As the summer flowers bloom, so also come the bees! While these important pollinators may make delicious honey, they also pack a painful sting. These stings can even be made worse with an allergic reaction – sometimes even life-threatening – and you may not know you’re allergic! Pay attention to these dos and don’ts to help keep you and your team safe!
– Scrape the stinger with a badge or card to avoid more venom going into the site.
– Wash the sting site with warm water and soap.
– Apply hydrocortisone cream can relieve itching and swelling at the sting site.
– Use ice or a cold compress on the sting site to reduce swelling.
– Make sudden movements. This includes swatting at other bees, jumping up and down, or running away.
– Pull out the stinger with your fingers or tweezers. This may push more venom into the site.
After a bee sting, pain, swelling, and redness are common and will subside over the first few days. However, during that time you should be on the lookout for these symptoms even if you’re not known to be allergic to bee stings.
– Numbness or swelling of the lips, tongue, mouth, or windpipe
– Difficulty breathing
– A weak, rapid pulse
– Skin reactions including hives and flushed or pale skin.
If you are experiencing any of these signs, call 911 immediately and have a co-worker call the supervisor or onsite medic.
If you are allergic to bee stings:
For those that have severe allergic reactions to bee stings, they have a 25%-65% chance of anaphylaxis next time they’re stung.
– Always have your Epi-Pen with you. Be sure it is not expired. IF it is expired, you can still use it; however, you may need an additional dose.
– Loosen tight clothing and lay flat on a surface with legs elevated. Use an Epi-Pen as directed or get help to administer the dose.
Be sure to check out our other blogs for further injury prevention education and tips from Work Right NW!