Bee stings are an occupational hazard for beekeepers but most people sometime will experience the pain of a bee sting at some time in their life. As a child, I grew up in an urban area with a neighbour who had hives. Standing on a bee was a common occurrence. I do not have happy memories of bees, nor does my mother who had to put up with bee defecation on the washing! You could also say bees were an occupational hazard for the Oamaru man who, trying to escape arrest, jumped a fence only to land on a beehive! The police were soon the least of his worries as he was repeatedly stung – a new take on a “police sting”.
In most cases a bee sting is unpleasant and there are many opinions on the best way to remove and treat the bee sting, but for some it can cause an anaphylactic reaction. These people should seek prompt medical help. Self administered injections are available for those known to have serious reactions to bee stings. Bee venom is actually used medically to treat rheumatoid arthritis, nerve pain, multiple sclerosis and other conditions, but don’t try to administer it yourself.