Warning Flags Displayed on Many Popular Gulf Coast Beaches
Louisiana vacationers who love to find themselves languishing in the sun on the sand of the Gulf Coast's premier beaches will need to stop and think for a minute before they put even the tiniest tippy-toe in the water, at least for the next few days. There are actually several reasons why you'd want to understand what you're about to get into before you actually get into the water.
Purple Flags Have Been Flying at Many Gulf Coast Beaches this Week
While most of us are at least vaguely familiar with the beach warning flags the purple one is one that we don't see that often. And when we do see it, I can tell you from personal experience, that you need to pay attention to it.
The purple warning flag is displayed when there are signs of dangerous sea life detected in or around the beach. In the case of Gulf Shores, Orange Beach, Panama City, and Destin the purple flags mean jellyfish. If tuna is the "chicken of the sea" then jellyfish would be the "radioactive snot of the sea". Can you tell I don't care for jellyfish?
By the way, if you get stung by a jellyfish it can be a serious situation. Even if it's a tiny jellyfish it is possible your body could react violently to the venom. Now, those cases are rare and most of us just feel the burn and hate the pain until it goes away.
Medical professionals suggest that if you get stung by a jellyfish you should wash the affected area with seawater. Then you'll want to use tweezers or maybe a gloved hand to remove any other tentacles or jellyfish remnants you might notice on your skin.
If the sting isn't that serious you should apply vinegar or rubbing alcohol to the affected area to prevent any more stinging from the remaining tentacle pieces. To ease the discomfort associated with the sting you can apply Calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream. You might also apply an ice pack or even a hot compress, depending on whether you have swelling or not. The cold works on the swelling by the way.
Those tips came from the Cleveland Clinic. You'll notice nowhere in there did they suggest you urinate on your jellyfish sting. We're not saying you can't we're just saying the Cleveland Clinic doesn't suggest it.
What About the Yellow Flags That Have Been Posted on the Beach?
The yellow flags indicated the presence of moderate surf or moderate rip currents. We've already experienced how rip currents can change a vacation into a tragedy several times this beach season, so please pay heed to those warning signs too.
From what we understand the yellow flags have been posted the past few days around Destin eastward to Panama City. But lifeguards check sea conditions every day so those flag placements and warnings are subject to change. In fact, the National Weather Service is suggesting in their forecasts for the area that the dangers of rip currents and high surf should be decreasing from the beaches of Alabama at least as far west as Destin through the end of the week.
Now, you sand in your pants isn't your thing and you don't want to worry about jellyfish stings you might consider vacationing at these spots.
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