A bee sting strictly means a sting from a bee (honey bee, bumblebee, sweat bee etc). In the vernacular it can mean a sting of a bee, wasp, hornet, or yellowjacket.
The insects that are most likely to cause medical problems are bees (including the domestic honey bee, its Africanized “killer bee” race, and the bumble bee), wasps which include the paper wasps, hornets, and yellow jackets, and ants including the fire ant. These insects are all in the Hymenoptera order, and thus stings from them are occasionally called Hymenoptera stings.
Bee stings can be just painful or the can be fatal where allergic complications (anaphylaxis) develop from a bee sting (venom). The first course of action in a bee sting is to remove the bee stinger as quickly as possible by scraping it out or pulling it out using the finger tips or other instrument. The longer a bee stinger remain in the body, the more severe the reaction will be. Ensure the wound is cleaned before applying any of the remedies below.
Remedies for Bee Sting
- Basil is one of the most effective bee sting remedies. Crush up fresh basil leaves and apply them directly on the bee sting.
- The skin of the papaya is a good external treatment for skin wounds and places that do not heal quickly, the pulp can also be used. Papain the compound found in papaya is said to be able to break down the proteins found in the bee venom. Take fresh papaya, and slice off a slice. Apply it to the bee stings for about 1 hour.
- One of the most widespread “weeds” in the world, plantain is a first-choice remedy for many skin ailments. It is commonly found in lawns and can be identified by its parallel-veined leaves. For bee sting remedy chew plantain leave (mixed with enough saliva) to form a poultice which is then applied to the area.
- Take an onion and slice it. Apply the slice to the bee sting and either hold it there or tape it in place for about 1 hour.
- Baking soda is a soothing bee sting remedy. Use baking soda and water to create a paste that is applied to the area of the sting. Another solution is to place baking soda on the bee sting then pour vinegar on it until the baking soda dissolves away. This is said to help in removing both the venom and the stinger.
- Apply ice to the bee sting after ensuring the stinger is completely removed. Ice cools the skin numbs the pain and reduces blood flow to the cold area which reduces swelling. Apply for 20 minutes at a time with 15 minute intervals.
- Apply toothpastes containing glycerin to the stung area. The glycerin dries out the venom and alkaline substance found in toothpaste will neutralize acidic venom.
- Essential oils have healing and rejuvenating properties that can help to reduce the pain and swelling caused by bee sting. Lavender or castor oils are good choices.
- Apis Mellifica is a common homeopathic bee sting remedy. The venom of the honeybee is used as a unique alternative form of healing and is a known bee sting therapy.