The most important treatment is to stay warm. Some air conditioned rooms and pools may be too cold for the skin. Warming up immediately after exposure to cold temperatures usually helps control the hives before they get worse. Although the hives do not instantaneously disappear after warming the affected area(s), warming up afterwards reduces the time it takes for the hives to go away. Some patients report that spreading butter or vegetable shortening on their affected areas reduces the risk of future eruptions.
Allergy medications containing antihistamines such as Benadryl, Zyrtec, Claritin, Periactin and Allegra may be taken orally to prevent and relieve some of the hives (depending on the severity of the allergy). There are also topical antihistamine creams which are used to help relieve hives in other conditions, but there is not any documentation stating it will relieve hives induced by cold temperature. Please note, however, it is not often that antihistamines work for cases like Cold Urticaria.
There has also been evidence to show that Cold Urticaria has been linked to a gluten intolerance, and gluten free diets have helped some CU sufferers.
Cold hives can result in a potentially serious, or even fatal, systemic reaction (anaphylactic shock). People with cold hives may have to carry an injectable form of epinephrine (like Epi-pen or Twinject) for use in the event of a serious reaction.
Contrary to popular belief, immersing the affected area in hot water or a warmer environment does not improve conditions. Immersing the affected area in warm water or a warmer environment is a means which is used to help bring the allergic reaction under control so it does not become worse.
The best treatment for this allergy is avoiding exposure to cold temperature.
Ebastine has been proposed as an approach to prevent acquired cold urticaria.
Read more about this topic: Cold Urticaria
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