With the hot temps this summer, I have been spending tons of time outside with my daughter playing in her little inflatable pool. I think the bees must love the bright colors on her pool, and I got to thinking, what if she (or I) got stung? Luckily it hasn’t happened yet, and I was a kid myself the last time I was stung, so I looked it up. I am glad I did because I would have totally thought that you should get tweezers to get the stinger out like a splinter. Not the case! Here’s what you should you do (information found on babycenter):
A bee’s stinger works like an automatic pump — the longer it stays in, the more venom it releases — so get it out as quickly as you can. Look for a little black dot in the center of a reddened area and scrape it off with a fingernail or credit card. DO NOT squeeze the stinger with your fingers or tweezers, because that could release more venom. Once you’ve removed the stinger, wash the area with soap and water. Then apply an ice pack for 15 minutes or so to minimize swelling and relieve pain. (If you don’t have an ice pack, grab a package of frozen vegetables or drop a few ice cubes in a plastic bag. Wrap whatever you’re going to use in a washcloth so it doesn’t touch your child’s skin directly.) You may want to apply a paste of baking soda and water to the area, to soothe it and draw out some of the venom. (Simply dab it on, let it dry, and rinse it off.) Luckily, the pain usually begins to go away after a few hours, although the swelling may increase for another day or two.
In the meantime, you may want to give your child the appropriate dose of acetaminophen to ease his discomfort. Continue to apply icepacks, and, if your child is still really uncomfortable, you can try an over- the-counter children’s antihistamine to help relieve any itching and swelling.
Image and more information can be found on Kids Health.