Getting bitten by a brown recluse may seem scary, but there are home remedies for you to ease the symptoms. However, brown recluse spider bites can sometimes be serious and even potentially fatal because of the venom of the spider.
Know it when you get bitten
In the US, most spiders are venom-free except brown recluse spiders and black widow spiders. To get immediate treatment, first you need to recognize a brown recluse and the bite by it.
Recognize a brown recluse spider
A brown recluse spider is generally bigger that other spiders with a body ranging from 1/4 to 3/4 inch. Besides, the longer legs compared with other spiders make them look even bigger. Another special feature of a brown recluse spider is that it has only six eyes, while most spiders have eight eyes. There are two eyes on the front part and either side of the head.
Recognize the bite by a brown recluse spider
The bites are different from individual to individual. But there are some common symptoms:
- Mild stinging: you may feel mild stinging around the bite right after you get bitten.
- Severe pain: severe pain may occur within 8 hours after the bite.
- Color change: the bite may be blue or purple, and there may be a large red outer ring around the whitish ring which circles the bite.
- Fluid-filled blister: after a day or so, a fluid-filled blister may appear at the bite spot. When the blister comes off, a deep ulcer which might turn black may appear.
Symptoms you might experience
After about 8 hours or later after the bite, you might have fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, headaches, abdominal pain, pain in joints, joint muscle stiffness, general body malaise, rash on various parts of the skin, muscle tension or cramping, and very rarely, seizures or coma.
If you are experiencing severe pain, ulcers or symptoms, do not hesitate to see a doctor. The venom of a brown recluse spider can sometimes be fatal.
Home remedies for brown recluse bites:
How to apply:
1. Clean the wound with warm water and mild soap.
2. Apply a towel of ice on the affected area. The cold temperature of the ice can help numb the nerves, ease the pain, and reduce the swelling.
3. Place the ice for about 10 minutes and repeat as needed every several hours.
Hydrogen peroxide is antibacterial. The substances in it can help reduce the swelling and remove the infection.
How to apply: After cleaning the affected area, pour a little hydrogen peroxide on the bite and keep it for a few minutes. Wipe off any excess with a soft rag, and keep the wound dry after washing it.
Similar to hydrogen peroxide, salt water can also remove the infection, especially when you are using sea salt.
How to apply:
1. Add a tablespoon of sea salt (if you don’t have sea salt, table salt will do) to 1 or 2 cups of warm water.
2. Soak the bite in the mixture. Repeat up to 2 – 4 times per day.
3. Keep the bite clean and dry after washing it.