Treating scorpion stings
Scorpion stings causes pain but are mostly harmless. Only the bark scorpion has venom strong enough to cause severe symptoms. It is the most poisonous and capable of causing severe reactions especially among infants, children and the elderly.
Scorpions belong to the arachnida class and related to spiders, ticks and mites. They have 8 legs, 2 pincers with an elongated body. The tail has segments of varying length ranging from 9-20 cm. The last segment of the tail contains the stinger which is called as telson.
Symptoms of scorpion stings
- Involuntary urination or excretion
- Vomiting, drooling, sweating or foaming at the mouth
- Accelerated or irregular heart beat
- Severe swelling from an allergic reaction
- Numbness and tingling sensation around the sting site
- Difficulty breathing, speaking, swallowing and blurred vision
- Thrashing or twitching muscles
- Involuntary neck, head or eye movements and difficulty walking
- Restlessness and inconsolable crying among babies or colic which last for hours.
- Remove any clothing around the affected area and wash gently with soap and water to remove any residue of the venom around the area and keep the wound clean to lessen the risk for infection.
- Keep the affected area below the level of the heart to prevent the spread of venom throughout the system. Minimize movement of the body to prevent fast heart rate that can cause spreading of the venom. Keep the affected person calm since anxiety and excitement can trigger a fast heart beat that increases the absorption of the venom in the body.
- Apply a cold compress or ice pack on the affected area. The cold temperature lessens the spread of the venom as well as reduce pain and swelling. Wrap an ice pack with a towel and apply on the area for at least 10-15 minutes at a time on the first 2 hours after the injury. If there is a problem with the circulation, apply an ice pack on the area for at least 5 minutes at a time to prevent damage.
- Take the prescribed pain medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen and acetaminophen to lessen the pain and discomfort. If pain is severe, seek medical help immediately.
- Apply a small amount of ammonia on the sting site to relieve the swelling and pain. Soak the affected area inside a solution of ammonia for at least 10 minutes to lessen the inflammation. Ammonia is a gas that dissolves in water that can be used as a household cleaner which is effective in eliminating dirt and stains.
- Make a paste by mixing baking soda with a few drops of water until it becomes a paste. Apply this paste on the sting site to lessen the tingling sensations and inflammation as well as lessen the spread of venom to other parts of the body.
- Apply cortisone cream on the affected area to minimize the inflammation and pain.