- Snakes are unlikely to attack unless they feel threatened, startled, provoked and/or cornered.
- Encountering a snake is dangerous and it’s always advisable to leave the vicinity immediately.
- Do not disturb or provoke snakes. Wearing long sleeve shirts, pants and boots can prevent snakebites.
- Be extremely cautious when entering potential snake hiding-places such as bushes, shrubs, and under large rocks.
- Common symptoms of snakebites are fear, panic, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fainting and localized redness. Though some bites are extremely painful, some other, equally serious or more serious bites might cause little pain.
- Symptoms may become more life threatening over time, hypotension, tachypnea, tachycardia, internal bleeding, altered sensorium, kidney failure, respiratory failure and coma.
- Stay calm. Remember and if possible, identify the snake. Protect the patient and others from further bites by removing the victim from the immediate area if unsure if the snake has fled.
- Keep the victim as still as possible.
- Remove constrictive items such as rings, watches and bracelets. Keep the bitten limb steady and lower than the heart.
- Call for help and seek emergency care immediately.