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This is my third year beekeeping. Of course I have been stung a couple of times each year. Mostly no big deal, except for once last year when I got stung on the corner of my eye, which caused a frightful swelling. This year I was stung on the left temple on April 23rd, and a few days of Benadryl knocked it down without any worries. This past Tuesday (07/02) I was stung on the right forearm and removed the stinger, applied the goo (probably useless snake oil) and started in on the Benadryl. Not only did my right arm swell up to cartoon proportions, the 10-week old sting on my left temple started to itch like mad. Is it possible that some stings are just way worse than others? I am concerned I may be one of those who grows more sensitive as the stings accumulate. Epi-pens are cost prohibitive in my situation. As a beekeeper, I had come to accept the fact that occasional stings are part of the hobby, but this latest turn of events has me wondering. I would greatly appreciate any thoughts or input. Thank you.
 

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Not a doctor, but my advice is to go see one. Get an epipen. I know it costs $$, but you never know what may happen, to you or someone around you.

First time I got stung, it didn’t affect me at all. Exactly 1 week later, it itched like crazy for several days. For the next year or so, every time I was stung, the itching was immediate and it lasted several days. After a while and several hundred stings later stings later, the itching decreased when I was stung. My VA doc ordered an allergy test and found I was slightly allergic to bees. On a scale of 1 to 6, 6 being the most allergic, I was a 2 for bees. Never had a systemic reaction, but I do have an epipen on hand if the worst happens. I feel like you can’t be too careful.

I’ve learned that if I get the stinger out ASAP, the sting doesn’t affect me too much. If stung around the face, and the stinger stays in a while, I can get very mild local swelling, but nothing bad.
 

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might want to get a good full bee suit. Had mine on yesterday in 90 degree heat. head to toe. part of the gig imo
 

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That the old sting site on your temple reacted after the latest sting could indicate your body is building a "memory", or in better language, an immune response that could lead to anaphylaxis.

Would definately consult a Dr, not a general practitioner who will doubtless just recommend you carry an epipen, but if you can go to a proper immunologist who can run tests and find out exactly what is going on, and wether this is something you will overcome naturally, or wether it will worsen every time.

Some words of comfort, i am a retired commercial beekeeper and have had thousands of stings and no longer react at all. But when I first started i got major swelling just from one sting, and have also had experiences like yours where a different sting site would react after a sting in another place. However luckily for me, my body reacted right and symptoms gradually got less with more stings. So you may get over it naturally, but in my view, would pay to have some professional advise.
 

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This is my third year beekeeping. Of course I have been stung a couple of times each year. Mostly no big deal, except for once last year when I got stung on the corner of my eye, which caused a frightful swelling. This year I was stung on the left temple on April 23rd, and a few days of Benadryl knocked it down without any worries. This past Tuesday (07/02) I was stung on the right forearm and removed the stinger, applied the goo (probably useless snake oil) and started in on the Benadryl. Not only did my right arm swell up to cartoon proportions, the 10-week old sting on my left temple started to itch like mad. Is it possible that some stings are just way worse than others? I am concerned I may be one of those who grows more sensitive as the stings accumulate. Epi-pens are cost prohibitive in my situation. As a beekeeper, I had come to accept the fact that occasional stings are part of the hobby, but this latest turn of events has me wondering. I would greatly appreciate any thoughts or input. Thank you.
Always check for a coupon. https://www.activatethecard.com/epipen/?_ga=2.234399966.192126318.1562374378-627686116.1562374378
Hope it helps Also when you follow up with dr ask when and how to use it.
 

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Don't ask the doc for an EpiPen. Ask for a generic epinephrin injector. Unlike with other drugs, your pharmacist can't give you the generic if your prescription is for an EpiPen. The official justification for this restriction is that the patient may not know how to properly use a different brand of device. But basically they all work the same -- you jab yourself with the pokey end.

I have about average reactions to stings and I'm hoping it will get better with time. I only get a few a year so probably not. Oh well.
 

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I had been stung with nothing more than a mosquito bite reaction, then in my 3rd or 4th year I got stung on the head, didn't remove the stinger and got itchy and had hives on my neck, back, armpits, behind my knees.
Wife made me go to the ER and they gave me a ****tail of Benadryl, Pred, probably some other stuff. I slept in the ER for 4 hours.

That was 4 or so years ago. I keep Epi-Pens, Benadryl and Pepcid with me at all times: I've been stung 4 or 5 times since without any reaction but I've always taken the stinger our right away and taken the Benadryl and Pepcid immediately.
 
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