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Spring has sprung, don’t get stung

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MACON, Ga. — Spring has sprung and as we spend more time outside, so will the insects.

These warm temperatures invite us to be outside but it also invites the bees and possible allergic reactions.

Dr. David Plaxico of Allergy & Asthma Clinic of Macon said most stings and allergic reactions come from yellow jacket bees.

“Here in this area, the biggest thing we see is with the yellow jackets here. Because they tend to be really aggressive and they nest in the ground and if people are out mowing the grass or weed eating or whatever they will stir them up and the yellow jackets will come out with a great amount of force.”

While the number of people actually suffer from severe allergic reactions,Dr. Plaxico gave WGXA some tips on how to avoid being stung.

1. Don’t wear bright colored clothing, floral prints

Dr. Plaxico advises to avoid bright colors, especially when you’re outside, because it will attract bees to you. Floral prints will confuse the bees and make them want to fly around you. And if you try to swat them away, they may become agitated that’s when they’ll sting.

2. Avoid sweet perfumes, hair products

Just like clothing, the scent will attract bees and insects. If you plan on spending time outside, it’s best to skip out on this.

3. Be aware of your surroundings.

“If you're out doing yard work just make sure you're not working around the nest or the hives or the porches where the wasps will make their nest,” advises Dr. Plaxico. He said make sure you explain this to children as well.

4. If stung, always have any necessary medications

Dr. Plaxico says less than 1% have a severe reaction to insects. There are 40-50 people who died each year because of insect sting anaphylaxis. But he says to check family medical history to see if you may have an allergic reaction. If you know your family’s history, make sure to have necessary medications on hand such as an epinephrine auto-injector.

If you don’t know your family history, you can always get a allergy test done. This specifically allergy test is a skin test and uses a diluted amount of venom to test on the skin. This will give you a better understanding if you’re allergic or reactions to it.

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