Kids love insects. They like to watch them, touch them, put them in jars, and then let them loose again. It’s actually good to let kids play with insects because it teaches them about nature. Still, some insects can be dangerous. They can bite or sting, and if the children have allergic reactions to them, things can be much worse.
If parents are going to allow children to play with insects, they need to supervise them.
One mom learned the hard way that not all bugs are cute and squirmy; some can cause severe reactions.
One minute, Lauryn Jordan’s young son was playing in the yard, and the next, he was very ill. She was worried about him and took him to the doctor. When the doctors asked if the boy has been stung or bitten, she remembered that a caterpillar had bitten him.
She shared her story hoping it will help parents be more aware of the dangers of these insects.
“Parents beware! Beau got bitten/stung by a caterpillar on Friday. During the night, he was sick while he was asleep & during the day very sleepy & constantly being sick. He ended up at the hospital – lucky it was minor, but [the caterpillar] carries toxins and it could have been much worse! Who knew caterpillars could do this?”
Steve Ogden from Wildlife Insight is an expert on moths, and he explained why the boy became so ill.
Some people may not have reactions like this, but children are much more susceptible. He explained:
“Some people seem to have more sensitive skin than others, particularly children, so to be on the safe side it’s always best to avoid direct skin contact with any hairy caterpillar.”
“I didn’t know caterpillars could do this… Kids pick up bugs, I just want parents to be aware that this can happen.”
Ogden believes the caterpillar may have been the larvae of a four spotted footman.
It’s a species of moth that lives in the UK and is covered in an irritant. It can cause rashes, life-threatening asthma attacks, and severe vomiting.
They are not aggressive, but they will bite if they feel threatened. Curious children who are touching or aggravating the caterpillar can easily be bitten. Sometimes, they don’t realize it or are too young to explain the bite to their parents.
Parent notice that their children are ill and aren’t sure why.
This can make it hard for hospital staff to treat the symptoms. Still, if bitten, there are a few things parents can do for their children or even themselves.
Here’s what to do if a child is stung or bitten:
- Remove the sting or tick if it’s still in the skin.
- Wash the affected area with soap and water.
- Apply a cold compress (such as a flannel or cloth cooled with cold water) or an ice pack to any swelling for at least 10 minutes.
- Raise or elevate the affected area if possible, as this can help reduce swelling.
- Avoid scratching the area to reduce the risk of infection.
- Avoid traditional home remedies, such as vinegar and baking soda, as they’re unlikely to help.
While the sting or bite of this caterpillar can cause serious problems, reactions like this are rare.
Parents can avoid incidents like this checking their backyards for the caterpillar and teaching their children not to touch them. It’s also a good idea to keep children in a certain area of the yard to avoid interaction with unwanted insects.
Learning about nature is fun, and it’s a good idea for children to explore the natural world around them. Still, the pain and sickness associated with the reaction to these caterpillars and many other insects aren’t worth it. There are plenty of other ways to learn about bugs and creepy crawlers. Keep your kiddos safe, parents.
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⚠️ Parents beware ⚠️ Beau got bitten/stung by a caterpillar on Friday, then during the night he was sick while he was…
Source: Faith Tap