Wasps and Hornets

How long does it take for the burn stop from a bee sting?

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2014-04-03 14:18:10

Local reactions such as burning pain and itching, although

unpleasant, are not considered signs of an allergic reaction to bee

or wasp stings.

A sharp, burning sensation at the site of a bee sting is a

normal, non-allergic reaction and can last up to two hours, though

it often subsides in a few minutes. Soreness at the sting site can

last several hours, or even a few days.

Other normal reactions include redness at the site of the sting,

a small white dot where the stinger penetrated the skin, and

swelling around the location. Itching also can be quite


A stronger local reaction sometimes occurs in about 10 percent

of people, which can also include extreme redness and swelling at

the site of the sting which grows larger over a day or two. This

type of local reaction usually resolves in about a week.

However, there are more serious symptoms after a bee or wasp

sting that should prompt a call to 9-1-1 right away, even if the

person experiences only one or two of these:

difficulty breathing;

swelling of the person's throat and tongue;

a weak and rapid pulse;

low blood pressure;

nausea, vomiting, and/or diarrhea;

dizziness or fainting; and

loss of consciousness.

These likely indicate a severe allergic reaction, or

anaphylaxis, and only 2 to 3 percent of the population will

experience them.

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