Rabies is a life-threatening viral infection caused by an animal bite. According to World Health Organization, around 60,000 human deaths are reported each year because of rabies.

Read here in detail 4 simple steps that one must practice immediately after a dog or any animal bite. Also know why you should never ignore an animal bite, even if it is just a superficial scratch.

Why you should never ignore an animal bite?

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Whether you are bitten by an animal or it has just scratched you, make sure to see a physician immediately. Rabies is believed to be 100% fatal. If left unattended, rabies can infect you in two different forms:

  • Paralytic rabies: It is a less common form, in which the muscles slowly get paralyzed leading to coma and death of the infected person.
  • Furious rabies: It is a more common form of rabies infection, which can cause anxiety, confusion, excessive salivation, and difficulty in swallowing.

4 things to do after a dog bite

Here are 4 simple things that you must do immediately, if you get bitten by a dog or any rabid animal:

1. Examine and press the wound

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Press the wound gently to flush out infection causing germs. Then, wash it with mild soap and water. Washing the wound also reduces the chance of infection. Place a clean towel over the injury to stop the bleeding. If it still continues to bleed, keep the injured area elevated to reduce the blood-flow to the wound.

2. Apply an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment on the wound

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Apply OTC antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin at the site of infection and wrap it with a sterile bandage. It is advised to change the bandage 3 to 4 times a day to avoid the spread of infection.

3. Visit the doctor

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Make sure to visit your doctor no sooner you get bitten. Once your doctor examines the wound, s/he can determine if the bite was superficial or deep enough. And, whether it has affected the muscle or nerve or not!

During the visit, the doctor may ask you these questions:

4. Watch for the signs of infection

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Signs of infection should be carefully examined for redness, pus like discharge, swelling and excruciating pain. If these signs are observed, immediately contact your doctor.

For any query related to animal bite and wounds you can consult an Emergency Medicine specialist at www.healthcaremagic.com

About the Author

Amrisha Narayan

Amrisha Narayan is a master’s in pharmacy and an experienced medical writer/editor with a decade-long experience. Her scientific papers have been published in leading journals. She is an avid reader and enjoys traveling.

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