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Hives vs. Rash – Identify Your Condition

Getting a rash usually is not a matter of concern, but when it lasts for days or months, it surely becomes worrisome, and needless to say, uncomfortable. Waking up with red itchy bumps on your skin will make you want to find out what caused it and how to get rid of it.

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Unfortunately, almost all rash-type skin conditions look alike, which causes difficulties, even for a doctor, to understand actually what it is.

Acne or chronic hives, cystic eruptions or pimples, rashes or eczema all offer similar kinds of symptoms and appearances, making it difficult to distinguish between them. They all can cause redness of the skin, itching, sometimes pain and swelling as well. But, by reading the following information, you will be able to tell the difference between a rash and hives.

Trying to distinguish between a rash and hives can be difficult, so first it is important for you understand the difference between hives and a rash.

What are hives?

The first concerns what hives actually are. These is a common skin condition that can be triggered by the number of causes. They are the commonly seen as red, itchy, slightly elevated bumps on your skin, that might or might not be found on more than one area of the body.  Hives are accompanied by the pain and swelling, along with irritation and inflammation.

It is often said that the hives are commonly caused as a result of an allergic response, but still, there are other reasons of it including:

  • Excess sun exposure
  • Too much cold
  • Stress
  • Intolerance to specific food items
  • Immune response
  • Bacterial infection
  • Viral infections

All these causes trigger an imbalance in histamine, the chemical that is produced in the body to perform specific functions including aiding in immunity, acting as neurotransmitter in the brain and as an antagonist to adrenaline in stress conditions. The imbalance of histamine levels in the body causes the blood vessels to expand.

Histamine is released from cells lining the skin’s blood vessels; blood plasma leaks out of small vessels in the skin and accumulates, causing the itching and discomfort known as hives.

Hives may disappear within a few hours in some persons or within some days in others, and they can last as long 6 months as well. Due to the discomfort and unsightliness, you will certainly want to get them treated either using natural remedies or medication.

You can also get the Natural Hives & Angioedema Treatment System that can equip you with all you need to get rid of hives. Moreover, it is important to get rid of the underlying cause that is aggravating the situation.

What is a rash?

After understanding hives, the next important thing for you to understand is what a rash is. Rashes are a skin condition that can cause damage to skin. Most of the time, either the rash is inherent to conditions like eczema, but sometimes, it can be associated with autoimmune diseases and infections as well.

Rashes are always spread over the skin but they do not causes raised eruptions, like that of hives. They can be treated effectively using different kinds of treatments.

Hives vs rash – the key difference

The key difference between these two skin conditions is that rash is a general term, that is generally used to describe a skin condition associated with different appearances and symptoms that are caused by the number of conditions including infections, immune responses, or diseases etc., while hives are the specific skin manifestations with a characteristic appearance caused by either allergy, infection or stress.

Moreover, we can compare these two conditions as following:


  • Hives—mostly caused by an infection, intolerance to any food commodity or topical agent, exposure to sun or changes in pressure.
  • Rash—associated with causes including infections, auto-immune diseases etc.


  • Hives—red itchy raised bumps over the skin that might be overlapping each other on various areas of the body.
  • Rash—might take the appearance of red flat surface that is itchy, but not swelled.


  • Hives—associated with number of manifestations including allergic responses, wheezing, etc.
  • Rash—usually an indicator of an auto-immune response or infection at the same time

I hope considering all these facts, you are now able to tell whether you have a rash or hives!

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