Australia has an abundance of insect species that either bite or sting, one of which is the common bee. When a bee stings a person, the stung area itches and swells. What’s worse, the venom in a bee sting could trigger a severe allergic reaction. Grave symptoms, such as vomiting, difficulty breathing and a drop in blood pressure can kill a person if he or she does not receive any form of medical attention immediately. This is where first aid training will go a long way in helping people who have been stung.
Find and Remove the Stinger
The bee venom sac, which stays put on the victim’s skin, can take at most three minutes to inject all of its venom. Thus, it is necessary to remove the stinger immediately as it reduces the severity of the symptoms.
To determine if the stinger is still present, examine the sting site for a small black dot and remove it right away once found. Refrain from pulling out the stinger using tweezers as you could squeeze more poison into the wound. Instead, use a hard object such as blunt knife or a credit card to swipe over the area and remove the stinger.
Elevate and Wash the Sting Area
To limit swelling, gently raise the stung area as high as possible. If the bee stings the hand or arm, use an elevation sling to provide support and comfort. Use clean soap and water to carefully clean the sting site. This reduces swelling and prevents further infection.
Manage the Swelling and Symptoms
To reduce the body’s inflammatory response, apply ice or cold packs around the sting site. In addition, dabbing hydrocortisone cream on the sting can help lessen swelling and redness. Alternatively, you can apply calamine lotion or a mixture of water and baking soda to the wound. To address itching, offer antihistamines such as diphenhydramine.
After applying first aid, it is critical that you seek further help. If you notice any severe allergic reaction, dial 000 and request immediate medical assistance.