Friday, May 16, 2008

Bee Stings

Bubblebees, Wasp Hornets and Yellow jackets are all different. They come from different families and all have different temperaments and venoms. All of them do have one thing in common, they all have stingers and can cause intense pain and swelling when they sting.

  • Get the stinger out: It will only take a second but make sure you get the stinger out. You can do this by using a scraping motion with your finger nail, the back of a knife or with a credit card. Make sure not to squeeze the venom sac attached to stinger because it will release more venom.
  • Ice the pain: Relieve the pain and swelling almost immediately by applying an ice compress. Use the ice once every 2 hours the first day. The ice will also prevent the spread of the venom.
  • Put your leg up: If you have been stung on the leg, you can elevate the leg for about 30 minutes after you have removed the stinger.
  • Apply heat: If you still have swelling after using the ice the first day a warm compress or heating pad can be applied to the sting. I would do this as often as possible for one day. Just remember anytime you use a heat compress you need to put a layer of cloth between your skin and the heat to avoid burning the skin.
  • Take an antihistamines: If you have itching near the sting site you can us an over the counter antihistamine like Benadryl or Chlor-Trimeton. Before taken any over the counter medicine always check with your healthcare provider.
  • Tenderize: Another method you can use to soothe itching is to rub a meat tenderizer on the area. Try to find one made with the enzyme papain.
  • Calamine to the rescue: Calamine will quickly help soothe the area and can be applied as often as needed.

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