Spiders seem to be more plentiful after a mild winter. Along with spiders comes the increase of spider bites. Luckily not all spiders are poisonous, but if you’ve ever been bitten by a venomous spider you should know how to treat the bite.
The Pacific Northwest can claim several varieties of spiders that carry a bite to be medically important. To know the difference between venomous, dangerous, and low-risk non aggressive spiders, refer to the USA spider identification chart. In the unlikely event you’ve experienced a bite, know when to seek professional medical care vs simple home care of the bite site.
Remember, prevention is the first defense in avoiding a nasty spider bite.
Per the Mayo Clinic, here is how to prevent spider bites :
- Wear a long-sleeve shirt, hat, gloves and boots when handling stored boxes or firewood, and when cleaning out sheds, garages, basements, attics and crawl spaces.
- Inspect and shake out gardening gloves, boots and clothing that have been unused for a while.
- Use insect repellents, such as DEET or Picaridin, on clothing and footwear.
- Keep insects and spiders out of the house by installing tight-fitting screens on windows and doors, and caulking or sealing cracks or crevices where spiders can come in.
- Discard old boxes, clothing and other unwanted items from storage areas.
- Store items you want to keep off of the floor and away from walls.
- Remove piles of rocks or lumber from the area around your house.
- Avoid storing firewood against the house.
- Vacuum spiders and spider webs and dispose of them in a sealed bag outside to prevent re-entry into the house.
Feature photo by Ray Bouknight