One unexpected effect of the COVID-19 pandemic is an increase in dangerous snake bites. Doctors across the country are reporting they’re seeing more snake bites than usual this time of year, possibly because people are spending more time outdoors.
As people are spending more time running and hiking during the pandemic, officials have given snake bite warnings to prepare hikers. Snake bites are still relatively rare, but they are simply affecting more people because more people are outdoors.
Officials recommend wearing high-top boots, being careful while looking under rocks or branches, and keeping yards clear to avoid bites.
If you are bitten by a snake, doctors advise you to keep the wound close to heart level, and don’t walk on it to avoid circulating the venom in the bloodstream. Call 911 and wait for medical professionals to help escort you to a hospital. Doctors do not advise sucking out the venom or using snake venom removal kits.