Survival Hacks: It Might Help To Know These Things One Day.

I know you might be expecting the typical "life hacks" article but this isn't that. These are survival tactics!  Or as DJ Khaled would say, "Keys to Success" and

 Also, I should advise that this article may contain heavy or graphic content. 

The following AskRedditors responded to the question, "What knowledge might save your life one day?" 

For more hacks, check out the original Reddit thread at the end of the article. 

How to defend against a black bear vs brown bear vs polar bear:

Your first move should probably be to get the heck out of there. Slowly. Back away. Slowly. The following advice is what you do if you have to defend yourself.

Brown/Grizzly bear: Don't attack, play dead. But, before you play dead you should attempt to slowly retreat first. If it attacks, you play dead. Lay on your stomach and cover your head with your arms. Don't move. Do not let that bear turn you over. 

Black bear: Make yourself as big as possible using tree branches, etc. Link arms with other people to make you look like one unit. Yell at it. Stand your ground.

Polar bear: Your only hope is to pray, you can't do much against a polar bear.


When someone shouts 'duck', don't question it just duck damn it.


If you are deep frying something and the entire pot is on fire, DO NOT PUT IT IN WATER! 

1) Turn off the gas/electric range. Don't pour water on it.

2) Cover the pot with a lid. Don't pour water on it.

3) If you don't have a lid, dump baking soda on it. Don't pour water on it.

If you do pour water on it, your house might burn down and your face might melt.


If someone gets stabbed, do NOT take the knife out if possible. If it stays in it acts as a plug to the hole and will reduce blood loss. Apply pressure surrounding the wound as best you can and call an ambulance.


If you have a squeezing, tight sensation in the middle of your chest that travels up the jaw and shoulders, or down the left arm, chew up an aspirin and wash it down with water and then call emergency services. You are likely having a heart attack and aspirin is known to thin the blood enough to save your life.

It could be a panic attack as well, as someone with wicked anxiety, the symptoms are unfortunately very close. I've taken that embarrassing ER trip as well, they said not to worry and how common it was for people to come in having panic attacks instead of heart attacks. 


Don't swim in Florida waterways at night, dusk, or dawn, because of teeth. But if you should find yourself in the mouth of a hungry gator, don't go for the standard eye poke, go for the nostril poke. Jamming your finger in their nostril breaks the seal they use to keep water out of their airways when submerged and they will release you instantly.


If a canker sore in your mouth or on your tongue isn't healing in about 2 weeks, it might not be a canker sore.

I'm going into surgery today, and they will likely remove 100% of my oral cancer, because of early detection.


If you get pulled out into a current at the beach, swim parallel to the shore to work your way out of the rip current before trying to swim back to shore. Fighting against it directly is only going to exhaust you a ton faster.


Never let a potential kidnapper, murderer or rapist take you to a second location.


Kangaroos cannot jump backward. 


Fighting mental health sometimes requires medicine and counseling. Don't be too proud or scared to seek help.


If you fall into cold water, instead of trying to swim you should try and float by fighting your instinct to swim. This should help you get over the initial shock of the cold water.


Bring a small mirror or reflective item whenever you're going some place or doing an activity where you could end up stranded. The shiny reflection from a mirror can signal rescue aircraft much more easily than most other methods. 


Always, always, ALWAYS have an emergency kit in your house and car. You think it's unnecessary until you need it.

Over 15 years ago (before cell phones) my family's car broke down on the side of an empty highway at midnight in the Canadian winter. That kit had blankets, food, and water that we used to survive until someone passed and helped us. 



Learn how to safely regain control of your car if you lose control or grip.

Steer into the direction of the skid!


There is no such thing as a fair fight. If it's a life threatening situation, fight dirty. Attempt to bite if you are pinned down, and press the base of your thumbs onto their eyes if necessary. As soon as you get the opportunity, run towards the nearest place with people around, and report to the police.

Obvious, but often people view fighting as a boxing match.


If you need to call the police without those around you knowing (domestic abuse, unaware intruder) call 911 and order a pizza. They'll ask if you know this is 911, say yes. Give your address and ask how soon they can get a pizza to you. Dispatch callers are trained for coded calls like this. I've heard they know to ask coded questions like "if there's an intruder say you want black olives" and what not. 


If you go swimming in a river always check the bottom before jumping in. Even if it is the same spot you have swum in before. The bottom can be filled in with rocks and sediment during the spring.

Also, if you are swimming in a very deep gorge or quarry it is probably best not to jump in, even though it seems super tempting. There is sometimes a second current further down, and lots of people drown by going too deep when they jump in and not being able to get back up. 


Don't move someone after a serious head trauma. You could potentially dislocate their spine causing a permanent vegetative state. You're supposed to ask them to lay still until paramedics arrive and help them hold their head in place while crouching near their head with a hand on both sides of the head.

You're only supposed to move if there is an immediate danger like after a car accident and there's a potential for the car to catch on fire.


If a hostile dog is confronting you, do not run. It can outrun you, and the minute you turn your back it'll see it as a sign of weakness and may attack.

Instead, keep eye contact with the dog and try to find something long like a branch or pole. Face the dog and start slowly backing in the direction you need to go while shouting at the dog. IF the dog comes at you hit it's face with the branch and shout, it will most likely back up out of the range of the stick. Use your phone to call for help if you can.



We are told that, if you're not confident, you should just "fake it til you make it."

This is great--in theory. In practice, sometimes "faking it" can have extremely real and terrible consequences, which these people found out the hardest of hard ways.

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