Angioedema is a swelling similar to hives which can often be mistaken for hives as the primary symptom is swelling and redness. It is caused typically by a release of histamines which results from an allergic reaction. The main difference is that angioedema occurs beneath the upper layer of skin tissues. Hives are often called welts. They are a surface swelling. It is possible to have angioedema without hives. It can be quite dangerous in some cases, particularly when swelling progresses rapidly. This is because it can affect the mouth, tongue, and throat constricting airways and causing suffocation. In cases where swelling progresses rapidly, it is absolutely necessary to seek professional medical help.
However, in more mild cases when the angioedema is not progressing rapidly or in an area which can be dangerous, home remedies can be considered. Often, angioedema can be a chronic, recurring condition which afflicts patients typically once per month. Typically this is the result of some sort of allergen triggering the body’s response. The most common and effective home remedy of course comes in the form of avoiding any triggers altogether. Food, pet dander, and other allergens are common causes of angioedema. Logically, the best strategy is to eliminate whatever this allergen is from day to day life. Often this can require a major lifestyle change such as dietary limitations or inability to own a certain point, but the benefits must be weighed. Even so, often these are difficult to pinpoint as a culprit however.
Other home remedies involve treating the symptoms when they do occur. Once angioedema has begun to occur, an effective option is a cold compress. Ice or an ice pack (be sure to separate the ice from direct contact with the skin via a cloth or other material) causes blood vessels to constrict which reduces swelling. To take this further, one may try submerging their body in a cool bath to soothe the symptoms. Cool temperatures tend to soothe the redness and itching that comes from the inflammation. If this is not an option, it is definitely advisable to avoid any sort of tight or restrictive clothing which can aggravate symptoms. Light, loose-fitting clothing is definitely necessary. Other things to avoid include hot baths and showers, direct sunlight, heat, and stress.
Another home remedy that some find effective is apis mellifica, a substance derived from honeybees and often recommended in homeopathic medicine as a solution for various types of swelling, including bee stings, rashes, and other allergic reactions. Those who practice this type of medicine see a connection between the bee’s venom, which causes these sorts of pain and swelling, with also possessing the ability to cure these symptoms. Even with a home remedy such as this, care should be taken to consult an expert concerning appropriate dosage.
In some rare cases angioedema can be hereditary or even, in which case more long-term solutions may be necessary, and it is advisable to seek a medical professional who can better diagnose the trigger for the angioedema.