Keep calm, do not walk or run around because this will rapidly spread the poison around the body and put you at more risk of a severe reaction. Most insect bites and stings cause itching and swelling that usually clears up within several hours.1
Minor bites and stings can be treated by:
- placing a cold compress (a flannel or cloth cooled with cold water) over the affected area to reduce swelling
- do not scratch the area as it can become infected
- take painkillers, such as paracetamol if it is too painful
- take an appropriate antihistamine tablet to help reduce swelling and itching
- do not use tweezers to remove a sting as it squeezes out the venom. Scrape it out using something with a hard edge such as a credit card
See your GP if the redness and itching gets worse or doesn't clear up after a few days.
- Zirtek is not licenced for the treatment of stings.