Bee Sting/Insect Sting Allergy

Though bee and other insect stings are usually harmless, for some children they can be deadly, producing what is called anaphylaxis. These insects include honeybees, yellowjackets, hornets, wasps, and fire ants.

Allergic reactions usually occur the second time a child is stung by one of these insects, as the body’s immune system, which normally fights infections, overreacts to the insect's venom.

The most effective treatment after such a sting is injectable epinephrine. This drug should always be kept handy if it is known that your child is susceptible to allergic reactions. Friends, relatives, and school officials should be aware of his/her condition as well.

You should be seeing an allergy specialist are well, who may also offer the possibility of allergy shots to lessen the effects of the insect venom.

Steps should be taken to avoid insect bites, of course, but if one does occur, care should be taken to scrape off the stinger (with a credit card, for example) instead of a tweezer which may actually cause more venom to enter the site.

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