Spiders can be very unnerving and you need to be very careful if you encounter a black widow or a brown recluse spider. Being bitten by one can be very dangerous, even deadly.
Brown Recluse Spiders
People often times mistake the brown recluse for other spiders when the violin-shaped mark give away is hard to see. They aren’t aggressive spiders, but are venomous; and will bite if they feel threatened or trapped. You should seek medical attention immediately if you think you’ve been bitten by a brown recluse. Being treated right away is imperative and most times the bite will heal on its own without any scarring. Brown recluse bites can lead to infections and serious conditions like seizures or kidney failure. You may have pain, itching or burning at the site of the bite with redness and a deep purple color around the area. There can also be a dark blister or even an ulcer that can be bothersome and get larger for weeks after the bite. Before getting medical help you should wash the area with warm water and soap while elevating the area, if possible. Tie a bandage tightly around the bite area and apply an ice pack for 10 minutes on and then 10 minutes off. You’ll most likely be treated with pain relievers, muscle relaxers, ibuprofen and corticosteroids that will help with inflammation. If the wound becomes infected, you will likely need an antibiotic.
Black Widow Spiders
The black widow spider is identified by the red hour glass-shaped marking in its abdomen. They are not aggressive either and will bite only if feeling threatened or trapped. Death may result from a black widow spider as the venom is poisonous, but is extremely rare. If you are bitten, you may feel pain right away and the area will begin to swell and get red. After a few hours you may develop more symptoms and the pain you feel may not have anything to do with the location of the bite. You might feel pain in your chest and abdomen or muscles may cramp and get stiff because of muscle spasms. You may also feel pain in your shoulders or back with difficulty breathing, chills, nausea, a higher blood pressure that may cause a headache, weakness, sweating and fever. You need to follow the same steps on the way to seeking medical help as with the brown recluse. Treatment may include medications to lower your blood pressure and reduce pain. More severe bites may require a muscle relaxant or an antivenin or anti-venom.
Preventing Black Widow & Brown Recluse Spiders
If you live in areas that have brown recluse or black widow spiders, there are things you can do to prevent getting bitten. They both live in dark sheltered places or under leaves, rocks or piles of wood as well as under porches or in your home so clean up your yard by removing debris and eliminating places they can hide. You should be careful when picking up clothing or shoes as they are good hiding places.
The severity of the bite of these two spiders will all depend on the age and physical condition of the person bitten. If you can safely do so, try to catch the spider and take it with you to the ER for positive identification. If you are seeing unwanted spiders or other pests in or around your home, contact Dave’s Pest Control for a solution.