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▷ With Jellyfish, Beach Shoes are mandatory

nature -

▷ With Jellyfish, Beach Shoes are mandatory

There aren't many things more enjoyable than spending a day at the beach. It's hard to imagine more fun than splashing around in the waves and having fun with water sports. However, the slightest misstep and a jellyfish can ruin the day. An easy way to protect your feet from injury is to put on a pair of water shoes. They offer much more protection than the usual summer shoes. In this article, we are going to tell you about jellyfish, shoes and other dangers!

What is a jellyfish ?

Fascinating, elegant and mysterious to observe in the water, the jellyfish turns into a much less fascinating speck if taken out of the water. Indeed, jellyfish are made up of 95% water.

Devoid of brains, blood or even a heart, jellyfish are a fairly simple creature. They are composed of three layers: an outer layer, called the epidermis, an intermediate layer made up of a thick, elastic and gelatinous substance, called the mesoglea, and an inner layer, called the gastrodermis. A basic nervous system, or nervous network, allows jellyfish to smell, detect light, and respond to other stimuli. The simple digestive cavity of the jellyfish acts as a stomach and intestine, with a single opening for the mouth and anus.

These simple invertebrates are members of the cnidarian family, which includes creatures such as sea anemones, sea whips and corals. Like all members of its family, the body parts of the jellyfish radiate from a central axis. This "radial symmetry" allows jellyfish to sense and react to food or danger from any direction.

Jellyfish have the ability to sting with their tentacles. Although the severity of stings varies, in humans, most jellyfish stings cause only minor discomfort.

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How to avoid jellyfish stings ?

Nothing beats a vacation for having fun on the water. However, skin infections, bites and stings resulting from contact with marine life are some of the most common injuries among tourists visiting islands or shorelines. According to some estimates, up to 150 million jellyfish stings occur each year worldwide. Before entering the water, you can limit the risk of injury by learning about local marine life and swimming conditions.

Here are some steps you can take to prevent jellyfish stings:

  • Avoid swimming in the sea when jellyfish warning signs are posted,
  • Do not touch jellyfish in the water or on the beach,
  • Prepare a first aid kit and take it to the beach,
  • Make sure your routine vaccinations are up to date, including tetanus protection,
  • Wear a full suit if the risk of jellyfish is proven,
  • Wear water shoes in shallow water or rocky areas,
  • Make noise or tap your foot when walking in shallow water to let sea creatures know you are approaching,
  • When you go shellfish gathering or shellfish fishing, only put your hands where you can see them and avoid putting your hands or feet under recesses where animals could hide,
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  • You can also swim near a lifeguard who can give you first aid or, if your symptoms are severe, call an ambulance

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Jellyfish, but not only

Jellyfish aren't the only sea creatures you might come across on your next vacation by the sea. Some of them can make encountering them a painful experience. There are three types of injuries associated with marine animals:

  • Contact toxins: stings caused by jellyfish, sea anemones, coral, sponges and sea urchins
  • Injected toxins: envenomation caused by stingrays, stingrays and scorpion fish.
  • the bites of predators such as barracuda, moray eel, sea snake and shark.

The injuries caused by marine animals are more or less serious: lesions, rashes, burns, itching and pain on contact, vomiting, cardiovascular collapse, respiratory stress and paralysis. Even small abrasions and cuts can cause infections when bacteria, viruses or other pathogens enter the body. It is important to keep wounds clean at all times.

Marine animals generally only sting or bite humans when touched or threatened. Keep a respectful distance from any marine life you encounter and avoid touching corals and sponges.

Marine injuries often occur when people step on stinging or biting animals in shallow water. As such, a pair of beach shoes is an essential protective accessory. Note that thin footwear offers little protection against spiny animals, such as sea urchins.

It is especially important that travelers with pre-existing conditions such as debilitation immune system, diabetes, kidney disease, liver disease, cancer, blood disorders or HIV be aware of the risk of infection when coming into contact with marine animals.

Some bites and stings are minor, can be treated with first aid and do not require medical attention. However, you may need to consult to manage the pain, remove pieces of coral, recalcitrant nematocysts, and to properly clean the wound.

For puncture wounds, it is also prudent to get a tetanus shot (even if you are up to date), as well as to be prescribed corticosteroids and antibiotics to prevent infections For example, infections due to Mycobacterium marinum bacteria cause skin lesions, while Vibrio vulnificus and Vibrio parahemolyticus can cause wound infections and gastrointestinal illness if ingested. Tell your doctor if you have been in fresh or salt water. If your doctor sends a sample to the lab, the lab may need to make adjustments to compensate for the presence of salt water.

Taking an antihistamine after contact with a toxin released by marine animals is also recommended to prevent an allergic reaction. Watch out for symptoms of anaphylaxis, a severe and life-threatening allergic reaction to the toxin. Seek emergency medical attention if the person has difficulty breathing, changes consciousness, or loses consciousness.

Injuries from contact toxins

In general, wounds from jellyfish, sponges, coral, fire coral, anemones and sea urchins cause redness, swelling, rash, burning, itching and pain on contact. For example, if left embedded in the skin, coral can cause pain and irritation for weeks. Note that anemones, some corals and jellyfish release nematocysts into the skin, making the wound very painful. To deactivate the nematocysts, always rinse with seawater or salt water, then use plenty of vinegar.


Rinse and dry, lift the ends with tape, apply a topical corticosteroid to reduce inflammation and take an antihistamine.


Remove encrusted coral by rinsing with seawater or a scrub brush and applying a topical antibiotic.

Sea urchin

Remove the thorns, clean the wound, soak it in warm water and apply a topical antibiotic.


Remove tentacles, rinse with seawater, use ice for pain relief, apply hydrocortisone and take an antihistamine.

méduse évoluant dons une eau bleu roi

Injuries from injected toxins

If venom is injected into your body by a stingray or stingray, seek immediate medical attention for proper wound treatment, which includes soaking the affected area in warm water for 30-90 minutes. Find out if stingray anti-venom is available.

Predator bite treatment

The majority of predator bites are the result of provocation. These types of injuries are common among anglers. If you are bitten by a large barracuda, moray eel, sea snake, or shark such as the great white, tiger, or hammerhead shark, seek medical attention immediately. Note that despite media reports of shark attacks, there are approximately 50 incidents involving humans per year and approximately 10% of these are fatal.

Puncture wounds and cuts

Wear water shoes to protect your feet from puncture wounds and cuts from shells, broken glass and other sharp objects. Do not go in the water if your skin is cut, bacteria in oceans and lakes can cause infection.To avoid complications from a puncture wound, see a podiatrist for treatment within 24 hours


The feet also get sunburned. Rare but deadly skin cancers can appear on the foot. Don't forget to apply sunscreen on the tops and bottoms of your feet.

Sand, sidewalks and paved surfaces get hot in the summer sun. Wear beach shoes to protect your arches from burning, especially if you have diabetes.

Ankle injuries, arch and heel pain

Walking, running, and other sports on soft, uneven surfaces like sand often lead to arch pain, heel pain, ankle sprains, and other injuries. water shoes designed for sport offer the heel cushioning and arch support that flip flops and sandals lack. If injured, use rest, ice, compression, and elevation to relieve pain and swelling. Any injuries that do not go away after a few days should be checked by a podiatrist.

Diabetes risks

The 5 million French people with diabetes face serious risks to their feet at the beach. This disease leads to poor blood circulation and numbness in the feet. A diabetic may not feel pain from a cut, puncture wound, or burn. Any type of skin lesion on a diabetic foot can become infected and ulcerate if not noticed immediately. Diabetics should always wear water shoes to go to the beach, and take them off regularly to check for foreign objects like sand or shells that can cause sores , ulcers and infections.

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What to do in case of a jellyfish sting ?

As a priority, seek help from a lifeguardr or someone trained in first aid. If there is no help available, see below what to do and what not to do. These include:

  • rinse the affected area with sea water (not fresh water),
  • Put lots of vinegar on jellyfish stings. This prevents nematocytes that have not yet released venom from doing so. If vinegar is not available, wash with sea water,
  • remove the thorns from the skin using tweezers or the edge of a bank card,
  • soak the affected area in very hot water (as hot as possible) for at least 30 minutes. Use hot cloths or towels if you cannot soak the area,
  • take painkillers like paracetamol or ibuprofen,
  • machine wash the swimsuit.

What not to do in case of a jellyfish sting:

  • You may have been told to urinate on jellyfish stings. Do not follow this advice.Urinating, rubbing the wound with sand or rinsing with fresh water activates nematocysts stuck in the skin,
  • Do not apply ice or a cold pack,
  • Do not touch the thorns with bare hands,
  • Do not cover or close the wound,

Go to a medical center if you have:

  • severe pain that won't go away,
  • been stung in the face or genitals,
  • difficulty breathing,
  • pain in the chest,
  • convulsions,
  • significant swelling around the affected area,
  • significant bleeding,
  • vomiting,
  • dizziness or loss of consciousness,

Jellyfish stings can also cause raised circular areas on the skin (welts)

Méduse morte échouée sur le sable de la plage

Protect your feet from jellyfish, wear beach shoes

Marine fauna is full of less welcoming creatures and you have to be aware of this when you move about in the water. Your equipment and your attitude must be adapted to your environment and the dangers it can represent. At Aquashoes, to avoid injuries caused by jellyfish, we recommend wearing beach shoes.

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