Insect Sting Allergy (Ant, Wasp or Bee Stings): Treatment Make an Appointment Refer a Patient Ask a Question Reviewed by Kanao Otsu, MD, MPH (April 01, 2019) There are different treatments for bee stings, wasp stings and other insect bites based on the type of reaction you have. Local Reaction Without a History of Sting Allergy Take aspirin for pain, and use ice to reduce swelling. History of Large Local Allergic Reactions to Insect Stings Take an oral antihistamine (preferably one that is non-sedating). If your doctor suggests, take a single dose of oral steroids soon after the sting. Wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace stating that you (or your child) are allergic to bee stings, wasp stings or yellow jacket stings. Carry an emergency pack at all times. Keep the emergency pack stocked with: antihistamine (liquid or chewable tablet); an epinephrine injection device (if prescribed); a rescue inhaler if you have asthma; and an action plan card that describes the treatment steps to take and the importance of calling 911 or going to the closest medical facility once the medication is given. Take allergy shots to prevent future insect sting reactions. After reaching maintenance doses of immunotherapy, 95 percent of insect venom-treated people are able to tolerate single stings, and sting reactions that occur are generally milder. Adults who have a positive venom skin test generally are considered candidates for specific-venom allergy shots (immunotherapy). Children with skin symptoms alone have only a 10 percent risk of systemic allergic reactions and aren't considered candidates for skin testing or immunotherapy. Nonetheless, children with more severe or life-threatening reactions are candidates for venom immunotherapy. These measures are part of an Insect Sting Action Plan to prevent exposure to insects and treat an insect sting once it occurs. Insect Sting Allergy (Ant, Wasp and Bee Stings): Reduce Exposure Clinical Trials For more than 100 years, National Jewish Health has been committed to finding new treatments and cures for diseases. Search our clinical trials.