Avoid wearing bright colors or floral prints, which can attract bees.
Don't wear loose clothing, which can trap stinging insects between the cloth and your skin.
When driving, keep your windows rolled up.
Be careful when mowing the lawn or trimming vegetation, activities that might disturb a beehive or wasp nest.
Have hives and nests near your home removed by a professional.
If a few bees are flying around you, stay calm and slowly walk away. Swatting at an insect may cause it to sting.
If you are stung or many insects start to fly around, cover your mouth and nose and quickly leave the area. If you can, get into a building or closed vehicle. When a bee stings, it releases a chemical that attracts other bees.
If you've experienced an allergic reaction to a bee, wasp or hornet sting, you should talk with your health care provider or an allergy specialist about prevention and treatment options. This could include being prescribed an emergency medication, such as an epinephrine auto-injector, to use if stung. In more severe cases, allergy shots may be a long-term solution for you.
Denise Dupras, M.D., Ph.D., is an Internal Medicine physician in Mayo Clinic Primary Care in Rochester and Mayo Family Clinic Kasson, Minnesota
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