Children love to play outside in the warm summer weather. Outdoor activities allow them to get exercise, while moderate exposure to sunlight allows their bodies to produce vitamin D, which is important for developing bones. Nevertheless, outdoor activities put your children at risk for wasp stings. Wasp pest control services in Cambridge can help keep the stinging insects off your property, but your children could encounter them in other places, such as parks and playgrounds. Therefore, it is important for you to know how to treat wasps stings and how to prevent them in the first place.
How To Treat Wasp Stings
A wasp sting injects venom into the skin. Most people react in some way to this irritant. The reaction is usually mild, producing swelling and pain that resolves on its own within a few hours or days.
However, some people are severely allergic to wasp stings. Severe wasp allergies are not common; only about two million people in the U.S. are severely allergic, which represents only about 5% of the total population. Nevertheless, a severe allergic reaction to a wasp sting can cause anaphylactic shock, a life-threatening emergency that causes difficulty breathing. If you have a young child who is allergic to wasp stings, you and his or her caregivers should always carry an EpiPen so your child can be injected with lifesaving epinephrine in the event of a wasp sting. When your child is old enough to take responsibility, he or she should carry the EpiPen whenever outside.
If your child does not have a severe wasp allergy, the following first aid can be used to treat a wasp sting:
- Look to see if the stinger is still in the skin. If so, remove it as soon as possible to prevent it from injecting more venom into the skin. It is okay to grasp the stinger with your fingers or a pair of tweezers to pull it out.
- To reduce pain and swelling, apply an ice pack or bag of frozen vegetables to the affected site. Wrap ice or frozen food in a towel to prevent damage to the skin.
- If the sting is in an appendage such as an arm or leg, have your child elevate it to decrease swelling.
- Medicate with ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) for pain and an antihistamine to stop the reaction.
How To Prevent Wasp Stings
While it is important to know how to treat a wasp sting, it is better to prevent them in the first place. It may not be possible to prevent all wasp stings, but you can reduce the risk by avoiding attracting wasps to you and your children.
- Try to avoid dressing your children in shades of blue or purple; these colours attract wasps. Instead, try dressing your children in red because wasps cannot perceive this colour.
- Use hygiene products that are unscented for you and your children. Shampoos and lotions with fruity or floral fragrances can attract wasps.
- Picnics are fun, but large amounts of food sitting outdoors can attract wasps and other pesky insects. During the picnic, cover up food containers to the extent possible. Afterward, be sure to clear away the food, remove dirty dishes, and dispose of all garbage. Don’t linger around trash cans as garbage tends to attract wasps.
- Teach your children how to react to wasps. If they see one flying around, they should move away slowly. If a wasp lands on them, they should keep calm and hold still until it flies away. Under no circumstances should they panic, scream, or wave their arms around as this agitates the wasp and increases the chances for a sting.
Call Truly Nolen for Wasp Pest Control Services in Cambridge
Proximity to a wasp nest increases the possibility of a sting. If you find a wasp nest on your property, call Truly Nolen for identification and removal.