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Insect stings

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Updated: 1/14/2003 11:29 am
Signs and symptoms that a child has been stung by an insect include pain, local swelling, burning, and itching. If the child is allergic, there also may be nausea, shock, or unconsciousness. If a child has been stung by a wasp or bee and the stinger is visible, remove it by gently scraping it off, and don't squeeze the stung area. Other flying insects don't leave venom sacs. Some children have reactions to fire ant stings that include difficulty in breathing, fever, and an upset stomach. If the child isn't allergic to a sting, wash with soap and water and soak a cloth in cold water or wrap in ice and press over the area of the sting to reduce pain or swelling. Other treatments, including antihistamine creams, pills, or home remedies, such as baking soda or vinegar, may not be appropriate, so check with a doctor. Call for medical help immediately if you know a child is allergic, or if there's coughing; wheezing; sudden difficulty in breathing; hives or itching all over the body; extreme swelling near the eye, lips, or genitals; tightening of the throat; or any weakness, collapse, or falling into unconsciousness.

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