Poisonous Spider Bite

Poisonous Spider Bite

If you receive a poisonous spider bite, one of the most important things is to remain calm and act sensibly. A lot of unnecessary suffering has been caused by panicking poisonous spider bite victims who have tried to cut open the wound, burn themselves with cigarettes or charcoal, running around instead of staying still etcetera.

You can prepare yourself by learning more about the spiders in your area; this way you will know what to do if you or anyone else receives a poisonous spider bite. Also keep in mind that spiders sometimes hide in imported goods and suitcases, so if you receive a poisonous spider bite while unpacking exotic fruit or emptying you suitcase after a vacation in another part of the world you should always inform the doctor. This way, the search for the culprit will not be limited to spiders native to your area and it will be easier for the doctor to correctly diagnose the poisonous spider bite. 

Poisonous spider bites are feared all over the world, and there exists a number of spider species that are capable of severely harming or even killing healthy adult persons. A lot of the stories regarding poisonous spider bites are however greatly exaggerated and there are also many cases very quite harmless, but scary looking, spiders have been blamed for health problems that they had absolutely nothing to do with. 

With a few exceptions, all spider species can produce venom but in many cases they are not dangerous to humans since the venom is too weak, have little effect on primates, is produced only in small quantities or is injected only in small quantities. The mouthparts can also be unfit to deposit venom deep enough to cause severe harm. Roughly 200 different spider species from 20 different genera are known to deliver a poisonous spider bite that can be dangerous to humans. Such bites can for instance cause severe wounds that will take months or even years to heal, systemic toxicity and even death.

Examples of spiders that can deliver an extremely dangerous poisonous spider bite are the Brazilian wandering spiders and the Australian venomous funnel-web spiders. You should also try to avoid contact with less lethal, but still harmful spiders like many species of Recluse spider and true Tarantulas. New world tarantulas,  Redback jumping spiders, Yellow sac spiders and False black widows are all know to deliver a really painful poisonous spider bite, but they are not really dangerous to humans.

A poisonous spider does not have to deliver a poisonous bite; many types of poisonous spiders are known to frequently refrain from injecting venom and instead deliver a so called dry bite. The mere mechanical injury caused by a spider bite is rarely a problem for humans, and the bite marks are often so small that we do not even see them. Washing the bitten area with water and soap can prevent infections, but completely cleaning such narrow wound is naturally difficult. If a bite mark becomes infected, antibiotics can be administered locally or orally. There are a few tarantulas that are renowned for causing quite a lot of mechanical injury, and we also have the so called sun spider but this species is actually not a spider at all.


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