What's Going Around: Bee Stings

By: Stephanie Satchell Email
By: Stephanie Satchell Email

July 16, 2012

If you plan on doing some yard work or watching your children play outside, doctors are warning people to be on the lookout for bees. In this week's What's Going Around we're focusing on bee strings.

Dr. Yates Sealander of Madison Family Medicine is providing our medical information and says patients are coming in with wasp or bee stings.

Symptoms of a bee sting include immediate pain, redness, swelling and itching. Doctors say there's an increased possibility of a severe reaction if you have multiple stings. Also, bee stings get infected more often than any other insect bite. Symptoms typically last about 24 hours after getting stung by a bee.

When it comes to treatment, Dr. Sealander recommends scraping off the stinger if it's still present, applying ice, using Benadryl for itching and taking ibuprofen or acetaminophen for pain. Dr. Sealander adds that you should wash the bite site and apply antibiotic ointment.

Avoiding contact with bees is the best way to prevent bee stings.

Dr. Sealander says that most stings do not require medical attention. If your reaction is greater than ten inches at the site or you have a shortness of breath, fever, a rash all over your body, trouble breathing, or swelling of the lips or tongue you should get to your doctor.

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