Summer, spring and sometimes fall bring a wide variety of insects to your property. Depending on where you live, bugs can be a year round problem. Stings by Wasps, Yellow Jackets, Hornets and Bees are very painful. The venom they inject causes welts, itching, swelling and tenderness or outright pain. These flying, stinging menaces can sting you once or multiple times. Only the Honey Bee can sting once, all others will sting as many times as they can. Yellow jackets are especially dangerous because when they sting their venom emits a scent which other Yellow Jackets follow so they sting you too. Being a target for stinging insects is never fun.
When the weather permits, many families, children and active people enjoy the outdoors where the wasps, hornets, bees and yellow jackets are most likely to be buzzing around. Prepare yourself along with your family and friends in case of a sting or several stings. For those that are allergic to the stings, see your doctor or healthcare professional and make an emergency plan in the event of a stinging. Many doctors will write a prescription for an injectable medication in a “pen” form for you to keep on hand. If you already have the pen, give yourself or your child a dose and then always seek emergency medical help and don’t attempt to treat the sting on your own. If you don’t think you or a loved one is allergic and have been stung multiple times – seek emergency medical treatment anyway. If you are not allergic to the insect sting and have only been stung a few times, try to alleviate the pain yourself.
Scrape the stinger out. Do not try to squeeze the stinger to make it come out. By squeezing you can break the tiny sac on the stinger and it will release more venom which increases the symptoms.
Wet the sting with cool water and rub a plain aspirin over it . Aspirin will help to reduce the pain and swelling. Do not use aspirin if you are allergic to it. You can also crush the aspirin, mix it with water to create a thin paste and spread it over the bite.
Place a thin cloth or towel over the area and apply an ice pack. Do not apply ice directly to your skin, as you can damage your skin.
Apply meat tenderizer to your insect sting. Meat tenderizer will work to reduce pain, swelling and the itch of a sting. Meat tenderizer neutralizes the venom.
Dab a little ammonia on the sting. Use a cotton ball to gently dab the area. Ammonia will reduce the pain swelling and itch.