If you’ve never been stung by a bee, you don’t know whether you’re allergic to bee stings. About 7 percent of the general population is allergic to these stings. It can be lifesaving to know what the symptoms of a bee sting allergy are.
At Medinet Family Care Clinic in Houston, Texas, we take care of you from head to toe. We’re there for you not only for scheduled appointments, but also for urgent care needs. We are here Monday through Saturday, ready to care for you when an accident or injury happens.
Bee stings are fairly common in children. If you have a child, they’re outside much of the time in the summer, and a bee sting can happen any time. If you’re an adult who loves being outside, taking walks in the woods, camping and hiking, you may sustain a bee sting, too.
Normal reaction to a bee sting
Most people have mild reactions to a bee sting. You’ll have a sharp, burning pain where the bee sting is, and your skin may swell in that area; you’ll have a red welt. Place hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion on the sting to help ease the pain and take an antihistamine to calm the inflammation. In most cases the pain subsides and dissipates in several hours.
Mild allergic reaction
On the other hand, you could have swollen skin in an expanded area over the next day or so. Your skin may be extremely red, and you could possibly develop a rash. This reaction may not calm down after a few hours; it may take a few days. Follow the same treatment as noted above, but make an appointment with our office.
You don’t know whether you’ll have a more extreme reaction if you get stung again. You could have the same type of moderate reaction, or you could have a severe reaction.
We can arrange for a test to determine whether you have a bee sting allergy. If you’re allergic, we provide an EpiPen prescription. EpiPens help prevent life-threatening complications when you’re allergic to bee stings. We make sure you know how to use your EpiPen.
Severe allergic reactions to bee stings
If you have a severe allergy to bee stings, you need emergency treatment right away. You could develop anaphylaxis, a life-threatening condition that occurs when your body experiences shock and your breathing is blocked.
If you are allergic, you need to know that a reaction can occur either right away or up to 12 hours after the sting. Make sure you have your EpiPen with you during that time.
If you have any of the following conditions when stung by a bee, call 911 and then use your EpiPen:
- Red welts on your skin (hives)
- Throat closing; unable to breathe well
- Swollen tongue and throat
- Rapid, weak pulse
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- Dizziness or fainting
Call Medinet Family Care Clinic or book appointments online for your family’s primary care needs and urgent care needs. We’re here for you.