Tips to deal with insect stings

Published on June 27, 2012 at 1:06 AM · No Comments

With the start of summer comes the appearance of common stinging insects, such as bees, wasps, hornets and yellowjackets, and the various related health risks that range from irritating but relatively harmless stings to the threat of serious allergic reaction. The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) stresses that when it comes to stinging insects, the best way to avoid the associated health risks is to practice simple prevention and treatment tips.    

"It's important to understand what we can do to mitigate the health problems these stinging insects present," said Dr. Jorge Parada, medical spokesperson for the NPMA. "For most people, painful stings typically result in swelling and local soreness, but 3 percent of the population experience more widespread allergic reactions, like rashes and hives, and extreme cases can result in life threatening symptoms like shortness of breath."

Stinging insects are beneficial in that they pollinate plants and flowers and eat other harmful pests, but they also dole out painful stings and cause people anxiety about being stung. While in reality, bees and yellowjackets rarely sting unless provoked, more aggressive species like wasps can sting in painful attacks if they feel threatened.

The NPMA offers the following tips when dealing with stinging insects:

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