Jellyfish: do they sting?


At present the shores of the south-east coast are swarming with jellyfish of many varieties which is causing concern for those who want to have a swim. Many people are asking is it safe, and will the jellyfish sting?

The answer is ‘yes’ they do sting but are relatively harmless and only give a minor sting very similar to that of nettles, and for most people it will settle down and go away quite quickly. However, others have found the stings more painful, leaving a red mark and have large swellings. If you are concerned about the severity of the sting call 999 for help.

Helpful advice if you are stung

Advice from the NHS is:

  • Surprisingly, shaving cream applied to the area which is sore will help take away the toxins. Just leave it on the surface of the skin.
  • Wash the area with warm water
  • Some people have found ibuprofen helps with the swelling and others have use anti-histamines.
  • Do not  touch them with your bare hands.

Some facts about jellyfish

  • They are about 90% water
  • They don’t have bones or blood
  • They don’t have a central nervous system
  • There is evidence that water pollution and the warm weather are causing the populations of jellyfish to grow.

Image Credits: Kt Bruce , Martin Bruce , Shawn Downey , Kt bruce .

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