There are a few spiders that are dangerous to humans. Two of those are the Black Widow and the Brown Recluse. Both prefer warm climates and dark, dry places where flies are plentiful. They often live in dry, littered and undisturbed areas, such as closets, woodpiles and under sinks.

Black Widow Spider
Black Widow

The female black widow can give a very nasty bite, but it’s not lethal unless a young child is bitten. You can identify this spider by the red hourglass marking on its belly. The bite feels like a pinprick. You may not even know that you have been bitten. At first you may notice only slight swelling and faint red marks. Within a few hours, though, intense pain and stiffness begin. Other signs and symptoms are: Chills, fever, headache, nausea, and severe abdominal pain.

Brown Recluse Spider
Brown Recluse

Black Widow Spider

Notice the violin-shaped
marking on its top

You can identify this brown spider by the violin-shaped marking on its top. The bite causes a mild stinging, followed by local redness and intense pain within 8 hours. A fluid-filled blister forms at the bite and then sloughs off to leave a deep, growing ulcer encircled by a red ring (looks like a bull’s eye on a target). Reactions vary from a mild fever and rash to nausea and listlessness. Other symptoms include weakness, joint pain, and shock. On rare occasions death results.

If bitten by a black widow or brown recluse spider:

1.Make a positive identification. If the bite is on an arm or leg, place a snug constricting band above the spider bite to help slow or halt the venom’s spread. Be sure that the bandage is tight enough to slow the flow of blood at skin level but not so tight as to cut off circulation in the arm or leg. The band needs to be loose enough to slip a finger underneath it.

2.For pain and swelling apply tincture of Virginia Snakeroot and/or Lobelia. To help fight infection, apply tincture of Bloodroot.

3.Apply a cloth dampen with water or filled with ice. Keep the affected limb elevated to about heart level.

4.Seek medical attention immediately.

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