recovers to its normal temperature. The cause of cold urticaria has not been clearly discovered, but most experts say that sudden temperature changes in the body cause the body's immune system to display a defense reaction, causing allergens to be released, and leading to hives. Hives are normally in the shape of millet grains and in the form of small bumps that come together with prickling skin, sore feelings, and becoming red, as well as swelling when coming into contact with water.
Cold hives mainly appear on areas such as the hands, feet, and thighs, which are usually exposed to cold winds, but sometimes the symptoms appear on the whole body. In extreme cases, it can be accompanied by shortness of breath and low blood pressure headaches.
You can seek temporary reduction of cold urticaria symptoms through medication, but the chances of recurrence are high when it gets cold again. Because of this, you should focus more on prevention rather than treatment.
To prevent cold urticaria, it is important to avoid triggers, just as you manage general urticaria. You should avoid cold air, cold food, and cold material, and stay warm with accessories that help protect the body heat, such as scarfs, masks, gloves, socks, and more, which minimize exposure to the cold. When breaking out in hives, do not scratch.
Scratching just because it is itchy can instead lead to weak skin and wounds, and also, it is not good hygiene. It is recommended to drink sufficient amounts of water and regularly consume fruits and vegetables containing vitamins while keeping the environment at around 20 ℃ and at a minimum of 40% humidity.