When to see your doctor about hives
While hives can be uncomfortable, they’re usually harmless and disappear within minutes or hours. Sometimes they hang around for a few days. Seek emergency medical treatment if you develop hives around your eyes or in your mouth or experience difficulty breathing, wheezing, light-headedness, or dizziness.
You may have a life-threatening condition called anaphylaxis, and the internal tissue swelling can block breathing passages. If you’re prone to hives, ask your doctor if you should carry a rapid-injection form of epinephrine in case you develop anaphylaxis. And if you have chronic hives that just don’t respond to milder treatments, your doctor may prescribe oral steroids.