If you've been to a beach, you understand this Summer health hazard: jellyfish. These critters come in all shapes and sizes, and are found in every part of every ocean, from close to the surface to deep sea waters.
Why does a sting hurt so much? A jellyfish sting comes from its tentacles, which carry venom — though only certain kinds of jellyfish will cause a reaction in humans. Tiny stinging structures called nematocysts cause the sting. When you come in contact with a jellyfish tentacle, millions of nematocysts fill with pressure until they burst, releasing a lance that pierces the victim's skin, followed by the venom. Depending on the type of jellyfish, the sting can feel like a mild prick to extreme pain. And even beached jellyfish can sting, so if you see one washed up on the beach, stay away.
To find out how to avoid and treat stings (and the truth or fiction behind a popular remedy), keep reading.