What is Urticaria? (Definition & Causes)

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Urticaria means an allergic reaction that causes red raised skin rashes that are extremely itchy.

Urticaria also refers to Hives, weals, welts or nettle rash.

When body reacts to any allergens (substances that produce allergies), it releases histamine.  Histamine is a protein that triggers our capillaries to leak fluid. This fluid then accumulates under the skin and manifests itself as a red raised rash on the skin.  These raised weals are characteristic symptoms of Urticaria.

arm with hives rashes

Source

Urticaria (Hives) is a noncommunicable disease, so it doesn’t spread through contact.

What are the symptoms of Urticaria?

A characteristic symptom of Urticaria is the raised red rashes that vary in size and are usually itchy. The rashes may be small and isolated or may join together to cover larger areas of skin.  Then they are called plaques.  Urticaria rashes may appear on any part of your body such as arms, legs, back, face, lips, tongue, and throat. The rashes may fade away in a few hours or in a few days.

(Don’t confuse it with Angioedema. Angioedema is different from Urticaria in which the rash develops under the skin surface and lasts longer than Urticaria.  Treatment for both is; however, the same.)

Types of Urticaria and their causes

The basic cause of Urticaria is the release of histamine from the capillaries in the skin. These tiny blood vessels have specialized cells called mast cells that secrete histamine, a chemical that is a vital part of our local immune system.  It is secreted whenever our body encounters a foreign pathogen or any other allergy trigger.  Thus, having Urticaria means that your body’s immune system got triggered by an internal or external stimulus.

There are two main types of Urticaria depending upon the duration for which the symptoms last. Let’s look at some of the triggers that may cause Urticaria in some persons.

1. Acute Urticaria:

The symptoms last for several hours to several weeks. However, an episode of acute urticaria almost always resolves completely in less than six weeks. Some causes of acute urticaria are:

  • Edibles such as nuts, berries, milk, chocolate, eggs, fish, and
  • Some food additives and preservatives
  • Insect Bites
  • Sunlight exposure
  • Certain medications such as NSAIDs, ACE inhibitors, and painkillers.
  • Some internal disease

(Physical urticaria is a form of acute urticaria that occurs due to physical stimulation of skin such as through heat, cold, sweating, or exercise. Some people develop urticaria just by scratching the skin or due to firm articles of clothing. In such cases, it is called Dermatographism. Physical urticaria disappears in less than an hour.)

2. Chronic Urticaria:

The symptoms last for more than six weeks. It’s not known what causes chronic urticaria. Most of the times, the cause remains unknown; however, patients with hepatitis, thyroid disease or cancer may develop chronic urticaria.  Since it’s a long-term disease, it may affect the lungs, gastrointestinal tract or muscles of the affected person resulting in diarrhea, vomiting, soreness of muscles and shortness of breath.

Treatment of urticaria is symptomatic and mostly consists of antihistamines most of which are available over-the-counter.  Topical therapies are available but mostly ineffective. They are taken not to treat the condition but to reduce the itching and discomfort. This essentially means that for the most part, urticaria is a highly annoying temporary condition that goes away on its own and requires only symptom management.

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Alcuacin Village – Spain

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Bienvenido Bienvenido al pueblo de Alcaucin!

The village of Alcaucin is an awesome place to visit – my favorite time to visit? October.

Alcaucin Map

It’s a place filled with natural beauty and alluring landscapes. If you want to spend holidays free from the hustle and bustle, then the Alcaucin village in Spain should be your next vacation destination. It’s a well-maintained village with Spanish architecture and Spanish culture reflecting from every nook and corner.  You will enjoy your holidays in the fabulous environment of the village. The town is less crowded with the population of around 2500 people only.

Sightseeing

If you love hiking, this is the best place for you.  Don’t forget to bring your hiking kit because visiting the picturesque peaks of Alcaucin is like a dream come true. The main tourist points where you can amuse yourself and have fun are:

  • Sulfurous Springs of Las Majadas
  • Alcazar Nature Reserve
  • La Maroma – the summit of Maroma mountaisn
  • Castle of Zalia
  • Church of Nuestra Señora del Rosario

Fort

Chestnut Festivals

If you are fond of festivals (like me) then village festivals are absolutely not-to-be-missed. Plan ahead and visit the various festivals througout the year.

  • Spring (May) – the cultural week
  • Mid-May – San Isidro Pilgrimage in the Fortress
  • June – Virgin de la Inmaculada
  • Summer (August) – Flamenco Singing Festival
  • Autumn (October) – Chestnut Festival (My personal favorite)

chestnuts

When the world celebrates Halloween, the people of Alcaucin celebrate the chestnut festival. In this event, thousands of chestnuts are roasted or consumed in raw form with sweet potatoes. It is a unique event that Spanish people love to celebrate. You must attend the festival if you visit the Alcaucin village during October and November.

Resorts and Villas

Hotel

Spain is the hub of tourism and the village of Alcaucin is a favorite tourist destination bordering the clean shores of Granada.  The village has some of the best resorts and villas in the nearby towns.  VillaGrande is well known for its facilities and homely environment. It’s not crowded and you can also choose to cook your own meals and enjoy a quiet peaceful time with your friends and family.

Exclusively for the Foodies

Food

The village has some excellent restaurants, so there is no need to worry about the eatables.  You can get a variety of food; however, it’s a sin to miss tortillas de bacalao con miel (honey and cod omelettes), a specialty of the village.  Don’t forget to eat chorizo sausage and the tapa of Jamon. How about garlic porridge, and squash with sardines, olive oil biscuits and the Moscatel wine, a local sweet wine.

The summers are hot in the village while the weather is temperate during winters. Thus, you can will meet comfortable weather during winters or can choose to enjoy the warmth of summers here. If you are planning a vacation, then book a flight to Spain and make sure to visit Alcaucin village and the surrounding areas that are full of natural landscapes and relaxing environment.

 

Best Party Makeup Palettes

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Best Party Makeup Palettes 

Festivities and parties are an “anytime and anywhere” call throughout the year. On these instances, women need all-in-one-makeup palettes to add a quick splash of color to their persona. However, the biggest challenge is to figure out the “RIGHT” palettes for perfect lips, glowing cheeks, and dreamy eyes. In trying to do so, we cough up our (really really) hard-earned paychecks and still make unwise decisions.

Therefore, we have gathered some of the top-notch yet economical colored trays to solve our common beauty problem. So, scroll down to find the best party makeup palettes to fulfill all your makeup needs in a single “GO!”

HUDA Highlighter Palette

Highlighter Palette

This Dubai based beauty brand is a definite YES for its Highlighter Palette. It has a unique cream formula that takes beauty regimen to the next level.

Dior Couture Colour Wardrobe

Dior_s Couture Colour Wardrobe

Dior’s Couture Colour Wardrobe is the game-changing beauty hack.  Yes – this single palette has all three makeup essentials: shimmering nudes, smoky shades, and three lip tints to glamorize a perfect evening.

Chanel Palette Essentielle

Chanel_s Palette Essentielle

Chanel’s Palette Essentielle is the perfect option for those seeking “within-a-minute-touch-up” hack for everyday makeup. The palette packs a light yet buildable concealer, a fantastic highlighter and a creamy lip and cheek color for a glowing look.

Bobbi Brown ’s Caviar & Rubies Eye Shadow Palette

Bobbi Brown_s Caviar & Rubies Eye Shadow Palette

Bobbi Brown’s Caviar & Rubies Eye Shadow Palette is a nifty thing for beautiful smoky eyes and jewel-toned makeup.  Give in to the mesmerizing burgundies, opulent gold, bronzes or royal blue hues in this palette.

Maybelline Total Temptation Shadow and Highlight palette

Total Temptation Shadow and Highlight palette

Maybelline has two remarkable palettes to offer this season. Try out its 24K Nudes Palette for an incredible staying power. Otherwise, get your hands on Total Temptation Shadow and Highlight palette to sparkle bolder shades. It also has a black matte tone that you can use as a liner.

Sephora Pro Dimensional Highlighting Palette

Sephora_s Pro Dimensional Highlighting Palette

Sephora’s Pro Dimensional Highlighting Palette is celestial. You wouldn’t want to miss chromatic highlighters in three super cool tones paired up with two cheeky glosses.

YSL Beauty Dazzling Lights Edition Makeup Palette

YSL_s Dazzling Lights Edition Makeup Palette

YSL’s Dazzling Lights Edition Makeup Palette is quite a useful option for ladies who want everything in a single palette. With its four bright eyeshades, blush, a highlighter, and lipstick, it has three mini brushes as well so you may boot up for any occasion anytime anywhere you want.

L.F. Mad for Matte 2 Palette

E.L.F. Mad for Matte 2 Palette

E.L.F Mad for Matte 2 Palette is the best option for girls who love hitting matte into everything.

E.L.F Mad for Matte 2 Palette

Also for endless color options opt for its Studio Endless Eyes Pro Mini Eyeshadow Palette.

L’Oréal Infallible Paints Blush Palette

Infallible Paints Blush Palette

The Infallible Paints Blush Palette from L’Oréal is a BIG “YES.” Why? Because the flattering rosy, hot pink, and coral hues are never going to fade away from the beauty regimen ever.

Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Palette

Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Palette

The 18 creamy lip tints on the Lip Palette can be applied any way you want. You may go with a single shade or mix two or more for perfectly glossy lips.

Let me know which palette is your go-to solution for touch ups and makeup on-the-run.