If you’ve been unfortunate enough to experience a snake bite, it’s important to remain calm and take the right steps to ensure your safety. Here are some tips on what to do when you get bitten by a snake:
- Identify the snake. If possible, try to identify the type of snake that bit you, as this will help guide treatment decisions.
- Move away from the area slowly and calmly. Do not panic and run. Panicking can increase your heart rate and spread the venom more quickly throughout your body.
- Clean the wound with soap and water or an antiseptic if available. This will help reduce infection risk and may also reduce inflammation caused by venom toxins in some cases.
- Immobilize the area of the bite with a splint or other device if needed. Do not attempt to cut off circulation or tie anything tightly around it. This can cause more damage than good.
- Seek medical attention immediately after cleaning and immobilizing the wound area, even if you are uncertain about what type of snake bit you. Medical professionals have access to antivenom which is specific for certain types of venomous snakes that may have bitten you. This can be lifesaving in some cases if administered quickly enough after a bite has occurred.
- Take notes about any symptoms you may be experiencing so that they can be relayed accurately to medical personnel once they arrive. These may include nausea/vomiting, difficulty breathing/speaking/moving limbs, swelling at site of bite or other areas of body, or signs of shock such as pale skin or weak pulse. Any observed symptoms may help medical personnel determine how best to treat your particular case.
CSRE offers Community Courses, focused on the general population, Workforce education, targeted at industry and the commercial workforce, and Healthcare provider BLS and ECC (ACLS & PALS) courses from the American Heart Association and Health Safety Institute.