First Aid for Black Widow Bites

A black widow spider will deliver a venomous bite if given the chance, with females being much more likely to deliver large amounts of the venom than males. Females are, therefore, considered the most dangerous. They are often found in low-lying webs in dark corners and most bites occur in rural and suburban areas between the months of April and October. They bite defensively if they feel threatened and a bite is more deadly the younger you are.


What does a Black Widow Spider look like:

  • Long-legged
  • Shiny, coal-black spiders
  • Orange, red, or yellow shape on their belly that may or may not resemble an hour glass.


What are the symptoms of a Black Widow bite?

  • Sharp pain
  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Fang marks
  • Muscle cramps and spasms within 30-60 minutes of the bite
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Severe stomach, chest or back pain
  • Headache
  • Stupor
  • Restlessness
  • Shock
  • Sudden, severe high blood pressure.


How can I treat a Black Widow Bite?

  • Seek emergency medical treatment immediately. Try to bring the body of the spider if you can safely, but otherwise be prepared to describe its appearance to the doctor.
  • DO NOT apply a tourniquet. These often cause more harm than good.
  • Remain calm.
  • Apply ice.
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