What To Do If You Get Bitten By A Snake

With summer in full swing, many of us are out enjoying the great outdoors. But all kinds of things live outside our homes, including a few really unpleasant creatures.

This blog will focus on what to do in the event you’re bitten by a snake. The United States generally doesn’t have the types of famous venomous snakes that inhabit Africa, Asia and the Indian subcontinent, however here in Southern California there are a few nasty species to keep your eye out for. Some of these bad guys include sidewinders, and a few different species of rattlesnakes, including western rattlesnakes, and the mojave rattlesnake.

To avoid getting bitten by a snake, it’s best to keep away from brush and other concealed areas (areas under sheds and porches). If you disturb a snake’s home, they’ll defend their territory – some ferociously.

If you are bitten by a snake, here are some general rules to follow:

• Move away from the snake. Repeat bites are common in encounters where the victim doesn’t leave the area.
• Try to identify what kind of snake bit you. Failing a picture, try to get a mental image. This information will be helpful at the hospital.
• Keep the affected body part still. Unnecessary movement can spread venom and further irritate the injury.
• Even if you see no swelling or discoloration, get to a health clinic or hospital immediately.
• Do not try to suck the venom from your wound. If the snake is venomous, this just puts the poison into your mouth, throat and lungs. Bad idea – keep the venom as isolated as possible.
• Remove any jewelry. More than 50% of snakebites are to the hands. Remove bracelets, rings, watches and anything else.

And just like any other emergency, it helps to stay as calm as you can. The situation can become much worse by panicking.

According to the California Poison Control Center, rattlesnakes account for more than 800 bites each year in California, with most bites occurring between April and October when both humans and snakes are most active outside.

With our informative Southern California CPR training classes, as well as BLS classes, ACLS classes and other emergency training, SureFire CPR can help keep you prepared for any situation.  Our passionate and professional staff includes current and former emergency response personnel, including nurses, EMT technicians, firefighters and more.

To learn about our individual class offerings, or to schedule your group for essential instruction, please call us at (888) 277-3143.

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