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Wasp And Bee Sting Tips

July 14, 2014

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up close images of a wasp on fruit

Summer brings about lots of outdoor activity for everyone, including most insects. So as you are out and about enjoying a hike or picnic, stinging insects can become a problem. Here are some tips on avoiding getting stung and what to do if you are stung.

Tips to avoid getting stung:

  1. Don’t wear perfumes or strong scents. Bees are attracted to flowers for their sweet smell so don’t be mistaken for a sweet smelling flower!

  2. Keep your food covered as best you can if you are eating outside. The same smell that makes your mouth water attracts a variety of insects including bees, yellow jackets and wasps.

  3. Don’t wear floral prints or really bright colors. This is the same principle of don’t smell like a flower – don’t look like one either.

  4. Don’t walk barefoot. It is easy to step on a bee, or worse an entire ground nest of yellow jackets when barefoot.

  5. Avoid spending time in the garden around the flowers, especially if you’re known to have an allergy to stings.

  6. Leave vehicle windows up. You don’t want to be faced with a bee or wasp while trying to drive.

  7. Stay still around bees and wasps. Remember your mom always said, “If you don’t bother it, it won’t bother you!”. Many times stinging insects will fly away but the potential for a sting greatly increases if you begin to swat your arms and move around.

No one wants to get stung but it happens. For some people, it can be life threatening. A severe allergic reaction occurs in only about 3% of the population. You may not know if you are part of the 3%. So just watch the reaction and go from there. What are the normal sting reactions and what to do?

  1. Localized pain, redness and swelling are the most common symptoms.

  2. If there is still a stinger, try to remove with tweezers.

  3. You should clean the area and use ice packs for relief.

  4. Try a pain reliever such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen for any pain.

  5. You may want to use a topical cream for a local reaction. You can also take an antihistamine even if it just a local reaction.

If you experience problems breathing, nausea, facial swelling, abdominal pain or shock symptoms, you may be having a severe allergic reaction. You need to seek medical attention immediately if this is the case.

The key to treating an insect sting is to avoid getting one. So follow the tips and enjoy your time in the sun and with family and friends. If you do see any stinging insect nests on your property either in the trees, shrubs, in the ground or hanging from the side of the home, contact your local pest control pros. Stinging insect control is not something that should be done on your own. Often times DIY wasp killing sprays can make the nest aggravated rather than killing them all.

 



Tags: stinging insects in pa  |  how to treat a sting