They got me on the lower back, left arm and left chest. Funny thing is, I didn't realize I was stung. While driving home, my back really started to itch. I figured I just scraped it on my board or paddle when I fell. Sunday night, I'm a little worried because I still don't know what's wrong: my skin hurts, my muscles hurt and I'm having stomach cramps. Monday night, I realized I had been victimized by a gang of gelatinous fauna.
I spent some time last night reading about how to treat the stings. Here are the steps for treating a jellyfish sting:
- Get out of the water (goes without saying).
- Flush the area with sea water (fresh water can activate the nematocysts).
- Scrape off tentacles if they are attached to the skin (they can continue to sting even after the tentacle tears away from the jellyfish) with a stick, shell or anything other than a bare hand.
- At any sign of anaphylaxis, call 911.
- Apply vinegar to the wound (not everyone agrees that this is effective).
- Some people recommend applying shaving cream to the area and removing it with a credit card to scrape off the barbs.
- Ibuprofen can help reduce pain and swelling. Anti-itch ointment to the wound provides some relief.
- If stung repeatedly on the body, on the eyes, or if having a reaction, seek medical care.
Here's a picture of my lower back Monday night.
EDIT: A sincere apology to all jellyfish. Turns out, it was Shingles! Awful stuff. Talk to your doctor about the getting shot so you don't have to suffer through this.