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So you like to hunt, fish, camp, and challenge Mother Nature. I bet you’re even into those “reality” shows such as Survivor, Naked and Afraid, and Man vs. Wild, watching them for their tips on how to survive the wild. But the truth is, in reality, those tips they dole out on those “reality” shows can actually get you killed, instead of saving your life. The following tips are the most common survival – yet very dangerous – myths around that need debunking ASAP.
Drink Cactus Water
Myth #1 is that you should drink cactus water to prevent dehydration. But this can be very dangerous as many types of cacti have liquid in them that can actually make you nauseous, causing you to throw up – thus, losing more body fluids – which leaves you worse off than had you not drank any cactus water at all.
Suck Out The Venom
Myth #2 is that if you get bit by a snake, you should immediately suck out the venom. Wrong. What you could end up doing is damaging the wound AND causing damage to your mouth and throat from sucking the venom out. Experts advice that if you get bit, you’re better off leaving it alone until you can get medical attention.
Find A Food Source ASAP
Myth #3: Always find a food source first when you’re stranded out in nature. Despite seeing all the these “survival” stars on their own reality shows doing this first, the truth is there are much more pressing issues that need to be tackled first; such as finding warmth, shelter, water. Those are far more important than food, which you body (amazingly) can survive up to six weeks without.
You Can Run From A Bear
Myth #4: You can run away from a bear. Nope, they’ll chase you down and eat you instantly. Despite their furry cuddly features, they’re the most dangerous animal you can ever cross – and if you do – here’s the only two appropriate responses: #1 if you come across a black bear, then you need to stand tall, opening up your jacket and shirt to make yourself appear bigger than you are. Or #2, if it’s a grizzly bear, don’t make eye-contact, back away slowly, and if he attacks, protect your vital organs while playing dead.
Drink Your Own Pee
Myth #5: If you become dehydrated you should drink your own pee. This tip made famous by Bear Grylls, which in turn made him famous, is one of the dumbest ideas of all – because should you be in a hot environment (90 – 100 degrees) you’ll only end up stressing out your kidneys more, causing you to overheat even more.
Punch A Shark In The Nose
Myth #6 is that if you’re being attacked by a shark that you should punch it in the nose to stun him. And to this I say “good luck”. Most people are nowhere near strong enough to throw an attack deterring punch. Instead, you’re better off poking the sharks eyes are ripping at its gills. But even then, a shark that hasn’t eaten for weeks will simply brush these attacks off and swallow you whole.
Ration Your Food
Myth #5 is that you need to ration and spread out your food in order to survive. But what is the point of rationing water for tomorrow, if you drop dead from dehydration today? So rather than that, focus on finding shelter, staying cool so that you don’t need as much water to ration with.
Survival Training Is For Pros
Myth #8 is that (for some stupid reason) survival training is only for professionals. Nonsense. Anyone who ventures out into the wild should learn even the most basic survival tips as you never know when you’ll need them to save your life.
You’ll Be Saved By A Helicopter
Myth #9 is that eventually you’ll be saved by a helicopter. This is wishful thinking for two reasons: #1 a helicopter is not likely to even be flying by looking for you. And #2, even if one does pass by, should you be stranded in heavily wooded terrain – where is the helicopter supposed to land? Exactly, nowhere.
Boiling Water Makes It Safe
Myth #10 is that to make water safe to drink, you just have to boil it. This however couldn’t be further from the truth. Boil salt water and you’ll only make it worse as you’ll be left with just salt. What you should do if you find fresh water is filter it through a cloth before boiling it to remove any dangerous debris.