Feature

Tip of the week: How to treat an insect sting

Remove the stinger; Ice and medicate; Contain your emotions

Remove the stinger. Wasps and hornets don’t leave stingers behind, but honeybees do. “If a honeybee nailed you,” you have about 20 seconds before all the venom is released, so try to get the stinger out quickly. Scrape it out with a fingernail or, better yet, a credit card. Avoid squeezing, as that could burst open the venom sac.

Ice and medicate. Pain and swelling can be reduced by applying a cold pack. Also take an antihistamine and apply a hydrocortisone cream to reduce swelling and itching. You can apply the cream several times a day “until your symptoms improve.”

Contain your emotions. When children are stung, they need you to act as calmly as a doctor. Acknowledge the pain while treating the wound. If severe allergic symptoms occur, such as swelling of the throat or tongue, “head to an ER right away.”

Source: Men’s Health 

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