Health Encyclopedia

Human Bites

Human bites can easily become infected because of the number of bacteria in the human mouth. In fact, human bite wounds are more likely to become infected than dog or cat bites. A health care provider should check any human bite that breaks the skin.

Treatment for human bites

Remain calm and reassure your child that you can help. Specific treatment for a human bite will be determined by your child's health care provider. Treatment may include:

  • If the bite is bleeding, apply pressure to it with a clean bandage or towel to stop the bleeding.

  • Wash the wound with soap and water under pressure from a faucet for at least five minutes, but do not scrub, as this may bruise the tissue.

  • Dry the wound and cover it with a sterile dressing. Do not use tape or butterfly bandages to close the wound, as this could trap harmful bacteria in the wound.

  • Many times, human bites are treated with antibiotics to prevent infection. Call your child's health care provider to find out if additional treatment or a tetanus booster is needed.

Why Young Children Bite