Scorpions are among the more common pests that humans come into contact with in North America, and their sting can be anything from painful to deadly. Depending on the species of scorpion that you are stung by, you could be in serious trouble. Would you know what to do if you were stung by a scorpion? If not, then this article will fill you in.
The first thing you should do if you are stung by a scorpion is get to the doctor. Do not depend on identification and things of that nature. If you do rely on this, and you are wrong or have an allergic reaction, the decision could be a deadly one. Scorpion stings are a medical emergency. If you are stung by a less than deadly scorpion, you will still be glad you went to the doctor. They are painful, and medicines can help.
Do not rely on whether you feel symptoms or not to judge severity. Scorpion stings will show symptoms in varying amounts of time. Give your sting due respect regardless of how you feel after the sting.
During transport to the hospital, or in the case where transport is not possible, one should lie as still as possible with the sting site below the heart. You should also completely immobilize the sting site appendage. Once in position, you should apply ice to the scorpion sting site.
When stung by a scorpion, you should not apply an old fashioned tourniquet to the appendage. You should apply a constricting band four inches above the site, but not so tightly that you have no pulse in the lower part of the appendage. The band should only be snug and not tight.
You will likely begin to swell from the scorpion sting. When the swelling begins to get close to the band, then you should apply a second band four inches above the existing one. Once the second band is in place, then take off the other. Never leave the bands on for more than a half an hour.
Scorpion bites can vary wildly in severity. Some are simply minor annoyances that hurt a little, while others can cause severe symptoms and death. For this reason, the medical staff will monitor you closely to see how your body will react. Based on this, your treatment will vary wildly.
For stings that are not serious, you will probably be given ice and pain killers to help ease the pain. For serious bites, you may have to take antivenin. This is a special medicine that is designed to counteract the venom that the scorpion injected into your body.
There are also a number of things you should never do for a scorpion sting. One thing is to self medicate. Leave the medicines to the doctors. They will give you what is needed at the hospital. If you attempt to put something in your body that reacts badly, you can make your scorpion sting much more serious than it otherwise would have been.
Never apply heat to a scorpion sting either. Heat will have a spreading effect with the venom, and will make it worse. Ice is the proper thing to add to a scorpion sting.
Finally, never cut or incise the wound. This is no longer an accepted way to remove venom from a wound. Likewise, you should never try to suck the venom out of the wound. If you have a cut or scrape in your mouth, and suck venom into it, you will be in even worse trouble.