Angry Bees And Stings: What To Do If You Are Allergic To Bee Stings

September 8, 2022

Angry bee buzzing into the Worcester area to sting people and send them to AFC Urgent Care Worcester for bee sting treatment

BUZZ BUZZ! We hear them buzzing! There are a number of kids and parents coming in with painful and sore welts from stings this time of year, which is known as “Angry Bee Season”. The bees and wasps don't seem to care that it's the new school year! 

Around this time of the year, stinging bees and wasps become very aggressive because they are preparing their queen for the winter, and are more vigilant near the hive. This aggravated behavior grows as their local food resources are depleted, leaving them hungry. So, be careful, or they’ll sting you!

AFC Urgent Care Worcester has developed a guide for you on some immediate steps you can take if you are allergic and get stung by a bee.

Got stung by a bee or a wasp? Here’s what to do next!

  • A bee will usually leave behind a stinger attached to a venom sac. Try to remove it as quickly as possible using a scraping motion (DO NOT TWEEZE IT), without pinching the venom sac at the end. (Wasps don't leave their stingers in the skin after stinging, which means they can sting more than once.)
  • Wash the area carefully with soap and water. Do this two to three times a day until the skin is healed.
  • Apply an ice pack wrapped in a cloth or a cold, wet washcloth for a few minutes.
  • Give acetaminophen or ibuprofen for pain.
  • For pain and itching, give an over-the-counter oral antihistamine if your child's health care provider says it's OK; follow dosage instructions for your child's age and weight. You could also apply a corticosteroid cream or calamine lotion to the sting area.
  • A sting anywhere in the mouth needs immediate medical attention because this can quickly cause severe swelling that may block airways.
  • Get medical care if you notice a large skin rash or swelling around the sting site, or if swelling or pain lasts for more than 3 days, which could be signs of an infection.

How to avoid getting stung by a bee

Although it would be nice to avoid bee stings altogether, we are seeing a lot of bee stings and allergic reactions. Here’s a list of things you can try so that you can avoid getting stung by a bee. 

  • Keep garbage in sealed receptacles. When out at a public park or playground, steer clear of open or full garbage bins as bees are often nearby
  • Avoid brightly colored and flower print clothing to help keep bees away.
  • Avoid fragrances or cosmetics with floral scents.
  • Call a pest professional if you notice a hive or nest on your property
  • If you are outside and have sweets around, it is best to keep drinks closed and put food away. Bees LOVE sweets. You don’t want to attract a colony of bees while on a picnic. 
  • If you are going into a field where there will likely be bees, wear long pants and shoes that cover your whole foot.
  • If a bee “bumps” into you, you might be near their hive, so the best thing to do is to run before they come out and swarm you.

Signs of a serious or potentially life-threatening allergic reaction to bees or wasps

There might be a chance you or a loved one might get stung by a bee in the next couple of weeks. If you’re highly allergic, we highly suggest being familiar with the signs of a serious or potentially fatal allergic reaction to a bee sting.

Use an epinephrine auto-injector  (epipen) if it's available, and either come in to AFC Urgent Care Worcester or call 911 immediately if you notice any of these signs:

  • swelling of the lips, tongue, or face
  • dizziness or fainting
  • nausea or vomiting
  • high fever
  • serious headache 
  • wheezing or difficulty breathing
  • tightness in throat or chest
  • throat begins to close up
  • racing heart

Ready for angry bee season? AFC Urgent Care Worcester is!

AFC Urgent Care Worcester  is your number one go to urgent care in central Massachusetts. We accept most insurances. If you or a loved one has been stung by a bee or have more questions, AFC Urgent Care Worcster can help treat bee stings and bee allergies. We're here for you with immediate care, 7 days a week.

You can walk-in or make an appointment online for bee stings, and stinger removals.

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Call (508) 755-4010 for more information about our Worcester urgent care services.

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