BITES AND STINGS : Lynora and any other professional... - LSN


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Lynora and any other professional bodies out there.

Hopalong and myself were speaking yesterday and today regarding insect bites etc., etc., she has been bitten by something during the night and is rightfully so watching for any change in her leg (cellulitis). I have a little problem myself and hope it does not happen, but in my wet room behind the tiles is a massive flying ants nest. I have just had a new Altro floor laid and the floor layer pointed it out to us (husband and me). I contacted our local council and they refused to investigate, and environmental health said it was not a health matter!!

This is what I would like to ask, are insects and flying ants a health risk? I know they have a nasty sting and suppose could lead to infection (cellulitis) in people like us.

Really would appreciate any views or happenings, because if a sting or bite leads to cellulitis should Environmental Health be aware of this and add it to their list of nasties?

Many, many thanks for any views on this,

26 Replies

Whereabouts are you? Flying ants don't usually nest or swarm inside buildings, and when they do swarm they usually leave in a matter of minutes - do they have access to the outside? You may need to get advice from a private pest control company if the council have denied responsibility, and get any nooks or crannies blocked off.

Any ingress to the skin should be immediately addressed - regardless of how it occurred (sting/bite/scratch) - antiseptic/tea tree oil etc etc - then observed closely. If an area of red skin appears, draw round it (with washable marker pen) so if the redness cross the line, seek medical help.

Lynora, thank you so very much for replying to me and for the information. I live in a little village, in a small valley, Buckinghamshire. They have been getting in the brickwork somewhere and this is the 3rd year we have had their pleasure. Now thanks to yourself and all at LSN, I try to be more careful.

Hopalong in reply to Lynora

I used tea tree oil first off, then a small dab of antihistamine cream before donning, and when taking off my stockings. The bite/sting is now just a small, red dot! 🙌

Evening Hopalong, That is wonderful news, have been wondering how it has been. I just thought I would ask on behalf of us as we have been nattering about it, to get views of all of us about whether Environmental health should add flying ants to their list especially if they are living in your wet room as a health hazzard.

You know, it is always the case of "shutting the door after the horse has bolted", and I think that it is about time "special" people, like us on LSN were jolly well recognised by some of the authorities. You know, this has really made me cross, a feel like a right idiot for letting them know I have Lymph and if stung/bitten in my own home by something like these ants and, especially as it belongs to the council it could be nasty. You understand me don't you Hopalong? (hope so).

Seriously though I am relieved that your night time encounter with the unknown, has not turned into that unbearable thingy.

Now listen here young lady, no kicking off the bed sheets tonight. Just lie on the top with just one thin cover.

I was going to look at the LSN at 03:20 this morning with my first cup of TEA, but as our cat Boris was meowing like mad (whilst I was having a wee) for his breakfast, yes at 03:20 and earlier sometimes, I somehow got side tracked. Then it was time for Wally Webb, he is on Radio Norfolk from 04:00-06:00, (then we get 3 counties radio), but he continues until 06:30 Norfolk area. Good listen, music choices, little guess the record, all sorts, none of this modern racket.

Well I am off to take my nightime med with a cup of TEA, and do not think you are playing football tonight.

I've been out in the garden this evening, and now have a bite on the inside of my right elbow, so the teatree oil has been out again! For some reason, insects have always found me very tasty?? Even when our dog had fleas, they bit me too!! 😬

You're right - we are special, and need to take extra care! It's up to us to educate the people who are ignorant of this awful condition?

I hope you get a decent night's sleep? I stop drinking anything after about 8pm (even tea! ☹), in an endeavour to sleep all night? I don't go to bed 'til about 12pm or 1am, but still have to visit the loo at 3, then about 5-5.30, then about 7-8. If I can stay another few hours I do, but I'm generally up by 9. However, as I don't have much 'deep' sleep, I'm permanently shattered! 😔

These things are sent to try us....? 😉 xx

Good morning young lady, I am sorry not to have been here for a few days, truth is this weather, no sleep, has made me a little bit irritable but it is a weeny bit cooler here this morning. Another one, dear Hopalong I hope that tea tree oil is working on it?, My toes, ankles and feet feel like the skin around them, especially the ankles are in a vice and are being tightened up. I can not bear to wear any shoes on my feet in this hot weather.

I have to take my tablets at around 9pm so have quite a big cold drink when I take them as there are quite a few, then I am off to the bathroom then it is bedtime. Even though I cut down on drinking I am up another 2-3 times a night, and on the 3rd time I will stay up which puss loves as he gets a drop of milk and a cuddle. Do you know though this year I have never known as many fleas, puss (Boris is flea treated every 28 days) and we have those lamp flea catchers. Even steam cleaned Saturday morning as well, carpets, settee etc., but had to put one outside coz it was so bad. This flippin dry weather has got some answering to do, only thing it is good for is drying the washing.

I am normally up at 03:30-04:00 as I can not get any rest much at night in bed, so I sit in a chair in the kitchen listening to the radio and have a cup or two of YORKSHIRE TEA. Funny though when sitting up in a chair I do not want to wee half as much when I am lying down.

Now just you look after that arm Hopalong as I do not want to hear that you have got cellulitis in it o.k??

Off to the bathroom now then a sandwich for lunch and a cup of tea, what an exciting life I lead.......................xxxxxxxxx

I cannot believe you've just sent this! You must be reading my mind??

Our dog went to the groomers last Thursday, after having been flea-treated the previous week (I have to allow a week before he's bathed). I was bitten on Friday night/Saturday morning...? The teatree and antihistamine cream worked well from Saturday into Sunday, but since then, I've had at least 10 bites - many on my legs and torso!!! I've washed the dog's bedding, and sprayed everything including the floor around his bed and the skirting boards (we have wooden floors in all but the spare bedroom)! The dog now has a flea collar AS WELL! Every year is the same - insects have always loved me!!! 😝

I now just have to wait and see how it goes. and treat the bites I have? Only one is a real concern at present, as it seems to be weeping a lot of Lymph, and is covered by quite a thick 'crust'? The rest just make me want to scratch myself to pieces... I'm still using the teatree and cream. I'm tempted to take an antihistamine tablet, as they're supposed to help, but I'm on so many other meds that I'm afraid to risk it?

I refuse to stay up at night when I need to visit the loo! Even the promise of tea won't keep me from my bed! 😉 After having gone to bed at 12.30-1.00 last night, I was up at 2.20, then 5.30 (a whole 3 hours there!) and then at 7.30. Dandy (our dog) wanted to go out, so I left the back door open for him and went back to bed! My Dearly Intended got up about 8, but I stayed 'til 9.45. Like you, I don't need to go half as much if I'm lying down, so I often fall asleep, sitting at the desk with this laptop! I think lying down makes it easy for the Lymph to flow to the bladder, whereas being upright, it stays in our legs???

We just had some soup with a roll for lunch, and I've just realised my tea has gone cold!!! That's sacrilege!!! 😂😂

Bless you Hopalong, we love our animals so much, one of our carpets got wanged out of the door Saturday the "frame of mind one was in" must of been the heat.

Blimey those flea bites, promise me you will not scratch! because you know it will only "lead" to one thing. Wear gloves so you do not scratch. Have you given him some flea treatment as well, like Frontline? or does the bath and collar do the trick. Never ever seen anything like it as I have this year, and have had either dogs or cats all my life. Damn weather.

Sometimes I tune in to others not everyone but some.

I am concerned about your bites though as I know how much they itch, and now knowing what cell can do, think it would be a good idea to get Lynora's opinion about the antihist., I can't see that it would do any harm but if they are weeping and in this flippin weather too!!

Now young lady keep on checking in here, we will get a second opinion, I am off to take my T-time tablets. Will be back myself to make sure that you are alright,

Now don't you go scratching if you see Dandy doing it resist. Hold a cup preferably with Yorkshire Tea, I will be watching xxxx

No scratching at all - I'm very 'self-controlled' - though sometimes I do apply the cream a little vigorously....? 😉

Dandy had flea treatment from the Vet a week before he went to the groomer's. He couldn't be bathed for a week, to allow the treatment to work. But he's now wearing a flea-collar as well! It may seem like 'belt and braces', but at least the fleas won't live on him - although they'll still hitch a ride? They will however, feed on me before they die (they can't live on human blood, but will still try it)!! 👹

I think I need to consult Lynora about the antihistamine tablets, but in the meantime I need take my afternoon meds too, so I have to put the kettle on... ☕ 👍 xx

I didn't no you could get flying ants.

Hello Bev, They start off as flying ants then when they reach a certain age their wings fall off, they then find another place to make a nest and start the whole process again. There is a queen ant and I will leave the rest to you...........xxxx

Chrissie2 in reply to Bev-1966

Apparently it was National Flying Ant Day yesterday!! If you were watching Wimbledon yesterday, they were flying around everywhere. I wasn't aware of them until a few years ago when we sitting having a BBQ and, all of a sudden, they started flying up out of the lawn. It was horrible - we had to go inside xx

Combine one part liquid soap with two parts water in a spray bottle and add several drops of peppermint essential oil and mix well to combine and spray on any you see or spray loads on the nest if you can get at it and it will suffocate the little buggars lol x

Hopalong in reply to Bev-1966

Someone's been looking on Google? 😊 xx

Good idea Bev, but will have to get him indoors to hack the tiles off. I could always wait for them and then let em have it..............xxxx

Is there not a hole where they come out of x

Hello Bev-1966, The little blighters are right under the tiles in the wet room and the anti slip flooring goes right up to where the tiles finish. There is a piece of sealant all around the flooring and of course is water tight. The ants nest is right behind my chair where I shower, and they some how just drop out from the bottom row. They get very very angry when disturbed too as the floor layer found out.

Thank you for your suggestions though, try anything if I could get it in.

Take care Bev-xxxxxxxxxxx

Or you could get some gap filler the squirty foam and fill the holes up with them in it x

Ditto Lenora's advice, put tea trees oil on any bite, sting, abrasion, etc. Draw with a biro pen along the edge of the pink/red area. If infection is present it will spread - if it goes outside of the pen circle then call GP for urgent appointment saying you suspect Cellulitis.

A good friend has been a driver for 25 years for NHS out of hours GPs making house calls. He's had long chats with many GPs over the years while in the car together He said GPs take Cellulitis very seriously in any person, even without LE.

So always say you think you have Cellulitis when calling for an urgent appointment even if you don't know for sure yet. That should get you in their diary more quickly!

Lynora in reply to CCT67

Please don't use a Biro (ball point) pen on skin - a felt tip is less likely to damage the skin.

My last response was supposed to be to Beg about National f. ant day. However I hope you get your problem sorted and for future years. Theoretically, your problem this year should now be home or will be soon.

Regarding stings- I had a bee/wasp sting last year on my lymphoedema arm and panicked. I ran inside and treated with bi-carb soda, put Revlon on it and then a savlon plaster. Fortunately I didn't get cellulitis . I am saying if you treat it quickly you will not get cellulitis but it helps. It certainly is a possibity. Environmental health do not even come out to bee's nests. You have to get in a private company xx

Fascinating I've never heard of flying ants x

Hi Lynne-byn, honestly? Have you never ever seen them? They are orrible and jolly well sting if they get the chance. I could catch a few in a pot as they crawl across my wet room floor and send you some (they would be in ant land though and no more flying). Seriously though they crawl out of the nest (babies at this stage), look for somewhere to get out if inside, or if outdoors (where they should be), collect together, get their wings dry (hot weather brings them out), then fly off in a swarm to who knows where next, then find a suitable place for a nest, wings drop off then they become your normal ant and the process starts again.

Do not get stung by one though Lynne it itches like mad and can become infected..........xxxxx

Hi sorry, this is a bit late, hope the 'flying ants' have flown off by now, you could get ant powder and 'puff' it ALL round where they come from, and leave the powder there for as long as you can, if it gets caked up with the wet leave it, or if you could cover it with a sheet of cling film or some other water proof, the ants don't let the smell of it, or being smothered with it of course, and if you can get outside puff the powder, everywhere on the wall,of course the flight if over for this year, but if you do it for a while this year, and keep a check on date next year you should be able to bock them then, in time the ants are either killed or moved else where, I had them coming in the corner of my front room try to walk right through to the back patio doors, they didnt get there but found there way up the hoover, I hope your leg has healed now, I think I,m quite lucky with mine, they are heavy and ache so much, but thankfully they don't seem to be as bad as a lot of you girls have, take care

Good evening sheshere, you said you were late, no probs., I am later than you and I am very sorry. I would like to thank you for replying about the ants. You will never guess but they are still here . They are living inside the cavity wall itself (where they squirt the foam to keep it insulated). Found 1 by the hand soap yesterday. He went down the drain p.d.q.

Guess will have to wait for the council.

Thank you again for your reply and have a wonderful holiday

Take care, .............xxxxx


I have mild Lymphodema in the right leg.

I have a question which I would be most grateful if you could answer.

I just wondered if I was to get a cut, bite or burn etc... what would you use to prevent bacteria from entering the wound? Would you use a triple antibiotic ointment? Or something else? If so which ointment?

I am going away to Spain on Sunday, in which I normally get insect bites, so just incase I would like to take something with me to apply.

I have been bitten and had cuts before and been fine.

It's just good to know.

I will be using insect spray.

Also can you ask your doctor if he can prescribe antibiotics incase needed but I've never had cellulitus before.



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