You're outside peacefully working in the garden when, all of a sudden, you hear a loud and distinct "ouch" in your child's voice. Your little one has been stung by a bee, and your first instinct is to kiss him or her and search for a way to provide relief. However, before you reach for the over-the-counter pain medication, there are more natural ways to soothe your child's discomfort. Here are three quick and natural bee-sting remedies:
1. First Things First
Before you ease the pain associated with a bee sting it is important to treat the wound and watch for signs of a severe allergic reaction. According to WebMD, the signs of a serious allergic reaction to a bee sting include
- nausea and diarrhea
- trouble breathing
- sudden swelling of the lips, tongue, eyes or throat
If your child is experiencing these symptoms, it is vital to call 911 immediately. If you have one available, you can also treat your child's symptoms with an epinephrine injector. Even if you have an epinephrine injector and your child's symptoms are subsiding, it is vital to still take him or her to the emergency room. Your child could suffer a strong reaction once the epinephrine wears off.
If your child is not allergic to bees, go ahead and treat the sting at home. Begin by carefully removing the stinger as quickly as possible with your nails or a pair of tweezers. Next, clean the wound with warm soapy water. Once the wound is clean, you can apply any one of these natural pain relievers.
Baking Soda Paste
One of the most effective ways to treat a bee sting is with a mixture of one half cup baking soda and one tablespoon of white vinegar. If needed, add a little water until you create a paste. Apply the paste directly to the affected area and let it sit for 10 or 15 minutes. Bee stings are naturally acidic, and the baking soda paste will help neutralize these acids, which will bring your child some relief.
If you don't have baking soda handy, apply a baking soda toothpaste, instead. Let it sit for 10 to 15 minutes and wipe it away with a damp cloth.
It seems bizarre that the food produced by bees would be one of the most effective ways to find relief from the insect's sting, but it's true! After you clean the wound, apply a thin layer of honey directly to the affected area. Cover the honey with a damp cloth or a piece of paper towel and let it remain for at least 30 minutes.
If your child is allergic to honey, avoid this treatment to prevent an unwanted reaction.
The weed plantain, which shouldn't be confused with the banana-like plantain, is a low-growing perennial that features rosettes and ribbed leaves. The plantain also grows long, leafless stalks in the summertime. Chances are you will find plantain growing in your backyard because it is very common throughout the United States.
To treat the sting, pluck off a few plantain leaves and gently roll them between your thumb and finger. This releases the juice of the plantain leaves, which is what you will use to treat the sting. Apply the juice directly to the sting and let it remain for 10 to 15 minutes. Wipe it away with a damp cloth.
From the juice of the plantain leaves to a paste made from baking soda and white vinegar, there are several simple, quick, and natural ways to help your child find relief from the pain of a bee sting. However, it is vital that before you treat the pain you make sure your child isn't showing symptoms of a severe allergic reaction. For more information and to test your child for allergies, contact a facility like Oak Brook Allergists.