Here's an old-time remedy that really works wonders: I was stung by yellow jackets this past summer. The pain and swelling were relieved almost immediately by using activated charcoal. Make a paste with charcoal and water (charcoal capsules are sold in natural food stores). Apply paste to sting and cover with a cloth until the swelling subsides. Renew the poultice as needed during the day. It's also beneficial to take two to four charcoal capsules internally at the same time. This remedy works for spider bites as well as digestive discomforts. Charcoal should be in everyone's first aid kit.