In a stinging insect allergy, the allergen is the venom from a sting.
The most serious reactions are caused by five types of insects:
- Yellow jackets: their nests are usually located underground, but sometimes found in the walls of buildings, cracks in masonry or in woodpiles.
- Honeybees: they can be found in honeycombs in trees, old tires or other partially protected sites.
- Paper wasps: live in a circular comb under eaves, behind shutters or in shrubs and woodpiles.
- Hornets and Fire ants.
Most of us develop redness and swelling at the site of an insect bite. Yet people who are allergic to stinging insect venom are at risk for a much more serious reaction, such as anaphylaxis (a life-threatening reaction)