First Aid Information

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Stings From the sea

Treatment for stings from the sea will vary depending on what has stung you and, in some cases, how severe your reaction is.

You can treat some stings from the sea yourself using first aid, however, if the symptoms are more serious – such as severe pain, swelling or difficulty breathing – dial 999/112 and request an ambulance immediately.


stings from the sea – Weever

Weever fish

If you’re stung by a weever fish, it’s important to get first aid and medical attention immediately.

To control the pain, the affected area should be immersed in hot water (as hot as can be tolerated)  until pain resides.  However, be careful not to burn your skin. This can be repeated if necessary.

You can use simple painkillers such as paracetamol and ibuprofen to relieve any remaining pain.

Any large spines should be carefully removed from the wound using tweezers (avoid touching the spines with your bare hands). Clean the wound using soap and water and then rinse it with fresh water. Do not cover the wound.

Spines embedded in or near joints or tendons should be assessed in A&E. X-rays may be required and the spines may need to be surgically removed.

If the casualty start to show signs of a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) dial 999/112 straight away they will need to be treated in hospital immediately.


If there is itching, hydrocortisone cream can be applied up to two to three times a day. However, this should be stopped immediately if there are any signs of infection, such as severe inflammation and redness.

Pain and inflammation can also be treated with painkillers, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen.

If an infection develops, a course of antibiotics may be prescribed. They should be taken for a minimum of five days after the signs of infection have disappeared.

Sea urchins

Stings From the Sea - Urchin

Stings From the Sea – Urchin

Sea urchin puncture wounds and stings are treated in a similar way to weever fish stings. If there are signs that you or someone you’re with has had a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis), dial 999 to request an ambulance.

Immerse the affected area in hot water (as hot as can be tolerated) until pain eases. Again, be careful not to burn your skin.

Any large spines should be carefully removed from the wound using tweezers. The small venomous organs (pedicellariae) can be removed by applying a small amount of shaving cream to the affected area and using a razor blade to gently scrape them out.

Scrub the wound using soap and water and then rinse it with fresh water. Do not close the wound with tape.


Pain and swelling can be treated with painkillers, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen.

If the skin is red and badly inflamed, a topical antibiotic cream or ointment should be applied three times a day.




Stings From the Sea – Jellyfish

Most jellyfish stings are mild and don’t require treatment, or you can treat them yourself.

However, dial 999 if there are severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing, chest pain, or if a large or sensitive area of the body such as the face or genitals has been stung.

Someone stung by a jellyfish should be treated out of the water. They should stay as still as possible while being treated because movement increases the risk of toxins being released into the body.

Any remaining tentacles should be removed using tweezers or a clean stick (wear gloves if they’re available). Applying an ice pack to the affected area will help reduce pain and inflammation.

Vinegar is no longer recommended for treating jellyfish stings because it may make things worse by activating unfired stinging cells. The use of other substances, such as alcohol and baking soda, should also be avoided.

Ignore any advice you may have heard about urinating on the sting. It’s unlikely to help and may make the situation worse.

Applying shaving cream to the affected area will help prevent the spread of toxins. Use a razor blade, credit card or shell to remove any nematocysts (small poisonous sacs) that are stuck to the skin.


After a jellyfish sting, any pain and swelling can be treated with painkillers, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen.

I hope this blog Stings from the Sea has been useful

Published on July 9th, 2014 and is filed under Blog.

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