Many creatures, including humans Human Bites Because human teeth are not particularly sharp, most human bites cause a bruise and only a shallow tear (laceration), if any. Exceptions are on fleshy appendages, such as the ears, nose, and... read more , bite when frightened or provoked. Others include
Bites may cause injuries ranging from superficial scratches to extensive wounds and often become infected with bacteria from the mouth of the biting creature.
Certain animals, insects, and arthropods can inject venom (poison) through mouthparts or a stinger. These venoms range in toxicity from mild to life threatening. Even mildly toxic venoms may cause serious allergic reactions. Creatures known for their stinging bites include
Doctors diagnose most bites and stings by talking with and examining the person. If a wound is deep, x-rays or other imaging studies are sometimes done to look for teeth or other hidden foreign material. The most effective way to prevent infection and scarring is usually thorough cleaning and proper wound care, done as soon as possible. Doctors usually ask about a person's tetanus vaccine history Vaccination Tetanus results from a toxin produced by the anaerobic bacteria Clostridium tetani. The toxin makes muscles contract involuntarily and become rigid. Tetanus usually develops after a wound or... read more . If necessary, a booster shot is given.