How to Prevent Stings This Spring

A bee stinging a man on his hand.

We all love warm sunny weather, but as spring returns so do stinging insects like wasps and bees. If you’re worried about stinging insects putting a real damper on your fun in the sun this season, consider using the following tips to help reduce the risk of getting stung by wasps or bees.

Avoid flowering plants when possible.

Flowering plants are pretty, but pollinators—like bees—love to frequent them. The more time you spend around flowers, the greater risk you may run of an incidental sting. Most bumblebees tend not to sting unless they’re put in a position to (such as being accidentally pressed against your body), but some honeybees will sting if they feel threatened.

If you do need to spend time around the flowers, try to avoid them in the early afternoon. This is when many bees are at their busiest. The middle of the morning—before the sun is at its highest point in the sky—may be the best time to handle any kind of watering or lawn maintenance.

Avoid bright or light-colored clothing or perfumes.

Much like flowers, bright and light-colored clothing can attract bees and wasps and make them hover around you. Floral fragrances such as perfumes can also make you an attractive curiosity to insects. If you plan on being outside for an extended period of time, consider skipping the fragrance and avoid bright reds. It should go without saying that floral prints are best avoided, too.

Wear shoes when outside.

Many people love the feeling of lush, green lawns underfoot, but before you head outside in the yard consider lacing up your shoes, especially if your yard is home to any clover—a common favorite of bees. As painful as a bee sting may be on your arms and legs, it won’t be much fun on your feet.

Clean up food after eating outdoors.

Planning a picnic can be lots of fun, but don’t forget to pick up after yourself. Leftover sugary snacks and garbage can often lead to the unwanted presence of hungry stinging insects, particularly wasps. When these insects decide to stop foraging and start fighting—especially if they feel that you’ve threatened them—you’ll wish you’d bagged up all your trash appropriately.

How do I treat a bee or wasp sting?

If you do get stung, don’t panic. Carefully remove the stinger, if possible, but not with tweezers. The female bee leaves behind the stinger and venom sac and squeezing it with tweezers will push more venom into the wound. Get a credit card and gently scrape at the stinger to remove it.

Wash the sting with soap and water and apply a cold pack to reduce the swelling. Taking an over-the-counter painkiller can also help reduce discomfort.

Bee and wasp stings are painful, but can sometimes cause a severe allergic reaction. Wasp stings are especially worrisome; wasps do not leave their stingers behind and can sting multiple times if they’re defending their colony.

Keep a close eye on anyone—especially children—who has gotten stung by a wasp or bee.

Call McCall Service for Help with Wasp Removal

Steering clear of bees as they go about their business is usually the best practice. Wasps, on the other hand, should be removed as quickly as possible—but only by a professional. McCall Service can help eliminate wasps in and around your home. Call us today to schedule your appointment for it and other prompt pest control services.

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