Insect stings and
bites can be irritating. But in most cases, symptoms begin to disappear by the
next day and don't need medical care. However, kids who are allergic
to insect stings or bites might get life-threatening symptoms that need emergency
If your child has injectable epinephrine (EpiPen), give it right away, then call
911. Tell them your child is having a life-threatening emergency. If someone
is with you, have that person call 911 while you give the epinephrine.
If your child is conscious and you don't have epinephrine, give diphenhydramine
(Benadryl or a store brand), then call 911 as above.
If there are no signs of a severe reaction:
If your child was stung and you can see the insect's stinger, remove it as quickly
as possible by scraping the skin horizontally with the edge of a credit card or your
Wash the area with soap and water.
Apply ice wrapped in a towel or cloth or a cool wet cloth to the area to relieve
pain and swelling.
Get Medical Care if:
the sting or bite is near or inside the mouth
your child has a known severe allergy to a stinging or biting insect
injectable epinephrine (EpiPen) was used
the site looks infected (has increasing redness, warmth, swelling, pain, or pus
several hours or longer after the sting or bite)
Teach kids to avoid:
walking barefoot while on grass
playing in areas where insects nest or congregate
drinking from soda cans outside (these attract insects)