Summer's here and the hiking
is fine... unless you run into a snake, that is. Never fear: according to the University of Maryland Medical Center
, there aren't many poisonous snakes here in the United States. Only rattlesnakes, copperheads, cottonmouth water moccasins, and coral snakes have poisonous venom.
How can you avoid getting bitten by a snake
? Common sense would dictate that you leave snakes alone, stay on hiking paths, wear thick leather boots, and be cautious around rocks.
After the break, I'll share what to do if you do get bitten by a snake. Check out the gallery to help you identify some species of snakes.
If you do happen to find yourself getting bitten by a snake
(like the time my husband was trying to remove a garter snake from our garage), the U of M Medical center suggests keeping an eye out for these symptoms: excessive sweating, fever, pain and swelling, loss of muscle coordination, nausea and vomiting, and a few others.
Call for help right away, wash the wound, and keep the bitten area still and lower than your heart. Some snake bite kits have suction devices that will suck the venom out of the wound, or you can make a tourniquet to keep the venom from spreading throughout your bloodstream.
Visit the University of Maryland's website
for more details, but keep in mind that getting medical assistance as soon as possible is the best course of action.
So hike safely and without worry this summer; you'll know what to do if you should have a run-in with one of our slithery friends.