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Dermatographic urticaria means writing on the skin and is a condition that might look frightening for those who are not familiar with how it manifests itself.
When a person has dermatographic urticarial, a simple light scratch or stroke of the skin leads to the development of a raised red mark. Essentially, any contact with your skin results in welts. While it does not cause pain, it is visually disturbing to those who do not understand the condition.
In fact, the condition is not very serious. The marks typically go away within a half an hour. They do not cause scarring or anything lasting issue.
Furthermore, experts say it only occurs in a very small percentage of the population, not more than five percent. Most people who have it do not even seek treatment since it is not that intrusive.
However, it can make you feel self-conscious because other people are quick to point out marks on the skin or to make a big deal out of them. This may cause embarrassment and make you want to find a way to keep your dermatographic urticarial under control.
Fortunately, there are some home remedies that will help alleviate the symptoms and make the discomfort easier to bear.
Causes of Dermatographic Urticarial
The underlyling cause of this condition is not really known. There are certain things that might enhance the conditon or trigger you to see it occur on your body. These include:
Dubbed skin writing, dermatographic urticaria appears after the skin is scratched and doesn’t require treatment. It is typical not to see a doctor about the condition.
However, as mentioned, it can be unpleasant and can lead to social isolation or anxiety. Only making things worse is that it most often occurs in teenagers who are already uneasy with their appearances and social standing.
So, to help ease your suffering if you have the condition and want to stop it from happening, we came up with this list of home remedies you can try.
This type of alternative medicine is used to relief a wide range of conditions and to soothe pain. Although study research is inconsistent, it is believed that acupuncture can help relieve dermatographic urticaria.
The common acupuncture points could be spleen 10 and large intestine 11. There are various types of acupuncture available, including sham procedures that rely on the placebo effect to cure dermatographic urticaria.
A study involving patients suffering from chronic urticaria chose forty patients that were divided into two groups. One of the groups received the real acupuncture treatment, while the other one received the sham procedure for three weeks.
The results pointed out that the majority of the patients who benefited from the real treatment were met with a remission of their symptoms. The study discovered that the best results were noticed in the third week following the treatment. Researchers also noted that the beneficial effects of acupuncture increase with each session.
2. Lukewarm showers
In order to protect your body from extreme temperatures, avoid taking baths or showers that are too hot or too cold. Dermatographic urticaria reacts to firm stroking, but could also be facilitated by sudden changes in temperatures. In the same vein, you should avoid saunas, jacuzzis and going out in freezing temperatures, when possible.
3. Hypo-allergenic products
Dermatographic urticaria is connected to sensitive skin that needs special care. Try to choose hypo-allergenic products that don’t contain harsh soaps or harmful chemicals. Avoid scrubbing the skin and use a patting motion for moisturizing.
It hasn’t been proven that patients that suffer from dermatographic urticaria should only use hypo-allergenic products, however, since the causes of the condition are still being studied, it’s best not to take any chances with harsh chemicals.
4. Apple cider vinegar
For a topical use, apple cider vinegar is the ideal candidate for soothing dermatographic urticaria. It has a cooling, soothing effect and it has unique antihistamine properties that relieve inflammation on the spot. Additionally, apple cider vinegar has the ability to regulate the immune system’s response.
There are two ways you can use apple cider vinegar. You can add two cups of vinegar to a tub filled with warm water. Use this technique and soak in the water and apple cider vinegar bath on a daily basis for fifteen to twenty minutes. The second method involves diluting one part apple cider vinegar in one part water and washing down the problem areas a couple of times per day.
Oats don’t only make for a nutritious breakfast, they are also great for topical use. Oatmeal has soothing, anti-irritating abilities that make it a great home remedy for dermatographic urticaria. Topical application instantly relieves itching and wheals.
To use this remedy, mix two cups ground oatmeal with one cup baking soda. Sprinkle the mixture in a tub filled with warm water. Be sure to give it a stir before you soak in the water. You can repeat the process on a daily basis and soak for fifteen minutes.
6. Aloe vera
There is barely anything more soothing and calming than aloe vera. This universal natural remedy boasts antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory properties that help relief redness and calm down irritation. Great for topical use, aloe vera can also be taken internally. This stimulates immunity and eliminates inflammatory toxins.
Using aloe vera for topical applications is simple. Fresh aloe vera works best, so if you have your own plant, choose a plump leaf and break it in two. Use the gel for immediate application on the irritated skin. You can leave the treatment on for up to fifteen minutes and then follow up with a gentle rinse.
For internal use, aloe vera juice can be consumed on a daily basis. The nutrients it contains help boost the immune system. However, pregnant or breastfeeding women should avoid this treatment.
Although this might seem counterintuitive, nettles are a highly recommended alternative treatment for dermatographic urticaria. The unique properties that qualify it as a great remedy are the anti-inflammatory and antihistamine abilities. Nettles have the power to relieve itching and swelling.
Nettle tea can be made by using a tablespoon of dry nettles leaves to one cup of water. Steep the herbs up to fifteen minutes and sweeten the tea with a teaspoon of honey. You can also take nettle supplements, but you should consult a doctor beforehand.
The cooling effect of mint makes it a popular remedy for dermatographic urticaria. In addition to this, it has strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory abilities that put a stop to burning or itching sensations.
You can use mint to make a liquid for washing the irritated skin. You can use two teaspoons of fresh leaves to boil in a cup of water for five minutes. Allow the liquid to cool down and cool it in the refrigerator prior to use. You can also prepare mint tea by boiling one teaspoon of crushed leaves in a cup of water for five minutes and sweetening it with a teaspoon of honey.
Another universal remedy, ginger works wonder internally and externally. You can drink ginger teas throughout the day to reap the anti-inflammatory benefits or apply ginger concoctions locally to soothe skin.
Types of Urticaria
There are other types of skin conditions that are related to dermatographic urticaria, but that are not the same. To help you distinguish the different types of urticaria, here is some details about each of them:
- Acute urticaria. Also known as hives, this is a vascular reaction at the skin’s level. It is manifested through smooth, elevated papules (or wheals). It is not uncommon for these erythematous to be accompanied by severe pruritus. The lesions usually go away by themselves in a few hours without leaving any scarring. Urticaria episodes are generally of short duration and self-limited. Chronic urticaria is characterized by frequent eruptions that spread over a period of time of more than six weeks.
- Cholinergic urticaria. Caused by a physical stimulus, cholinergic urticaria appears because of sweat. This condition breaks down into four categories: poral occlusion, generalized hypohidrosis, sweat allergy and idiopathic (unknown) cholinergic urticaria. Generally, patients struggling with the latter form are dealing with an autoimmune reaction
- Chronic urticaria. Not a disease in itself, urticaria is rather a reaction representing degranulation of cutaneous mast cells. Urticaria that persists for more than six weeks can be categorized as chronic urticaria, which presents wheals or hives.
- Contact syndrome urticaria. With a self-explanatory name, this type of urticaria can be caused by anything from fragrances and animal products to metals, foods or preservatives. Exposure to these kind of agents resembles exposure to irritants, which is why the patients should be extremely cautious and seek a prompt diagnosis. The condition can be classified in immunologic and nonimmunologic contact urticaria.
- Pressure urticaria. A less frequent type of physical urticaria, pressure urticaria is characterized by erythematous swelling in the points of pressure. This condition can appear on the spot, within a few minutes after a pressure stimulus.
- Solar urticaria. Brief exposure to sunlight will cause stinging, wheals and pruritus in patients suffering from solar urticaria. The signs of this condition will go away in a few minutes or a couple of hours and won’t cause any pigmentary changes.
The Final Word
Dermatographic urticarial is not a serious medical condition. In fact, it is a minor inconvenience at worst. However, people who have the condition might feel awkward about it as it is something others may point out.
This is why we created this list of remedies that you can try to see what works best for stopping your symptoms. You can finally get relief and avoid the embarrassing symptoms from happening.