Although, for most people, some simple at-home treatments will alleviate the pain and resolve the inflammation and redness associated with a bee sting, some individuals experience allergic reactions that require emergency care.
At Advanced Allergy & Asthma Centers, we help children and adults identify insect sting allergies and provide the necessary care to prevent, manage, and treat reactions.
It’s essential to keep in mind that it’s not just bee venom that produces these types of reactions. Other insect stings such as ones from wasps, yellow jackets, hornets, and fire ants can trigger a range of painful and potentially harmful responses.
If you’ve had an allergic reaction or think you may have a bee sting allergy, it’s best to get evaluated. At Advanced Allergy & Asthma Centers, we’ll review your medical history and discuss your response to insect stings in the past. We’ll also perform a clinical exam, skin prick test, an intradermal test, and blood testing as indicated.
Treatment varies based on the severity of the reaction. While antihistamines, pain, and anti-inflammatory medications may suffice for mild reactions, more significant reactions can require corticosteroids or an injection of epinephrine. Immunotherapy in the form of allergy shots can also help reduce the severity of a bee sting allergy.
People with bee sting allergies are advised to carry an autoinjector of epinephrine to administer in the immediate aftermath of a sting.
As with all allergic reactions, especially severe ones, prevention is key. Some simple measures and common sense steps can help reduce your exposure to bees and the risk of getting stung.