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How To Treat a Snakebite

Watch more Wilderness Survival Skills videos: Subscribe to Howcast's YouTube Channel - Know what to do if a snake takes a bite out of you or a loved one. Howcast uploads the highest quality how-to videos daily! Be sure to check out our playlists for guides that interest you: Subscribe to Howcast's other YouTube Channels: Howcast Health Channel - Howcast Video Games Channel - Howcast Tech Channel - Howcast Food Channel - Howcast Arts & Recreation Channel - Howcast Sports & Fitness Channel - Howcast Personal Care & Style Channel - Howcast empowers people with engaging, useful how-to information wherever, whenever they need to know how. Emphasizing high-quality instructional videos, Howcast brings you experts who provide accurate information in easy-to-follow tutorials on everything from makeup, hairstyling, nail art design, and soccer to parkour, skateboarding, dancing, kissing, and much, much more. Warning Snakebites are serious. Seek immediate medical attention. Step 1: Call 911 Call 911 before you do anything. Or, if you can, drive straight to the nearest emergency room. We don't want to scare you, but snake venom can lead to amputation of the infected limb if it's not treated quickly. Step 2: Know what not to do Know what not to do. Don't have someone suck out the venom (they'll infect the wound and make themselves sick); don't put ice on the bite or try to cool it off in any way; don't make a tourniquet, unless you want to lose the limb; and don't cut into the bite. Step 3: Keep the bite area below heart level If you're waiting for help to arrive, keep the bite below heart level. Step 4: Loosen clothing Loosen or remove any tight clothing around arms and legs. Step 5: Wash the bite Wash the bite area with soap and water. Step 6: Look into the snake's eyes If you or someone else managed to kill the snake, look into its eyes. Vertical pupils indicate poisonous snakes, while round pupils are usually the sign of harmless ones. In any case, bring the dead snake to the ER with you. Tip The exception to the pupil rule is the coral snake, which has round pupils and bands of red, yellow, and black. So remember this little ditty: "If red touches yellow, it can kill a fellow." Step 7: Avoid future bites Avoid future bites by looking before you step—or put your hand into any tall brush or dark crevice. In the wild, use a walking stick to sweep the area in front of you as you stroll. And if you do see a snake, slowly back away from it! Did You Know? Fewer than 10 people die annually in the United States from snakebites.
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