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Insect stings are uncomfortable and can often be distressing particularly if suffering from several stings.
However, the risks of being stung can be minimized by destroying wasp nests and other stinging insect nests in or near the property with this assistance of a pest control professional.
Some people are much more sensitive to insect stings than others and young children tend to be particularly sensitive.
However, 3% of the population are extremely allergic to insect stings. An allergy to insect stings can develop at any time, even if they have not reacted to a previous sting.
Call an ambulance immediately if someone has a severe reaction to an insect sting.
Symptoms may include fainting, dizziness, nausea or difficulty in breathing or swallowing.
For those with a moderate allergic to stings, there may be more general swelling around the wound. Consult your doctor if the swelling is severe or persistent.
Call an ambulance immediately if any of the following symptoms are seen within 30 minutes of a sting:
Swelling around the throat, mouth or tongue that could constrict breathing
Wheezing, choking or an inability to catch breath
Fainting, dizziness or headaches
Any chest pains
Nausea or stomach cramps
Remember, allergies to stings can develop at any time.
Those stung on two or more occasions in previous years are at higher risk from developing an allergy.
Another group at high risk are those who suffer from other allergies (such as to pollen or pets).
Try not to swat wasps or bees. This will only agitate the insect.
Do not wave your arms and try not to panic as this will also excite the insect.
If you enter an area with many stinging insects, walk calmly and slowly away.
Wear light-colored clothing with long sleeves and pants when spending long periods of time outdoors.
Cover all food and beverage containers when not consuming.
Avoid wearing perfume or using scented shampoos as some scents attract insects that sting.
People who are sensitive to insect stings should take care to minimize the risk of being stung, but there are practical steps that we can all take.
If there are high numbers of wasps or bees in your home or garden, it is likely there is a nest nearby.
It is important to deal with nests as early as possible – wasps become more aggressive in late summer and it is much safer to deal with them earlier in the year.
Ehrlich offers professional service for wasp nest removal and advice on how to get rid of wasps, hornets & bees.
Call Ehrlich Pest Control at for more advice on wasp stings and bee stings.
Insect stings should not be confused with insect bites.
An insect, like a wasp or hornet, stings to defend itself when it perceives a threat either to itself or the colony. It stings by injecting poison into or under the skin. The effect is immediate and results in a sharp, burning sensation.
While some insects sting to defend themselves, others (like mosquitoes), bite to draw blood. To give the insect time to feed, insect bites have evolved so that the pain is not as sharp as a sting (although the bite of a horse fly is very painful).
The most common stinging insects are wasps (including hornets) or bees. Wasps are the most aggressive and may sting with little provocation.
Bees are much less likely to sting, usually when they are stood or sat on. The key sign of a bee sting is that it leaves its stinger lodged inside the skin and a venomous sac will continue to pump poison for more than a minute.
In contrast, the only sign of a wasp or hornet sting is likely to be a small puncture hole.
Once stung by a wasp or bee, the surrounding area will quickly redden and a raised welt will form. The welt will lessen after a few hours, but it may remain itchy for more than a day.
There are practical steps Ehrlich recommends if you are stung by an insect.
If stung by a bee:
If stung by a bee or wasp:
To relieve itching:
If you have anymore insect sting questions or would like to setup a free inspection with an Ehrlich technician, please contact us online or call .