EMA Care Blog

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Jellyfish Season in Israel

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The warm Mediterranean Sea on Israel’s coast may be fun to swim in, but jellyfish season is upon us! 

Every summer, Israeli beaches suffer from jellyfish for a number of weeks.  Whether in the water or washed up ashore, jellyfish pose a (potentially life threatening) hazard.  EMA Care gives you tips on what to do if you get stung by a floating cell or jellyfish tentacle.

Fact: Jellyfish is one of the most intimidating creatures of the sea. In Hebrew the word for jellyfish is “medusa”. In classic Greek mythology Medusa is a monster (gorgon) in the form of a woman with snakes for hair... which kind of looks like a jellyfish, right?  While not among the largest species, Israeli jellyfish can be sizable.  The sting from a jellyfish comes from toxins on its tentacles.


If you do get stung by a jellyfish, there will be a distinct red mark and pain.  Symptoms vary from person to person and may include:

    1. Mild: Burning sensation on skin (usually a sign that you have been stung by tiny floating cells)
    2. Moderate: A clearly marked area that is swollen, red, itchy and painful
    3. Severe: nausea, headaches, dizziness, cramps, , weakness, neck swelling, purple/blue discoloration of the sting site, and difficulty breathing

If you suspect that you have been stung by a jellyfish, you must seek First Aid help immediately at the lifeguard or first aid station!! The lifeguard will have a vinegar to spray on the sting.  The sooner the rash is treated with vinegar the less painful it will be.  If vinegar is unavailable - seawater can be used to cleanse the area. For all life threatening reactions, call an ambulance at 101 from any phone.  THEN spray with vinegar.


Do NOT:

    1. Use freshwater for cleansing the sting, this will exacerbate the toxins and make it worse
    2. Rub the area unless you are wearing gloves
    3. Touch jellyfish tentacles even when lying dead in the sand

The best defense against the jellyfish sting is to stay out of the water when you see jellyfish in the sand and/or the water.

This site (in Hebrew) provides valuable information on jellyfish sightings in Israel.  It updates which beach is currently being invaded by these creatures.

We at EMA Care wish you a sting-free summer in Israel.

EMA Care provides medical concierge, case management, and patient advocacy services to tourists, students and residents of Israel. Contact us today to schedule your free consultation. 

http://healthcareisrael.com  

Emergency Room Visits in Israel
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