Home Remedies for Bee Stings

bee stings
Bee stings are painful, to say the least, and in some cases, they can lead to fatal symptoms. Honeybee stings puncture the skin with a stinger that remains stuck on the skin. Wasp or yellow jacket stingers do not remain on the skin but still manage to inject the venom. The most common symptoms of a bee or wasp sting include minor swelling, sharp pain, redness and itching. Home remedies for bee stings are usually adequate for such signs.

Some people can experience allergic reactions, which are more severe, and may need urgent medical attention. Bee sting reactions are local toxic reactions caused by the venom, contained inside a sac. Proper and timely bee sting treatment is vital for controlling symptoms and preventing life threatening situations.

Here are some home remedies that can be useful for mild to moderate symptoms.

Remove the Stinger Immediately

Remove the stinger immediately by scraping it with fingernails or edge of a bank card. Try to avoid pinching or using tweezers, as it may squeeze out more venom. Be sure to remove the sting, with any available means, as a first step in treatment.

After removing the stinger, wash the area with soap and water. Apply a cold compress to reduce the pain and swelling.


1. Honey


Apply some honey on the sting site to treat the symptoms.

2. Lavender Oil

Alternatively, a few drops of lavender essential oil can provide some relief, provided you are not allergic to it.

3. Garlic


Garlic is another handy home remedy for honeybee sting. Crush one or two garlic cloves and apply on the wound. Put a gauze or medical tape to hold the cloves.

4. Baking Soda

Apply a paste of baking soda and water to help neutralize the acidic venom released by a bee bite.

5. Vinegar

For wasp and hornet stings, soak cotton in vinegar and apply on the stung area. The acidic vinegar helps neutralize the alkaline nature of the venom from these insects.

Use Medications or Creams to ease Discomfort

Take antihistamines or apply creams containing antihistamine to treat bee sting swelling and itchiness. Over-the-counter painkillers such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen can help provide pain relief.

Watch out for Allergy Symptoms

Yellow jacket stings can cause severe allergic reactions and anaphylactic shock. Be sure to move to a safe place, as a yellow jacket can sting more than once.

Seek medical attention if you find anaphylaxis symptoms, such as breathing difficulties, nausea, hives and sudden drop in blood pressure. There may also be swelling on other parts of the body, in addition to the sting site. Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening condition that requires emergency medical care.

A person having a history of anaphylaxis, or severe bee sting allergy, should carry bee sting kits that contain EpiPen, an epinephrine injector. If you have an EpiPen, use it immediately in response to a wasp sting, without waiting for adverse symptoms.

Avoid Panic

This is very important. Most people will only have local or mild reactions to bee or wasp stings. Panic can affect the person’s response to timely and proper treatment for bee sting.

If you are with someone who has been stung, stay with that person and offer required treatment procedures while monitoring any allergic symptoms.

Pain and swelling due to normal local reactions usually subside within several hours. Large local reactions can take up to a week or more to heal.

These are some useful bee and wasp sting treatment options that you can apply at home. These should serve as a first-aid or immediate response. Consult a medical professional if discomfort persists.

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