Symptoms of a spider bite may vary depending on the type of spider that bit you.
Here are the most common symptoms of a spider bite.
In some cases, a bite may cause:
- A red bump under the skin
- A red halo around the bite
- A blister in the affected area
- Swelling of the surrounding skin
Spider bite symptoms in children
A child’s symptoms may be different than those of an adult. For example, a child may complain of a red bump, which is the most common symptom of a spider bite.
Symptoms of a bite in children can also include:
- A red spot or lump on the skin
- Redness around the bump
- A red, painful rash
- A rash on the face or scalp
- Itchy or dry skin
- Itchy skin
Children may also complain of:
- Muscle aches
- Persistent redness
- Redness along the hairline
Spider bites and tarantulas
A tarantula is a venomous arachnid. These spiders have two distinct body sections, called prosoma and opisthosoma. The prosoma is the head and the opisthosoma is the abdomen.
Spider bites and other spider bites
You may also have a spider bite if you come into contact with a spider whose fangs are too long for your skin. This is known as a fang to skin contact.
Symptoms of a fang to skin contact include:
- A red, itchy bite that looks like a mosquito bite
- A bite that appears to be infected
- A bite that develops a red rash
These symptoms may be accompanied by:
- A headache
- A stiff neck
- Muscle weakness
- Difficulty breathing
If the fang to skin contact is serious, it can lead to envenomation, which is a medical emergency.
How to treat a spider bite?
For the best long-term results, it’s important to get medical treatment for a spider bite.
You can treat your spider bite at home. Here’s how to do it:
- Wash the affected area with soap and water.
- Apply a nonprescription antibiotic cream or ointment to the bite.
- Place a bandage over the bite to protect it.
You should also keep the affected area clean and dry.
In some cases, you may need a tetanus shot to prevent a tetanus infection.
Treatment for a spider bite can require several weeks, so it’s important to follow your doctor’s directions.
If you have a spider bite on your face or a spider bite that’s in the same area of your body, you may want to seek medical attention.
If you have a spider bite on your hand, you can treat it at home.
You should gently clean the bite. You can also apply a nonprescription antibiotic cream or ointment.
If you have a fang to skin contact, you should wash the area and cover it with a bandage.
You can also treat a bite at home if you’re experiencing any of the following:
- A red, itchy rash
- Trouble breathing
- Severe pain
How to prevent a spider bite?
It’s harder to prevent a spider bite than it is to treat a bite.
You can help prevent a spider bite by making it a priority to take care of your skin. This includes washing your hands before handling dangerous objects.
You can also prevent a spider bite by following these tips:
- Keep the spider away from your home.
- Avoid sharing any bedding with the spider, including pillows and sheets.
- Check your house and yard for spiders.
- Be on the lookout for strange and unusual places where spiders can hide.
- Wear long pants and long sleeves when you’re outside.
- Avoid touching spider webs.
When to see a doctor?
If your spider bite doesn’t improve within a few days, or if you develop any of the following symptoms, you should visit a doctor:
- The area around the bite becomes itchy, swollen, or red.
- The bite appears infected.
- The bite develops a red rash.
- You have difficulty breathing.
If your spider bite is in your home, you should follow these tips:
- Wash your hands before touching the affected area.
- Take the affected area of skin out of the house.
- Place a bandage over the bite.
It’s best to call 911 if you think you’ve been bitten by a spider.
In some cases, you may be able to treat your spider bite at home.
This includes applying a nonprescription antibiotic cream or ointment and keeping the affected area clean and dry.
How long do spider bites last?
It can take several weeks for a spider bite to heal. You can help speed the healing process by following these tips:
- Wash your face daily with water and a gentle cleanser.
- Cover the bite with a bandage.
- Avoid scratching the bite.
If you need to leave the area open for 24 hours, you should do so.
You should also avoid touching the affected area. If possible, you should also wash your hands.
Are spider bites contagious?
Yes, spider bites can be contagious. A spider bite can transmit a spider venom to you, or it can transmit other diseases.
In most cases, spider bites don’t cause symptoms. In rare cases, spider bites can cause symptoms that may last a long time.
A few people are also allergic to spider venom. This can cause symptoms like:
- Itchy, red rash
If you have any of these symptoms, you should see a doctor for a spider bite.
The bottom line
If you’ve been bitten by a spider, it’s important to get medical attention.
A spider bite can be a serious, but treatable, medical emergency.
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