8 survival myths that can get you killed( With Pictures)

You should suck the venom from a snake bite wound

This is a common belief that is wrong on so many scales. Many people think that if someone gets bit by a venomous snake, then the best thing to do is to suck the venom out as soon as possible.  In most cases, this particular practice will not work and the victim will still need to seek medical attention as soon as possible.  Snake venom travels to your blood system pretty fast so in most cases you will not be able to catch the venom in time. The best thing to do is to rush the victim to the nearest hospital where anti venom can be safely administered.  It takes about 30 to 60 minutes for snake bite symptoms to start arising. From vomiting to muscle weakness, these symptoms will only become worst until the proper medication is delivered. If you find yourself in a survival situation and there is no one to help there here are a few tips that can help your chances of survival

Survival Tips

  • Don’t Panic- Most Snake bites don’t cause instant death
  • Wash your Wound- Make sure you clean your wound thoroughly
  • minimize any activity that can raise your heartrate- this will slow the venom down from spreading
  • If you have no choice, jog to the nearest populated place where someone can assist that can help you
  • Don’t apply Ice- This has also been debunked and may actually cause more damage.
  • Don’t wrap your wound too tight- This will take away circulation and prevent oxygen from getting to the wound

There are about 30 different types of poisonous snakes in the U.S, but the viper, copperhead, and cottonmouth are most commonly seen.

Drinking your own urine is safe

Although drinking smalls amounts of urine may not be hazardous, a lot can be harmful and dean unhealthy. Urine in a survival situation may be your only go to and that’s fine in an emergency, but one should not drink urine for longer periods of time.  95% of your urine is water and the other 5% is everything your kidney filters out of your body, such as nitrogen, salt, potassium and too much of these minerals can cause issues in your body. When you drink urine you are putting waste back into your body, which will make it even harder for your kidney to filter.

So drinking urine is not recommended if you find yourself in a survival situation


You can drink water from a cactus

This is a common belief that just doesn’t hold water ( No pun intended) Cactus are said to be able to store water to for long periods of time and because of that, Many people think that the idea of extracting water from a cactus is plausible, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. When it comes to extracting water from a cactus you wouldn’t get a pure flow of water as expected. Most likely you would have to suck the water out risking ingesting poisonous plant material. The only cactus you can extract water from is a hedge Hog Cactus. This cactus is edible and has water, but getting to the water can be a little tricky. You would have to slice it apart and take out what looks like a cucumber, now this part of the plant is edible and has water, but you would have to squeeze the cucumber like material to extract the water.

You can eat lots of snow to re hydrate

Eating snow may seem like a sensible thing to do when you are in a survival situation, but eating snow could actually harm you rather than help. Eating or drinking anything frozen in an already cold situation will only make matters worse for you.  Eating snow can actually cause hyperthermia because once ingested you are actually freezing from the inside out. It’s best to let snow melt first before you drink it.  Also, snow can very well contain different contaminates and parasites. If you eat snow that been sitting on the ground for days can be compared to drinking water from a puddle of water that been sitting for days.

So can you eat snow in the wilderness? Yes, but only in small amounts. You should never eat large amounts of snow in a survival situation.

If you get attacked by a bear play dead

This is a very interesting myth that can get you killed pretty quick. When you come face to face with a bear,  depending on the type its best to back up slowly and leave. Some bears are less aggressive and you can run them off just by making loud noises, but there are other types that won’t run off as easily. Playing dead can work if you are being attacked and the bear loses interest, but this tactic is indeed risky. In fact, it may work with a grizzly or black bear but will not work on a polar bear. Polar bears rarely come across humans and will most likely see you as prey. If you were to play dead with a polar bear, chances are you will make an easy meal for this type of bear.  If you want to know more about how and why bears attack then check out this article on how to survive a bear attack.

Recommended actions to take against bears

  • Carry bear spray
  • Try to appear more aggressive by being loud and standing tall( will only work on black bears)
  • Try to avoid the interaction altogether

Your body completely submerges in quicksand

This is a myth that many people get wrong. Your body doesn’t completely submerge in quicksand. Quicksand is an irritation in the sand and if you step in it, you will most likely sink to your waist. The dangers of quicksand are not that you can sink fully, it’s that you get stuck and when you are stuck, it’s hard to get you out. It may seem like someone can just pull you out, but that just not true either. Most likely someone will have to dig you out or better yet, you can try to escape yourself.

How to escape Quicksand

Rule of thumb, don’t panic and try to fight your way out, that will only make matters worse. You are lighter than the quicksand so try to get your legs out by Leaning backward or forward then bear crawl your way out. This may take some time, but if you stay at it you will escape. Remember to fight quicksand horizontally not vertical. Here is an article I wrote that will go into more detail about escaping quicksand

Building a lean-to Shelter is the way to go

This is yet another myth that can kill you. When building a shelter, its best to build it in a way that will keep you warm and safe from the elements. But If it’s winter time you will definitely to build a shelter with walls and ground support. You see the ground can get very cold and if you build a lean-to shelter with just a roof, then there’s no way to keep you warm during winter months. Your best best is to create a nest type of shelter with thick leaves and vegetables on the ground. This will help keep you warm and shield you from the cold wind.


Rubbing two sticks together can easily start a fire

Rubbing two sticks together is a myth that can get you killed. To be honest with you, it will simply take too much power and time on your part to create a fire using this method. There are much better methods out there that will make things easier for you. Here are two stick methods below to consider.

The Bow drill method– This is very method that’s been used for thousands of years. It basically involves drilling a stick into another flat stick more efficiently by using a bow to instead of your hands. All you need to do is to provide some form of pressure at the top of the drilling stick and use the bow strings to wrap around it and the motion the bow in a saw-like manner.





Hand Drill- This is a simpler method but can be tougher. You basically do the same procedure as the bow drill except instead of using a bow you will use your hand. Find a stick to snap in two to creat a fire board. Cut you hole out on the edge with your survival knife and find a drill stick to place in your hole. After you find the drill stick then rub your hand together while the stick is in the middle of your hands. This will create friction with the wood and start a fire.




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