With the arrival of the summer months, the bite of jellyfish, which is one of the fearful dreams of people who go on vacation to relax and go to the sea, has become confusing. Jellyfish bites are common and sometimes painful situations encountered during swimming or diving in the sea. In this article, we will discuss what to do when you experience such a situation.

What to do after a jellyfish bite?

Get out of the water The first thing you should do after a jellyfish bite is to quickly get out of the water and reach the shore. Staying in the water while the bite is still going on will cause more venom to spread throughout the body.

Wash the bite site: Gently wash the bite site with seawater. Avoid using fresh water because fresh water can trigger jellyfish tentacles to release more toxins. Using seawater, gently cleansing the skin helps to remove any remaining tentacle fragments.

Remove Tentacles: Carefully remove any jellyfish tentacles that remain on the skin. Avoid touching them with your bare hands; you can use tweezers or a similar tool. If tweezers are not available, you can use a flat object such as a credit card to scrape the tentacles off your skin.

Apply Vinegar or Alcohol: Vinegar (an acidic liquid) helps reduce the effects of jellyfish venom and sterilizes it. Pour vinegar on the bite site or wipe the area with a cloth soaked in vinegar. If vinegar is not available, you can also use a liquid containing a high percentage of alcohol.

Pain Relief Applications: If there is pain and swelling at the bite site, you can apply a cold compress. Cold compresses help reduce pain and swelling. You can also use antihistamine creams or painkillers.

Get Medical Help: If the bite causes severe pain, shortness of breath, dizziness or severe allergic reactions, seek medical attention immediately. Medical attention is especially important for children and people with allergies. Otherwise, swelling of the respiratory tract can cause asphyxiation or even death.

Are Jellyfish Poisonous?

Jellyfish are sea creatures with different species around the world, and most species are known for their poisonous tentacles. However, not all jellyfish species are equally dangerous. 

Most species are harmless: Most species of jellyfish pose no serious threat to humans. Their bites are usually limited to mild pain, itching and redness.

Some Species are Dangerous: Some species of jellyfish that live in some parts of the world, especially in tropical and subtropical seas, are highly toxic. For example, the box jellyfish (Chironex fleckeri) and the Portuguese battleship (Physalia physalis) can cause severe poisoning and even death.

Effects of Venom: Jellyfish venom is released from specialized cells called nematocysts and causes pain, burning, swelling, redness and sometimes blisters when it comes into contact with the skin. In severe cases, the venom can cause muscle spasms, heart problems and breathing difficulties.