Snake bites are always dreaded for they may be fatal if the reptile is poisonous and no immediate action is initiated to take out the venom from the victim's body. In fact, a snake bite takes place when any snake sinks its teeth into the skin and it may result in a medical emergency if the reptile is venomous. To be precise, children, whose body size is small, are generally at an elevated risk for death or acute complications owing to snake bites.
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Although neither all snakes are poisonous, nor their bites deadly, there are several varieties of snake whose bites may result in immediate casualties. However, notwithstanding the poison injected into a victim's body through a snake bite, it is possible to save the victims' lives by using the appropriate anti-venom. When a snake sinks its teeth into the skin of any individual, the most important thing is to take him/ her to an emergency room without wasting any time. Snake bites usually do not have any critical effect if the victims receive timely treatment.
As snakes are able to survive in diverse environments, including land, sea, lakes, deserts, grasslands and forests, many consider them to be amazing or extraordinary animals. Although snakes are mostly considered to be menacing, the fact remains that these animals are always more terrified of humans than the humans are scared of them. Barring a few exceptions like the black mambas (Dendroaspis polylepis) and the king cobras (Ophiophagus hannah), most snakes do not belligerently attack humans unless they are provoked by the latter.
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It is interesting to note that although snakes do not have any limb, all varieties of snakes are essentially carnivorous. They prey upon other animals, such as insects, other reptiles, birds, relatively small mammals and occasionally even other snakes to feed themselves. There are approximately 3000 species of snakes in the world and among these just around 400 species actually inject poison or venom when they sink their teeth into the skin of other animals. There are a number of snake species that seize their victims by constricting their bodies. By constricting their bodies, these species of snakes actually suffocate their kill to death. Usually, they tighten around the chest of the prey making it impossible for them to breathe or often causing death by cardiac arrest. However, no snake kills its prey by crushing it. Conversely, there are some species of snakes that catch their prey with the help of their teeth and subsequently swallow them as a whole. This is common when they attack smaller animals like birds or insects.
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All snakes are cold-blooded animals denoting that they do not have the aptitude to raise their body temperature to survive in cold environs. Usually, snakes have been found to be very vigorous at temperatures ranging between 25°C and 32°C or between 77°F and 90°F.
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Snakes belonging to the elapid family (snakes having permanently erect fangs in the front of the upper jaw) include the Asian and African cobras, the Asian kraits, the African mambas, the Australian elapids comprising tiger snakes, costal taipan, death adders and king brown snake as well as the American coral snakes. While all these species of snakes are extremely venomous, even the lethal sea snakes are directly related to the Australian elapids.
Snakes belonging to the viper family (venomous Old World snakes having erectile, venom-conducting fangs) include moccasins, rattlesnakes, including the diamondback rattlesnake and timber rattlesnake found in the West; the Asian and African saw-scaled vipers, the American lance-headed vipers, African Gaboon viper, the Asian Russell's viper and the puff adder.
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Majority of the species of snakes belonging to the Colubrids - the most extensively dispersed and diverse family of snakes - do not possess venom that may be harmful for the humans. Nevertheless, a number of snake species belonging to this family, such as the twig snakes, brown tree snake and the garter snake of Japan do have venoms and may prove to be treacherous for humans. On the other hand, some other species of snakes belonging to the Colubrids family, such as the king snakes, American garter snakes, rat snakes and racers do not possess any venom and, hence, are basically not dangerous as far as humans are concerned.
Precisely speaking, snake bites caused by any of the snakes mentioned below are venomous and may result in medical emergencies:
As mentioned earlier, snakes are usually scared of humans and they will not bite unless they are provoked in some manner or the other. Snakes do bite when they are surprised or intimidated, but will generally keep away from people most of the time and bite when they find they are left with no other option to protect themselves.
Most people are of the view that snakes found in water or near water bodies are venomous. However, this conception is erroneous as majority of these snakes are not dangerous and in most cases bites by them do not result in critical conditions. However, never ever try to ignore a snake bite. If you don't know much about snakes or which species of snake has bit you, it is essential to seek emergency medical help in case of all snake bites. Always treat all snake bites seriously.
Several herbs have been found to be effective in treating snake bites. However, herbal treatment for snake bites are basically aimed at fast recovery and should be initiated only after the initial emergency medical treatment has been done. In fact, it is advisable to start herbal treatment for snake bites only when the victim has recovered sufficiently to leave the hospital. This is truer for children who have been bitten by snakes. You should always remember that you need to seek emergency medical help if your child has been bitten by a snake. Don't waste time unnecessarily to find the snake or any other reason.
Commonly used essential oils for snake bite:
The symptoms of snake bites may vary from being mild to acute. Usually snake bite symptoms include swelling and bruising of the area around the spot of the snake bite and a very rapid pulse rate. When infants and children become victims of snake bites they experience debility and shortness of breath. In addition, they may also complain of nausea and vomit. In case the venom of the snake is potent, the victim may also suffer from acute soreness as well as extreme swelling at the place of the snake bite. Other symptoms of snake bites in children may include dilation of the pupils, shock and seizures. In addition, they may experience uncontrolled shuddering or tremors and their speech may become slurred. A severe snake bite, when enough of venom is injected into the body of a child, may also result in paralysis and unconsciousness or fainting. Hence, it is advisable that in case your child becomes a victim of a snake bite, act instantly and seek medical help without wasting any time.
While the symptoms of snake bites are conditional on the species of snake, the amount of venom injected as well as the age of the victim, normally all such victims are likely to experience the following conditions after a snake bite:
It is essential for people residing in localities where snake bites are too common to keep themselves abreast regarding the first aid measures they need to undertaken when an individual is bitten by a snake - venomous or otherwise. In fact, not only they, it is important for everyone to have the basic knowledge regarding first aid treatment that need to be administered to people bitten by snakes. You never know when it may become handy. Below, find a list of first aid methods that ought to be provided to treat snake bite victims.
When a snake sinks its teeth into the skin of a person, it may result in an emergency causing the victim to behave panicky. Moreover, often people attending on the victim also initiate steps that may prove to be harmful for the patients. So, having discussed what you should do to help a snake bite victim, below, find a few points that you need to be careful to avoid. These are some of the 'don'ts' that will help the victim to recuperate faster.
While it is impossible to suggest infallible or foolproof measures to avoid being bitten by a snake, you may always adopt certain measures that will help you to prevent being a snake bite victim. Actually, there are two thing to do to prevent a snake bite - be watchful and prepared if you think you are venturing into any area where there may be snakes. Below, find a few tips that may help you to prevent a snake bite.
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