First Aid on Snake Bite
Many cases of Snake Bite and death due to it are being registered even if the Anti Snake Venin is available in these modern days. We, the “ Homo Sapiens Sapiens ” the species with over grown brain interpret snake bite as a threat to us and that is why we kill them. We do so only due to our animal instinct of Survival but at the same time we are avoiding the fact that Snakes are also an important part of our Ecological balance. India has the highest death toll caused by Snake Bite. Almost 3,15,000 cases of snake bites are registered each year in India only and out of them about 15,000 to 20,000 people die.
Snake Bite is a very serious incident. It is advisable top move the bitten person to the nearest Hospital where Anti Snake Venin is available, as quick as possible. No First aid is necessary if the patient can be shifted to Hospital within 30 minutes of bite. The poison remains in the surrounding part of the bite. Chances of survival are great if the patient is treated within this period.
The bite victim should be given first aid if the Hospital is more than 30 minutes away. Some times symptoms take longer time to surface so we shouldn’t wait for the Symptoms but give the victim first aid. Appearance of the symptoms depends on many factors like resistance of the person, quantity of poison injected, place of the bite in body, season etc.
1. The victim shouldn’t be allowed to move as movement increases the blood circulation which spreads the poison quickly.
2. Victim should be encouraged so that he/she may not get frightened because many people have died due to sheer fright only.
3. Crepe Bandage should be tied above the bite not so tightly that it may stop blood circulation. The bandage should be tied 2 to 3 inches above the bite. If the bandage is not available tie any clean piece of long cloth instead.
4. Patient can be given Aspirin and Brandy if available.
5. Body should be covered if temperature is climbing down.
6. Victim should be given artificial respiration.
Don’t do this
1. It is not advisable to make a cut on the bite because it may cause tetanus if incision is made by non sterilized equipment.
2. Tourniquet shouldn’t be tied too much tightly as it stops the blood circulation and it may permanently damage that part of the body.
3. Bite shouldn’t be washed except clean, sterilized water or disinfectant.
4. The bitten limb shouldn’t be kept in ice cubes or controlled Electric shocks are not advisable.
5. Arrangements for stretcher and Ambulance should be made along with the first aid to shift the victim to the Hospital.
6. Prior intimation should be given to the Hospital about the arrival of snake bite victim.
7. The snake should be taken to the Hospital dead or alive so that the Doctor can Identify it and which ensures the quick treatment.