Bee stings seriously hurt. You may experience swelling and feel a sharp pain in the area where you got stung. It may also turn reddish and feel itchy. Not only will a bee sting affect you physically, but it may put you in a bad mood. And why not? It can get very uncomfortable after all. But a bee sting can be more worrisome than you imagine.
There are instances when the bee sting is life-threatening, especially when you are allergic to bees. Once the bee stings you, a toxin is passed into your skin. This is actually the cause of the pain you may feel, including other common symptoms like swelling. When you’re allergic, the effect is much worse.
If it was a honeybee that stung you, the bee dies after releasing the toxin. But if it was a wasp or other species, expect that you have more than one sting. What can you do when this happens? Find out here.
Symptoms of a Bee Sting
Other than the redness of the bee sting, you may also experience the following symptoms:
- Loss of consciousness
- Pale skin
- Severe itching
- Swelling of the throat and tongue
- Vomiting and nausea
- Rapid pulse
Once these signs become severe, immediately go to your doctor. Do not wait until you have an allergic reaction or anaphylactic shock.
How to Treat Bee Stings
Lucky for you, there are home remedies that you can do to treat bee stings. Before anything else, the first thing that you should do is remove the stinger. You can do this by using the edge of your credit card or your fingernail. By doing this, you are stopping the spread of the toxins in your body. Afterward, you need to wash the bite with soap and water.
To reduce the pain and itchiness of the sting, you can add alternatives to the infected area, including the following:
So far, the most effective way that you can do is by applying ice. This is used to reduce venom absorption. In addition, ice can reduce the swelling of the infected area.
Apple cider vinegar
Just like ice, vinegar can reduce the venom. Apply an apple cider vinegar in the sting site for 15 minutes. You can use a cloth or bandage in this treatment.
If you want to reduce the itching and pain of the infected area, you can use honey. All you need to do is apply a little bit of honey in the bee sting site and cover it with cloth or bandage. Leave it like that for up to an hour.
Meat tenderizer has an enzyme called papain that is best used to relive pain and itching. This is why it can be a good way to treat bee stings. Simply make a solution of meat tenderizer and water. Slowly apply the solution in the infected area and wait up to 30 minutes.
Another way to eliminate itchiness and pain is through baking soda. Create a paste of baking soda and water. Place a thick paste on the sting site. Then, cover the area with a bandage and leave it for 15 minutes. You can re-apply the paste if it is needed.
You can apply a small amount of toothpaste in the infected area. Some claim that it can neutralize the venom. Although there is no actual proof that toothpaste can cure bee stings, it is inexpensive and convenient.
Wet aspirin tablet
One of the most popular ways to cure bee stings is through a wet aspirin tablet. It is used to reduce the swelling and pain of the bee sting. You just need to apply the aspirin in the infected area.
Oils and herbs
You can also use different herbs and oils to cure a bee sting. Some of the herbs you can apply to the sting are the following:
- Witch hazel: This is used for bee stings and insect bites. You can apply witch hazel to the infected area to reduce itching, pain, and inflammation.
- Aloe vera: This is used to relieve pain and to soothe your skin. You can break off a part of the aloe vera and use its gel in the infected area.
- Tea tree oil: This is used to ease bee sting pain and is a natural antiseptic. To use this oil, mix it with a carrier oil and apply a small amount in the sting site.
Other herbs and oils that you can use are calendula cream and lavender essential oil. There are also traditional treatments that you can use to cure bee stings. Some of these are the following:
One way you can do is by taking anti-inflammatories like Advil or Motrin. You can also use calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream to remove the redness and itchiness brought about the bee sting. In worse cases, you can take an oral antihistamine to reduce swelling.
It is important to note that you should not scratch the infected site. This will further spread the infection in your body. It can even intensify the redness and itchiness of the infected area. If you have a record of anaphylactic shock, especially after a bee sting, be sure that you have an EpiPen with you at all times.
Bee Sting Prevention
Do not worry, though, there are a lot of ways you can do to prevent a bee sting. You can do these for example:
- Cover your food when you are eating outside
- Do not walk around barefoot
- Stop yourself from drinking in open cans
- Do not wear clothes that have flowery prints
- Use perfume or hair products with a mild scent to avoid attracting bees
- Do not play with beehives
Bee stings surely sting to the point that you will be irritated and annoyed with it. The redness, itchiness, and pain are difficult to bear which is why it is best that you get treated immediately. Fortunately, there are a lot of ways you can treat it. There are home remedies and there are traditional treatments that the doctor can recommend you.