How To Treat a Bee Sting Naturally

Updated on August 5, 2016
Photo credit: Jusben on MorgueFile
Photo credit: Jusben on MorgueFile

When a bumblebee or a honeybee stings you, it leaves its stinger and sac of venom in your skin.

In most cases, the sting creates slight pain, swelling and irritation.

For most people it will be more of a nuisance than cause for concern.

However, if you have not been stung before look for signs of an allergic reaction.

Symptoms of an allergic reaction are:

  • Swollen eye lids
  • Swollen hands
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Hive-like rash

If you have any of these symptoms proceed to the emergency room or your doctor's office immediately. Bee stings can be fatal in people who are allergic to the bee's venom.

What to do if someone is stung:

  1. Have someone stay with the person who was stung to make sure they don't have an allergic reaction.
  2. Wash the area with soap and water.
  3. Remove the stinger by scraping it with a credit card or other similar object. It is important to never use tweezers or squeeze the stinger, as more venom will be released and can injury the muscle.
  4. Apply ice to reduce the swelling.
  5. If the person has an allergic reaction take them to the hospital to get an epinephrine injection.

Natural Remedies To Draw Out Bee Venom

Any of the following natural remedies can be used to reduce the swelling and pain from the bee sting.

  • Apple Cider Vinegar ~ Rub apple cider vinegar on the bee sting to stop the pain.
  • Aspirin ~ Crush up an aspirin and mix with water to form a paste. Apply to the bee sting to reduce the swelling.
  • Baking Soda ~ Mix with water, and generously apply the paste to the sting to draw out the venom.
  • Baking Soda & Vinegar ~ Apply a paste of baking soda and water to the bee sting, then pour vinegar over the baking soda until it has bubbled and gone to remove the venom and the stinger.
  • Basil ~ Crush fresh basil leaves and rub into the bee sting to relieve pain.
  • Honey ~ Using pure raw honey, dab a bit on the sting and cover with a band-aid. The honey's enzymes will neutralize the venom and will relieve the pain in 5 minutes.
  • Ice Pack ~ The cold ice will minimize swelling and prevents the venom from spreading to other areas of the body.
  • Lavender Oil ~ Apply 1 drop of lavender essential oil to the bee sting to relieve swelling and pain.
  • Meat Tenderizer ~ Make a paste with meat tenderizer and water. Hold paste on the bee sting site for 5 minutes to neutralize the venom.
  • Mud ~ Hold mud on the bee sting to remove the stinger and reduce the swelling.
  • Onion ~ Keep an onion slice on the bee sting for about 1 hour.
  • Papaya ~ Wrap a slice of fresh papaya on the bee sting for an hour.
  • Parsley ~ Crush fresh parsley and rub into the bee sting. Parsley will relieve the pain and neutralize the venom.

Plantains have fan shaped leaves with flower spikes in the center

Photo credit: Jusben on MorgueFile
Photo credit: Jusben on MorgueFile
  • Plantain leaves ~ Collect a number of leaves and stack them on top of each other, rip the leaves in half and form one stack. Rub the torn end of the leaves on the sting to draw out the venom and reduce the swelling. Takes five minutes and completely cures the bee sting. It is best to use young plantain leaves.
  • St. John's Wort ~ Using St. John's Wort oil and bentonite clay make a paste and apply to the bee sting site. The clay will draw out the venom, and the St John's wort oil will relieve swelling.
  • Tea bag ~ Moisten a tea bag with water, then put it on the affected area to draw out the bee venom.
  • Toothpaste ~ Apply some toothpaste (not gel) on the bee sting to relieve the pain.

Treating Bee Stings with Diet

Recommended Food:

Eating foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids will promote skin healing and reduce inflammation. Try foods such as:

  • Fish (salmon, cod, mackerel)
  • Ground flaxseeds
  • Avocados
  • Wheat Germ

Eating foods high in Vitamins A and C will speed your skin's recovery from the inflammation. Try to eat green, orange and yellow vegetables at each meal.

Foods to Avoid:

Sugar worsens the inflammatory response, so stay away from refined sugar products including cookies, cakes, sweet baked goods and sodas. Eat fruit in moderation.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • profile image


      5 years ago

      When one of my cousins or myself would get stung, my grandpa put tabbaco from his cigarette on the sting after getting out the stinger and the pain was gone instantly. I still use this on my nieces and nefews.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      OMG I had a bee sting me in my ear tonight while putting my pool cover on. I was stomping madly through my lawn in pain when I saw a plantain plant( I normally run for mud) I grabbed a leaf and chewed it up and put in on the stung part if my ear(my hubby thought I had gone insane) almost instant relief. When the pain stopped I took the leaf off only to have the pain come back( not as bad as the initial sting) so here I sit typing this with a chewed up plantain leaf in my ear- last week my son suffered a nasty scrape on his knee skate boarding, I bruised a plantain leaf to stop the bleeding, the next day his wound was pink with little scan! Love this little plant enough to try to transplant it into a pot for winter!!!!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      These are excellent tips

      thank you very much.

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Some I knew others I discovered thanks


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)