Home   News   Article

NHS 24 gives advice on how to treat bites and stings as part of their summer health campaign ‘Hello Summer’

By Iona M.J. MacDonald

Register for free to read more of the latest local news. It's easy and will only take a moment.

Click here to sign up to our free newsletters!

NHS 24 offers advice on how to treat bites and stings, while enjoying the outdoors this summer.

Dr Laura Ryan, a GP and NHS 24’s Medical Director said:"We’ve had great weather this summer which means we’ve been able to enjoy the outdoors without having to remember an umbrella! But that does mean we’re more at risk of a being bitten or stung by an insect so it’s handy to know how to treat them.

"Insect bites and stings are common and usually only cause minor irritation such as minor pain, itching or swelling. These normally resolve themselves, and your local pharmacist will be happy to provide advice on antihistamines or creams which can help with the symptoms.

"Rarely, some stings can trigger a serious allergic reaction. If you feel it is an emergency, then dial 999."

In the UK, insects that bite include midges, mosquitoes, fleas, bedbugs and, although not strictly insects, spiders, mites, and ticks, which are arachnids. Insects that sting include bees, wasps, and hornets.

Dr Laura Ryan continued:"As Lyme disease is on the rise in Scotland, we also wish to draw particular attention to tick bites. Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread to humans by infected ticks. It is usually mild but can be serious if not treated.

"It is important to be vigilant for ticks when you have been out walking in areas such as woods or fields. If you find you have a tick bite remove it safely by using a tick removal tool, such as a tick twister or tick card. If these aren't available, you can use a pair of fine-toothed tweezers. Afterwards, wash your skin with soap and apply antiseptic cream around the bite.

"There is no need to consult your GP if you have been bitten and have no symptoms. However, if a rash or any flu-like symptoms appear it is important to take pictures of the site and contact your GP for an appointment straight away.

"I really encourage the public to visit NHS inform for advice on what to if you are bitten or stung by an insect. I hope by providing this info a lot more people will have a happy and healthy summer."

Do you want to respond to this article? If so, click here to submit your thoughts and they may be published in print.

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies - Learn More