Home Remedies for Spider Bites

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According to the Mayo Clinic, there are only 2 spiders in the contiguous United States that are poisonous to humans. The Black Widow and the Brown Recluse Spider both are poisonous, found in the US and prefer warm climates, dark, undisturbed areas with access to flies.

The Center for Disease Control also lists the Hobo Spider as venomous as well.



The Black Widow Spider


Found in the South and Western States in the US, the Black Widow Spider is identified by red markings on the underbelly, which can resemble an hourglass.   The bite of the Black Widow leaves a distinctive 2 point puncture mark. The venom is a neurotoxin, which causes pain the bite site, the spreads to other areas such as the chest, abdomen, or the body .

The Brown Recluse Spider

Located in the Midwest and Southern States, the Brown Recluse Spider is also known as the Violin Spider for its unique violin marking on its head and 6 eyes instead of the usual 8 eyes of most spiders. The Brown Recluse Spider can only bite humans if there is a counterpoint of contact, if the spider is trapped against the skin creating an alternative pressure point.   The bite of the Violin Spider is usually felt as a stinging sensation which can leave a small blister, which may turning to a lesion and may deaden (skin necrosis) .

The Hobo Spider

Located in the Pacific Northwest, this large brown spider has yellow markings on its underbelly and is known for the funnel webs it weaves. While it doesn’t climb, it does run fast and is aggressive when provoked. The bite will create a wound that is slow to heal.

Symptoms of Spider Bites


If the spider could be any of the venomous spiders, seek immediate medical attention. If the bite mark has the Black Widow double fang or if the skin appears to “rot” from the Brown Recluse – call 911 or get to the Emergency Room as soon as possible. Nausea, abdominal pain and trouble breathing should all be signals to seek emergency medical care.

 Other spider bites will cause symptoms ranging in intensity which could include:

    -Pain radiating from the bite site
    -Itching or rash
    -Increased sweating
    -Difficulty breathing
    -Headache
    -Fever or chills
    -Nausea or vomiting

Home Remedies for Spider Bites

Chill it

Apply cold water and ice to the bite location to reduce the pain and swelling from the bite.

Repel

Spray doorways, window sills and other openings in your home with WD-40 which is thought to repel spiders and keep them out of the house.

Elevate it

If the spider bite is on an arm or leg, elevate above heart level to reduce swelling.

Basil the Bite

Rub a pinch of basil on the bite site, until it turns into fine sand. The basil will ease the pain and reduce swelling.

Paste it

Make a paste from baking soda and water and apply in 20 minute cycles.

An Ounce of Prevention

Try to prevent piles of material outside, if not possible reduce the gaps in the piles. Wear long sleeves, boots and long pants when working around piles of wood or leaves.

References:

The Mayo Clinic online @ http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/first-aid-spider-bites/FA00048

Center for Disease Control @ http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/spiders/
 
The National Library of Medicine, The National Institute of Health online @ http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002858.htm

The National Library of Medicine, The National Institute of Health online @
http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002859.htm

Center for Disease Control @ http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/spiders/

Article Last Modified Monday, October 26, 2009
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