Due to their creepy-crawly nature, it is easy to see why so many people have a fear of spiders. While unappealing and fear-inducing, spiders can also be dangerous. The black widow spider is definitely a pest you do not want in or around your home. Not only can it frightening to see, but a black widow bite can be extremely painful and life threatening without immediate treatment. With this guide, you will learn a few key facts about the black widow spider.
The Hourglass Is Its Main Feature
If you are like most people, you have seen numerous spiders around your home. Most of these spiders are harmless, but protecting you and your family will require knowing the signs of a dangerous black widow.
These spiders are black in color, but the red hourglass shape on its back is the main feature that will help you distinguish the black widow from other spiders.
In most cases, the black widow will measure between 1 ½ and 1 3/8 inches long. While small, the black widow can do enormous damage.
The Bite Hurts
If contact is made to them or to their web, the black widow may bite you in defense. The bite does hurt and it can be hazardous to your health.
The bite can cause a sharp pain that leads to swelling and redness around the site. You may see two marks on the skin, which are actual puncture marks from the spider's fangs.
In a short period of time, the venom from the spider bite can cause muscle cramps, sweating, nausea, vomiting, and a fever. As the venom spreads, you may experience headaches, high blood pressure, and pain in the abdomen or chest.
If you are bitten, remain calm, but head to the emergency room for immediate medical care. Antivenom will need to be administered to stop the venom from spreading and harming internal organs.
Prevention Is Possible
Avoiding these spiders is best, but that is not always possible, so you will need to learn how to prevent black widows and other pests from your home.
Remove any clutter from in and around your home, since this clutter will attack spiders and other pests. Spiders are attracted to moisture, so removing containers of water, such as unused pots, planters, and toys from around your home is smart. Adding a vapor barrier or sealing your crawlspace is also helpful for reducing moisture in your home.
Be sure to wear gloves and shoes when working outdoors. Mowing the lawn, working in the garden, or trimming shrubs without this protective wear can increase your risk of a dangerous bite.
Lastly, consider applying a pesticide to the perimeter of your home. DIY solutions are available at your local home improvement or discount retailer. Or, you can utilize a pest control services technician to apply these perimeter treatments periodically.