Honey bees can sting, but usually only in defence. The severity of the reaction to
a sting is related to the amount of venom injected, and this is directly related
to the time the sting remains in the flesh. So it is important that the sting is
removed as quickly as possible. It has been demonstrated that the method of removal
is less important than the speed with which it is done. The conventional advice is
to scrape it out with a finger nail. Apply an ice pack or calamine lotion to soothe
the affected part. Antihistamine Cream can be obtained from a Chemist shop. This
will help reduce itching.
Most people show little reaction to stings apart from swelling and irritation. Rarely,
an individual may be hypersensitive and will need urgent medical attention. When
the reaction is severe, intense skin irritation is followed by difficulty in breathing
and loss of consciousness (anaphylactic shock).
If collapse follows being stung, a doctor and ambulance should be called immediately.
Similarly, stings near the eye or inside the mouth (especially in young children)
should receive immediate medical attention.
Remember bee stings are to a great extent ignored by beekeepers in their thousands
throughout the world, since they suffer no ill effects from them. They are even reputed
to be good for rheumatism!. The record for sustained stings is 2243! The victim made
a full recovery.