For some, a bee sting can be a minor and minimally painful nuisance. For others, it is a life threatening issue that needs to be addressed immediately. Since you never really know if someone is going to be at your house and have an allergy to bee stings, it’s important to have knowledge about the nearest urgent care. Orange County happens to have quite a few of them, so make sure you know how to get to the one closest to you. Otherwise, use the methods below to treat a bee sting and reduce the impact it has on the victim’s body.
Get Away from the Bees
This might seem like an obvious point, but some believe that the danger has passed once someone is stung. The truth is that bees will alert other bees that there is danger in the vicinity. They do this with a special scent they release. The result is an immediate attack by the hive—something you want to avoid at all costs. It is important to immediately remove yourself and the victim from the area. If the hive follows, seek refuge in the nearest body of water, since bees will not follow you under water.
Remove the Stinger
The issue with bee stings is not the stinger itself. It’s the venom that the stinger secretes. This is what causes the swelling and what people with bee sting allergies respond to. Therefore, it’s important not to release more venom into the affected area when you remove the stinger. Instead of grabbing it with tweezers or your finger, use a playing card or something else with a flat edge to scrape the stinger out. This method prevents you from squeezing the stinger and releasing more venom.
Because of the venom, there is going to be some swelling, and there may be some itching, as well. You can reduce the impact with some simple household items, items that you should always have in your First Aid kit. Namely, you should include baking soda and water in your kit because they both come in handy for several different things. In this case, you can make a paste by mixing the two. If at all possible, use cool water, because the cooling sensation is as helpful as the mixture itself.
If you don’t have anything on hand, find some cool water, ice, or something cold, and place it on the affected area. The sensation of cold reaches the receptors, before the irritation or pain, to reduce the effects of the sting.
If the swelling continues beyond the size of a small coin, or you just aren’t sure if the individual is allergic to bee stings, head to your nearest Costa Mesa medical clinic. Let them know what happened as soon as you walk in the door so that they can take immediate emergency precautions. Use these same methods if you or someone else is stung by any other flying insect. Bee stings might seem like minor things, but to some people they are life threatening issues.