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Insect Bites and Stings | Insect Bites Treatment | How to Treat Insect Bites and Stings | 2018

Updated: Apr 14

Whether it's a wasp sting, bee sting, hornet sting, tick bite or horsefly bite this complete guide will teach you how to treat and identify them.

Hey everyone, this weeks video is about how to identify and treat insect bites or stings. With the recent warm weather we have had in the UK, Public Health England have revealed that calls to the NHS helpline 111 about insect bites are almost double the rate they normally are at this time of year.

So I decided to make a video to help anyone who has recently been bit or stung by an insect. Feel free to spread the knowledge to friends and family.


Contact your GP, Pharmacist or call NHS 111 for advice if,

• You're worried about a bite or sting.

• Your symptoms don't start to improve within a few days or are getting worse.

• You've been stung or bitten in your mouth or throat, or near your eyes

a large area (around 10cm or more) around the bite becomes red and swollen.

• You have symptoms of a wound infection, such as pus or increasing pain, swelling or redness.

• You have symptoms of a more widespread infection, such as a fever, swollen glands and other flu-like symptoms.


Dial 999 for an ambulance immediately if you or someone else has symptoms of a severe reaction, such as:

• Wheezing or difficulty breathing

• A swollen face, mouth or throat

• Nausea or vomiting

• A fast heart rate

• Dizziness or feeling faint

• Difficulty swallowing

• Loss of consciousness

Emergency treatment in hospital is needed in these cases.

For more information about anaphylaxis and what to do please visit:


To treat an insect bite or sting,

• Remove the sting or tick if it's still in the skin (As demonstrated in video).

• Wash the affected area with soap and water.

• Apply a cold compress (such as a flannel or cloth cooled with cold water) or an ice pack to any swelling for at least 10 minutes.

• Raise or elevate the affected area if possible, as this can help reduce swelling.

• Avoid scratching the area, to reduce the risk of infection.

• Avoid traditional home remedies, such as vinegar and bicarbonate of soda, as they're unlikely to help.

• The pain, swelling and itchiness can sometimes last a few days. Ask your pharmacist about over-the-counter treatments that can help, such as painkillers, creams for itching and antihistamines.


Lyme disease is a bacterial infection that can be spread to humans by infected ticks. It's usually easier to treat if it's diagnosed early.

For more information on Lyme disease and removing ticks properly please visit:


There are some simple precautions you can take to reduce your risk of being bitten or stung by insects,

• Remain calm and move away slowly if you encounter wasps, hornets or bees – don't wave your arms around or swat at them.

• Cover exposed skin by wearing long sleeves and trousers.

• Wear shoes when outdoors.

• Apply insect repellent to exposed skin – repellents that contain 50% DEET (diethyltoluamide) are most effective.

• Avoid using products with strong perfumes, such as soaps, shampoos and deodorants – these can attract insects.

• Be careful around flowering plants, rubbish, compost, stagnant water, and in outdoor areas where food is served.

• You may need to take extra precautions if you're travelling to part of the world where there's a risk of serious illnesses. For example, you may be advised to take antimalarial tablets to help prevent malaria.

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About Me:

Prescribing Media Pharmacist | Extreme Optimist | Bringing Science Through New Videos Every 2 Weeks - Monday 4PM(GMT) YouTube.


This video is for information only and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of medical conditions. Abraham The Pharmacist has used all reasonable care in compiling the information but make no warranty as to its accuracy. Always consult a doctor or other healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment of medical conditions.



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