Bee stings are a fact of life during the summer. Before you consider the little buzzing guys an enemy, keep in mind the role that they play in nature. Without their help, which is pollination, we would not have all those beautiful flowers to look at during the summer months. If people and bees could lead their respective lives separately, we would not have a problem. Unfortunately, this is almost never possible.
While adults sometimes will get stung, it is usually children that pay the price. Running through the grass during the beautiful, warm, sunny day they feel the stinging, burning sensation. To a child, the pain can seem unbearable. First and foremost try to keep them calm. While distracting them, remove the stinger from the skin. It is up to you to tell the child that the little bee sacrificed it’s life to protect itself. This may make it more traumatic for some children. A pair of tweezers usually will work the best for removing the stinger.
This next part of the natural treatment comes from my great grandmother. Take a tea bag (the flavor doesn’t really matter but peppermint may be a little more soothing) and put it over the sting site. Make sure that you have moistened the tea bag before hand. The tea bag will draw out the poison. While doing this, it will also reduce the swelling.
After this has been done for a while, replace the tea bag with ice. If an ice cube on the skin is too intense, you can put it into a cloth. Either way it will help to reduce the swelling further, and relieve the pain. Last but not least, a good old fashioned lolly pop or other type of treat will help the pain go away for the child.
Another danger of summer that most of us have experienced is the good old fashioned sunburn. You are enjoying yourself outside and don’t notice that your skin is slowly cooking under the heat of the sun. While people don’t think of it as serious, it is not uncommon for you to actually get a 2nd degree burn (if blisters form, that is a 2nd degree burn). What can you do about this?
Once again, listen to the good old advice from grandma. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Play in the shade. Stay out of the sun during the heat of the day and keep your skin covered when possible. A hat is a good idea as well as long sleeves. Sun burns are not the only dangers, skin cancer is on the rise as well.
You will probably not notice the burn while it is happening. Later that night as well the next day is when you will feel the effects. These effects will be the obvious burn, and heat coming off the skin accompanied by a tight feeling. These are all signs of sun burn. To remedy it, you need to stop the burning. Getting out of the sun is not enough. When you turn off the stove, the burner is still hot. A cool bath or shower will help and make you feel better. Cool is the key. If it is cold it may be too uncomfortable and may (according to grandma’s everywhere) lead to blisters.
After you have stopped the burning, you need to treat the injury. While you can sample the hundreds of products on the shelves of any local drug store, the primary ingredient could be growing on the kitchen window sill. That’s right, the cactus looking aloe vera plant is the active ingredient in most commercial products. You can use it naturally by just breaking a small piece. The gel that is inside the plant will soothe and help to heal the burns from the sun.
These are just a couple of home grown cures for the troubles that get in the way of our summer fun. You can combat them naturally, inexpensively, and without doing any harm to the environment.