Young Honiton girl stung by jellyfish
PUBLISHED: 09:56 28 August 2013 | UPDATED: 09:58 30 August 2013
Mother sends warning to fellow beachgoers after her daughter was stung by a jellyfish.
A Honiton mother has issued a warning to beachgoers to keep their wits about them after her four year old daughter was stung by a jellyfish when paddling in the sea.
Gemma Lovegrove, 22, of Riverside Close, her children Eylia and Oscar, and other family members were visiting a beach in Weymouth on a day out.
Eylia and her two uncles were playing in the sea when she was stung by the jellyfish which was floating in the shallow waters.
“Everything was going fine until I heard Eylia start screaming and crying,” Gemma said. “Her uncle ran her up the beach to me and straight away you could see her foot had swollen up massively.
“There were two white strips on her foot, which was where the tentacles made contact with her skin.”
Gemma leapt into action and alerted nearby lifeguards, who bathed Eylia’s foot in salt water.
“She was distraught,” Gemma said.
“She’s scared of water as it is and this was only her second time in the ocean. Now this has happened, we’re back to square one.”
After treatment, Eylia’s swollen foot reduced but Gemma is still worried about future encounters with jellyfish.
“When I was dealing with Eylia, a woman told me that she watched another person get stung while in the sea the day before,” she said.
“I’d definitely keep an eye out for them when paddling in the future.”
The last outbreak of jellyfish in East Devon occurred in 2009, when Portuguese Man o’War jellyfish were found washed up on Seaton beach.
Although the outbreaks are rare, people are encouraged to remain alert when in the ocean as jellyfish stings can be severe at times.
Andy Phillips, EDDC beach safety officer, said: “This time of year, when our waters are warmer, we’re more likely to see things in the ocean like basking sharks and jellyfish.
“Jellyfish do have quite a sting on them and to treat it make sure you wash the stung area down with saltwater.
“If the stung person continues to suffer, they should seek medical advice immediately.”
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