Treating Insect Bites
Insect bites are a part of summer, and most can be effectively treated with simple first aid measures. If you experience an allergic reaction from any bite, be sure to get checked by a doctor in order to rule out any more serious causes and implications. However, in most cases, a simple home remedy is sufficient and anti-itch fixes become more pressing once the possibility of a ore serious situation is dismissed. After any bite, check for and remove any stingers that may be present, then completely wash the affected area with soap and warm water. Once the stinger has been dealt with, you can begin treating the bite itself.
A cold compress can be applied to the affected area to reduce swelling, and if the bite is severe, ice can be added to the compress. Swelling of any extremities such as the arms or legs can be alleviated by elevating the limb to help reduce any swelling. Ointments and creams containing lidocaine and hydrocortisone will help to relieve pain but are not effective in treating itchiness. If the bite is itching and causing discomfort, apply calamine lotion or an oatmeal-based paste to relieve these symptoms. Pain relievers and antihistamines are also effective in treating pain and itching caused by the bite.
Insect bites should amount to no more than an inconvenience but in the event that the reaction is more serious, it is best to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Any symptoms such as nausea, dizziness, or difficulty breathing can be a sign of a more complicated situation. Any swelling of the eyes or throat can also be a sign of a more harmful and possibly fatal reaction. Rapid heartbeats, vomiting or hives can also signal that you are experiencing an allergic reaction. If you have any of these symptoms, or you notice them in someone else, notify a doctor immediately.
If you come across an injured person that is incapacitated, it may be due to a severe allergic reaction or the result of being bit by a dangerous insect such as a scorpion. Call 911 immediately and stay with the afflicted person until medical help arrives. Place the victim on their side and be sure that their tongue is not blocking any airways. If the person is still conscious ask them about any allergies and if they have any medication with them. Try to keep them engaged and coherent through your conversation.
There is usually nothing to worry about when an insect bite occurs, the pain, swelling and discomfort caused by itching and burning are typically over within hours. A more serious allergic reaction may be happening if any of the symptoms above are present, and such cases should be addressed by a medical professional as soon as possible. First aid measures are sufficient in adequately treating any insect bites and calamine lotion or an antihistamine can help to relieve any burning or itching associated with the bite. Don’t be afraid to err on the side of caution if you think an insect bite of any type may be more serious than originally thought.