health tips

It’s summer, protect yourself from Jellyfish Stings!

July 15, 2016

Jellyfish stings are relatively common problems for people swimming in seawaters. The long tentacles from the jellyfish body can inject you with venom or stingers.

Most jellyfish stings are mild and don't require treatment, or you can treat them yourself. However, if you experience severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing or chest pain, seek immediate medical assistance.

Common signs and symptoms of jellyfish stings include:

  • Burning, pricking pain that radiates up a leg or an arm
  • Reddish, brownish or purplish track on skin (as if a tentacles ‘print’)
  • Itching
  • Swelling
  • Tingling and numbness

Most stings can be treated with these simple remedies:

  • Remove stingers. Remove any pieces of jellyfish tentacle in your skin by rinsing with seawater (not fresh water).
  • Rinse with vinegar. Rinse the affected area with vinegar. This has been shown to deactivate additional stingers.
  • Apply heat packs.  It will reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Take a pain reliever and apply lotions. This will help relieve itching and discomfort.
  • Urinating on the sting is unlikely to help.
     

Resources:

Mayo clinic (www.mayoclinic.org)

NHS (www.nhs.uk)