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Treating Bee Stings

By Edited Jul 10, 2015 0 0

Getting stung by a bee is a painful experience for most people, and can be deadly to those victims who have severe reactions to getting stung. For most individuals though, a bee sting is somewhere between an annoyance and a serious pain. The first thing to do when you are stung is to move away from the area where you were stung as bees release a chemical scent when something dangerous is occuring, and thereby attracting even more bees to you.

Next, you should attempt to remove the stinger as soon as possible. By quickly removing the stinger you will limit the amount of venom that is released. Pulling or scraping the stinger out with your fingernail is usually your first option and works most of the time. If unsuccessful you can try using a key, or stiff piece of plastic such as a credit card. Start at the base of the stinger, pushing it out towards the spot where it first entered the skin, just as if you were removing a small splinter. Try to avoid using tweezers as squeezing the stinger will cause more venom to be released into your bloodstream.

After the stinger is removed, thoroughly wash the area with soap and warm water and then wipe down the area with a cotton ball that has been soaked in rubbing alcohol. Next, apply ice or a cold compress to the affected area to numb the pain and reduce swelling. An application of calamine lotion can also help to reduce the pain and itching. Some other methods used to provide pain relief include dabbing the area that was stung with white vineger or applying a paste made from a mixture of baking soda and water. Another popular treatment used is combining a few drops of water and a pinch of meat tenderizer, to create a paste that can easily be massaged into the skin.

Keep a watchful eye out for any symptoms of anaphylactic shock, which is a severe allergic reaction to being stung. Symptoms may include difficulty breathing, excessive swelling, vomiting or seizures. These symtoms may even be experienced by individuals who have not previously had such severe reactions to previous bee stings. If any of the above symptoms present themselves it is most important to seek professional medical assistance immediately.

Finally, individuals who are known to be allergic to bees, often will carry an epinephrine auto-injector, also known as an EpiPen. If the victim has been prescibed to carry an EpiPen for these circumstances but does not have it with them it is important to call for medical help immediately.

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