A snake bite can have many complications and should always be taken seriously. Though some are dry bites, which aren’t as dangerous, others are venomous, which, if not treated carefully and quickly, can result in death. Always seek immediate medical attention if you’ve been bitten by a snake, as it could be a matter of life and death. Here Any Pest details what steps you should take in the case you are bitten by a snake.
Snake Bite Venom
Snakes bite for the purpose of capturing prey or for self-defense. Since there are so many different types of snakes, it’s often difficult to tell right away if they are venomous or not. With that being said, different snakes carry different venom. The major categories include:
- Cytotoxins: Cause swelling and tissue damage wherever you’ve been bitten.
- Hemorrhaging: Disrupt the blood vessels.
- Anti-clotting agents: Prevent the blood from clotting.
- Neurotoxins: Cause paralysis or other damage to the nervous system.
- Myotoxins: Break down muscles.
Types Of Snake Bites
When defining snake bites, there are two different types.
- Dry bites: These occur when a snake doesn’t release any venom with its bite. These are mostly seen with non-venomous snakes.
- Venomous bites: They occur when a snake transmits venom during a bite.
Poisonous snakes voluntarily emit venom when they bite. They can control the amount of venom they discharge, and 50 to 70% of venomous snake bites result in envenoming or poisoning. Even with dry bites, every snake bite should be treated as a medical emergency. Delayed treatment could result in serious injury or possible death.
Symptoms will differ depending on what kind of snake bite you encounter. If you suffer a dry snake bite, you’ll likely have swelling and redness. But if you get bit by a venomous snake, you’ll have more widespread symptoms which include:
- Bite marks on your skin. These can be puncture wounds or smaller, less recognizable marks.
- Sharp, throbbing, burning pain around the bite.
- Redness, swelling and tissue damage, or complete destruction, in the area of the bite.
- Abnormal blood clotting and bleeding. Severe bleeding can lead to a hemorrhage or kidney failure.
- Low blood pressure, a faster heart rate and a weaker pulse.
- Nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, anxiety, headaches, dizziness and blurred vision.
- Difficulty breathing, or in serious cases, complete loss of breath.
- Increased production of saliva and sweat.
- Weakness in your muscles and numbness in the face or limbs.
Steps To Take Post Snake Bite
If you’re ever bitten by a snake, keeping these simple steps in mind might save your life.
- Call an Ambulance ASAP – Treat any snake bite as an emergency, regardless of whether you think the snake was venomous or not. Many snakes look similar, do not just assume it’s a nonvenomous snake.
- Don’t Panic & Try To Relax – Staying calm and still after a snake bite can help slow down the spread of venom in your body. Take long, deep breaths to help calm yourself down.
- Leave The Snake Alone – Don’t try to identify, catch, injure or kill the snake. This can lead to you being bitten again, making your situation even worse.
- Apply a Pressure Immobilization – If you’ve been bitten on a limb, applying a pressure immobilization bandage can stop the venom from moving through your lymphatic system.
- Leave The Bite Alone – There are a lot of old methods of treating snake bites that are now known to cause more harm than good. Don’t wash, suck, cut or tourniquet the bite.
At Any Pest we have been providing expert pest and wildlife control to Georgia residents for over two decades, and we have plenty of experience with snakes. You can trust us to provide you with the most efficient, and professional pest removal services in the metro Atlanta area.