why do wasp stings swell so much
First, if youБre stung on the hand, remove any rings from your fingers immediately. If stung by a bee, the bee usually leaves a sac of venom and a stinger in your skin. Remove the stinger within 30 seconds to avoid receiving more venom. Gently scrape the sac and stinger out with a fingernail or a stiff-edged object like a credit card. DonБt squeeze the sac or pull on the stinger, or more venom will get into you. Wash the stung area with soap and water, then apply an antiseptic. Apply a soothing ointment, like a hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion, and cover the area with a dry, sterile bandage. If swelling is a problem, apply an ice pack or cold compress to the area. Take an over-the-counter oral antihistamine to ease itching, swelling, and hives. DonБt give this medication to children under 2 years old or to pregnant women unless your doctor says itБs OK. (If youБre pregnant, itБs best to talk to your doctor before you take any medicine. )
You can also take an БNSAIDБ pain reliever such as ibuprofen. Read the label on any medicines first. Parents of children and people with medical conditions should talk with a pharmacist if they have questions about a medicine's use.
If you have a severe allergic sting reaction, youБll need epinephrine, which you can inject yourself before you call 911. Usually, this shot will stop a more severe allergic reaction from happening. YouБll still need emergency medical care, even if the symptoms seem to stop. You may need to stay overnight at the hospital. If youБve ever had allergic reactions to an insect sting, carry epinephrine with you wherever you go. How Can I Avoid Being Stung? You canБt completely. But these steps make it less likely. 1. Learn to recognize insect nests and avoid them. Yellow jackets nest in the ground in dirt mounds or old logs and walls. Honeybees camp out in beehives. Hornets and wasps make their homes in bushes, trees, and on buildings. Do not rely only on the internet. Consult your family doctor or community nurse. Initial pain which can feel quite severe, especially to a child. PThe pain is much worse than pain from nettle stings or injections for immunisations. PPersonal experience is that the pain is very bad for around 30 to 40 minutes if not treated and then usually begins to fade. Treatment can instantly reduce pain sensations to minimal. Local swelling at, and nearby, the wasp sting site.
PUntreated this can be very marked swelling. PThe swelling can cause pain itself so for example a badly swollen hand will hurt for many hours, long after the pain of the sting has gone. PSwelling in itself is not usually harmful unless an eyelid becomes so puffy that there might be pressure on the nerves at the back of the eye (this needs prompt medical attention), or the airway is affected. PStings to the lip, mouth, inside or outside of the throat all need to receive prompt medical attention if swelling begins to develop. PSwelling on a hand might cause a ring to cut blood supply off so rings should always be removed when the sting is on the hand. Infection of the sting site need not occur if proper care is taken. PAlthough wasps visit dirty places like dustbins, rubbish bins and compost bins the only part in contact with you is the sting which had been held inside the wasp. PIt seems unlikely the sting would carry much in the way of infection. P If the wasp stings through dirt on your skin due to the whatever you were doing prior to the sting, for example gardening or cleaning your dustbin then infection is more likely. PAny scratching of the irritated site may also lead to infection.
PSimple hygiene measures immediately and good aftercare to minimise scratching greatly reduce the risk of infection. Severe systemic allergic reaction ( anaphylaxis ). PThis is a very serious situation which can be life threatening. Statistically this occurs Prarely and the even more rare chance of it causing death are mathematically less than your chance of winning a large amount of money on the lottery (In England 8 people in the whole year in 2004 and 2 people in one month in August 2006). PNo-one knows when their next sting may be the one to cause this serious total body reaction to a wasp sting. Symptoms and collapse can occur suddenly within the hour of the sting and so extremely prompt emergency medical care is required within 20 40 minutes of allergic reactions starting. Fear of wasps in case of future stings and serious reactions. PThis fear can cause people to get stung again due to their reactions when a wasp is near them and can even cause other injury due to road traffic collisions if a wasp enters a car during driving. PAs it is actually very easy to avoid stings this fear can be minimised by developing understanding of how wasps live and what they want when they are near us.
PIt should be very easy to become less fearful by reading through this website Wasp sting aftercare is something you need to know about before you or your child gets stung. PIn the time it takes you to read this information severe reactions may have occurred and so it is better to have a thorough prior understanding of what to do and how to recognise and prevent problems occurring. PJust like scalds with very hot water, prompt first aid for wasp stings is vital and can reduce the subsequent health problems. There are some government organised information websites about what to do about wasp stings and as a health care professional I must advise you to use those sites as your main source of information and guidance. PCurrently excellent examples of these sites are called NHSDirect and PatientUK. PThere are links to their websites below (put stings into the search facility on their home page). PAdvice on those sites is updated more regularly than this website and their advice will always take into account any new evidence. If your Health Centre has a website you should also check what your family doctor advises for wasp sting treatment.
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