Bug Bites & Stings

Bug bites and stings generally result in annoying but minor reactions. However, some bites and stings can cause severe reactions or transmit disease. Avoid bites and stings by wearing protective clothing outdoors and using insect repellents.

Minor bites and stings that cause swelling, itching, and redness can usually be treated with cool compresses, application of ice, and over-the-counter treatments like cortisone cream, calamine lotion, or Benadryl.

If the bite or sting does not look better within two days or you are worried about how it looks, our healthcare providers are happy to check it for you. We can recommend additional treatment options.

Bites and stings that result in the following symptoms require emergency treatment:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Swelling of the lips, tongue, or throat
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Nausea, cramps, or vomiting
  • Stings in young children

People with severe allergies may need to carry an epinephrine autoinjector (Epi-Pen). If you think this may be right for you, our providers can help determine the necessity and ensure you have a prescription to obtain one.

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