Jellyfish First Aid
Jellyfish stings are a common occurrence in Australia, particularly during the summer months. Although most jellyfish stings are not life-threatening, they can be extremely painful and cause severe discomfort. This article will discuss some basic first aid techniques for treating jellyfish stings in Australia.
To treat a jellyfish sting, quickly remove any tentacles stuck to the skin to prevent further venom release. Use tweezers or a similar tool, as using fingers can release more venom.
TROPICAL PRIORITY – TO PRESERVE LIFE
- Remove from water, restrain if necessary Resuscitate if required
- VINEGAR FOR 30 SECONDS Liberally douse the stung area with vinegar
- Pick off any remaining tentacles (not harmful to first aider). If no vinegar: Pick off the tentacles, rinse with seawater.
- DO NOT APPLY FRESH WATER (this may cause more stinging)
- APPLY COLD PACK SEEK MEDICAL ASSISTANCE.
NON-TROPICAL PRIORITY – TO RELIEVE PAIN
- Do not use vinegar or rub the sting area, rest, reassure and monitor.
- PICK OFF TENTACLES RINSE WITH SEAWATER PLACE IN HOT WATER FOR 20 MINUTES
- RINSE WITH SEAWATER PLACE IN HOT WATER FOR 20 MINUTES.
- If pain is not relieved by heat or if hot water is not available, use a cold pack.
If the individual experiences severe symptoms such as difficulty breathing, swollen tongue or difficulty swallowing, seek medical attention immediately.
It is important to note that some species of jellyfish found in Australia, such as the box jellyfish and Irukandji jellyfish, have venom that can be extremely dangerous and even deadly. If a person is stung by one of these jellyfish, they should seek medical attention immediately.
To prevent jellyfish stings, always swim in areas patrolled by lifeguards and pay attention to local warning signs. Wearing a full-body wetsuit or a stinger suit can also help protect against jellyfish stings.
In conclusion, jellyfish stings are common in Australia, and while most stings are not life-threatening, they can cause severe discomfort. By following these simple first aid techniques and seeking medical attention if necessary, you can effectively treat jellyfish stings and reduce the risk of complications.
Book online with Brisbane First Aid to book your your first aid course and download our free chart for jellyfish first aid.