What to do for snake bites?

Cases of snake bites are reported every year in different parts of the world. A bite from a venomous snake can be fatal and must be treated as a medical emergency. Even a bite from a harmless snake can be serious since it can lead to an infection or allergic reaction. It is important to note that bites from venomous snakes can trigger various symptoms including swelling, pain, nausea, convulsion and even paralysis.

Several aid measures can be carried out when an individual sustained a snake bite such as cleansing the wound, staying calm and immobilizing the affected area. You can enroll in a class on first aid so that you are prepared to manage this injury. Nevertheless, it is vital to bring the individual to a healthcare facility for emergency treatment.  If prompt treatment is given, the outlook for recovery is good.

Identification of venomous snakes

Snake bites

It is important to note that bites from venomous snakes can trigger various symptoms including swelling, pain, nausea, convulsion and even paralysis.

There are various types of snakes and if you could not distinguish between the venomous and non-venomous snakes, it can be difficult to know how to act in case of a snake bite.

In case you are uncertain if the snake bite was delivered by a venomous snake, treat the event as if it was. If an individual sustained a snake bite, you will know right away. On the other hand, it is also possible for the bite to occur quickly and for the snake to disappear.

General indications of a snake bite

  • Two puncture wounds
  • Pain at the bite site
  • Redness and swelling around the wound
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Blurry vision
  • Salivating and sweating
  • Numbness in the limbs and hands

Rattlesnake bites

Rattlesnakes can be identified by the rattling sound they create using their tails which serves as a warning. These snakes are the biggest of the venomous species and cause most bite cases.

Symptoms

  • Immediate pain
  • Low blood pressure
  • Drooping eyelids
  • Muscle weakness
  • Thirst

Coral snake bites

Coral snakes have distinctive black, yellow and red bands that can be confused with the non-venomous king snakes. The distinguishing feature is that coral snakes have red bands that touch the yellow bands. These snakes live in marshes, woods and sandy areas and usually hide underground and in piles of leaves.

Symptoms

  • Delayed pain and symptoms manifest hours after the snake bite
  • Drooping eyelids
  • Convulsions
  • Stomach pain
  • Changes in the skin color
  • Headache
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Shock
  • Paralysis

Copperhead bites

Copperheads are usually found in swamps, forests, rocky area and rivers. These snakes are not aggressive and most cases of snake bites occur when an individual accidentally steps on one.

Symptoms

  • Pain
  • Weakness
  • Skin color changes
  • Low blood pressure
  • Shock

Water moccasin bites

The water moccasin is another type of pit viper. These snakes are usually found in or close to water and they do not scare easily.

Symptoms

  • Pain
  • Changes in the skin color
  • Weakness
  • Low blood pressure
  • Shock

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