It has been known that the jellyfish’s tentacles could injure a person or, worst case scenario, can even cause a person’s death, although it varies from what type of jellyfish it is. The tentacles of a jellyfish have a numerous number of nematocysts (stinging cells). These cells protect the jellyfish from predators, while unfortunately, humans can be victims of.
Now you might be wondering, are jellyfish dangerous to scuba divers?
But the real questions is: How dangerous can the gelatinous sac of a straggly tentacles be? And just how much is it a threat to divers?
Lets end all the doubts, once and for all.
Truthfully speaking, jellyfish are not a serious threat to divers. Majority of their species tends to stay close to the surface of the water. And since, a jellyfish sting needs to have a close contact with a person’s bare skin, divers are safer than swimmers and beach-goers. Thanks to the wetsuits or dive skins that divers wear, now they have little exposure to stings. And to completely avoid being stung, dive guides and dive centers usually alert divers if dangerous species are present.
If there are situations in which a diver spots a jellyfish, he or she should take at least a few-meter safe distance away from it. More over, divers must always be cautious of the surrounding since there are some species of jellyfish that have transparent tentacles which are over one meter in length, making it quite difficult (if not impossible) for the diver to see it underwater.
But no, don’t rejoice yet. As explorers of the deep, scuba divers must understand how dangerous the jellyfish stings can be, and not only rely on diving gear and assumptions.
The Jellyfish Sting: Is it really dangerous?
The effect of the jellyfish stings differ from mild pain and stinging, to skin blisters and irritation, to respiratory problem, cardiac arrest and worst case scenario, death. The toxicity of its sting varies upon which species of jellyfish and the person’s body’s reaction towards the jellyfish venom.
The Box Jellyfish (Caruka barnesi and Chironex fleckeri) is the most toxic type of jellyfish. It could be found in some regions of the Indo-Pacific and also in Australia. The venom of the Box Jellyfish has been know to kill one person within five minutes.
A jellyfish sting could be consider as a dose of poison in which people could react differently to. The smaller the person is, the greater the effect of the jellyfish sting can be. Just like how a person could be highly allergic to bees, they may go into anaphylactic shock from a single sting while it could have the same sever reaction towards other people who is unusually sensitive to jellyfish venom.
Treating a Jellyfish Sting.
While vinegar is mostly recommended as an immediate first aid for a jellyfish sting, its adverse effect and chemical reaction should still be put into consideration. What it could only do is to neutralize the jellyfish’s stinging cells, and has two primary benefits: first, it is to minimize the delivery of the venom, and finally, to minimize the pain and discomfort that it brings.
But there is no proven statistics that claims the effectivity of vinegar in most cases. There are also some argumentative statements, stating that there’s a possibility that it could only worsen the sting, threatening the life of the person being treated with.
Even the usage of freshwater can cause additional stinging cells to fire. It also not recommended to urinate on the sting to neutralize the venom.
In times like these, lets forget all the myths in treating jellyfish stings. It is always better to act and not wait for such things to happen. It is always better to go for a proven solution to prevent or stop the stinging mechanisms from acting.
And research proves Safe Sea is the way to go. Learn how it works below:
Safe Sea Jellyfish Protection Sunscreen an organic sunscreen offering double protection from the sun and jellyfish stings. It is a very water resistant sunblock, with higher UV protection, which can last up to 80 minutes of aquatic activities. This sunscreen is a research-proven product to
prevent jellyfish stings by deactivating the stinging mechanism of various marine stingers.
Safe Sea has a waterproof, slippery texture that makes it difficult for the stinging tentacles to attach to the skin. absorbs secretions from the skin that would otherwise tell the jellyfish that its in contact with prey or predator. Chemical stoppers in Safe Sea block the chemical pathways where the stinging process is activated.
A diver must be aware of the danger that could befall them if they do not take matters into consideration regarding jellyfish stings. And just because they look harmless, it does not mean they cannot threaten your life in a snap. So never let your guard down whenever you dive.
The good news is, for scuba divers or water-sports lovers, we don’t give up our passion for a threat. There’s always a solution to make us safe.
*Photo credits to the owners