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Poisonous Spiders That Could Be Lurking In Your Home

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Spiders can be found anywhere, outside in yards, in wooded areas and even lurking throughout your home.  While many spiders are harmless, there are a few species of poisonous spiders that can get into homes and be a danger to you and your family.  Two poisonous spiders in Indiana, Kentucky and Illinois are the brown recluse spider and the black widow spider.

  • Brown Recluse Spider- Their body ranges in size from ¼- ½ inch and 1 ¼- 2 inches in total leg span.  They are a tan to dark brown color with a distinctive dark violin shape found behind their head.  They prefer undisturbed areas of your home like attics, basements, crawl spaces and areas under furniture.  Their elusive nature makes them difficult to find and eliminate.

  • Black Widow Spider- Their poison affects their victim’s nervous system.  They are glossy black in color with a reddish orange hour-glass shape on their belly.  They prefer to hide out in dark, warm secluded areas of your home.

A bite from either the brown recluse or the black widow can result in poison being injected into your system causing serious consequences.  A brown recluses’ necrotic venom can induce severe skin ulceration and scarring, however a bite does not always induce skin ulcerations in every individual.  Bites from a brown recluse generally occur after they have been trapped between something and skin; examples are putting on clothing that has been stored for a period of time, or rolling on one while sleeping in bed.   Black widow spiders are often found near woodpiles, in basements, attics, garages and sheds; it is important to keep those areas organized and clutter free so that you can spot the spider before they bite you.  A black widow’s venom travels through the blood stream and affects the nervous system; symptoms include severe abdominal and back cramping, tremors, fevers and difficulty breathing. 

If you are bitten by a poisonous spider you should seek medical attention.  While a bite from either species rarely results in death, they can cause severe reactions that require professional help.  Brown recluse spider bite treatment should start at home by applying a cold compress to the bite area and washing with soap and water.  Your doctor will most likely treat the necrotic tissue and ensure that the area does not get infected and if the area does become infected, antibiotics will most likely be prescribed.  A bite from a black widow spider should be treated with a cold compress; clean the bite area and then immediately head to your doctor's office or the emergency room.  Depending on the severity of your symptoms, they may monitor you overnight or for a few days.

Completely preventing spider bites may be difficult to accomplish but there are some things that you can do to help prevent you or a family members from being bitten.

  • Shake out clothing before putting it on; check shoes and boots before placing them on your feet.

  • Pull back your comforter and sheets and inspect for spiders before crawling into bed.

  • Caulk around windows and doors; make sure that screens are intact.

  • Seal cracks in your foundation.

  • Keep woodpiles away from the outside of your home; trim back bushes and trees away from your home so that spiders can’t hide in their branches and gain access to your home.

If you do find that you have a spider problem in your home or on your property, the best way to eliminate these arachnids is by getting help from a professional exterminator; they will be able to safely get rid of the brown recluse and black widow spiders and provide treatments to prevent re-infestations in the future.

Action Pest Control offers spider control for home and business owners in Indianapolis, Terre Haute and Louisville, as well as other areas in Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky. Contact Action Pest Control today for more information on their spider control services, including brown recluse spider control services