Spider Bite

Spider Bite. Effective Treatment & Supplements for Spider Bites

Updated: 10/17/23

If you live in an area with many spiders, chances are you’ve encountered a spider bite or two in your lifetime. While the majority of a spider’s bites cause minimal to no pain and discomfort, they can still be quite alarming. From swelling and soreness to reddening skin around the site of the bite, these reactions all deserve attention to prevent further complications – but what treatment options are available? Fortunately, there are a few simple steps that can help treat a spider bite at home as well as some natural supplements on the market that can help speed up recovery time. In this blog post, we’ll break down everything you need to know about how to recognize and treat a spider bite as well as provide some tips for preventing them altogether.

What is a Spider Bite?

A lot of us have probably experienced a spider bite at some point in our lives, but not all spider bites are the same. While most spider bites are just a common nuisance, others can be dangerous and potentially life-threatening. Knowing what a spider bite looks like and the symptoms to watch out for can help prevent complications and ensure prompt treatment.

Let’s start with what a spider bite is. A spider bite is also known as arachnidism and simply refers to an injury that occurs as a result of being bitten by a spider. In most cases, the effect of a spider bite is minimal and nothing to worry about. Essentially, it’s just a puncture wound caused by a spider’s fangs when it bites. Some spider bites are harmless, while others are venomous. In some cases, the venom may cause mild symptoms such as itching and swelling at the site of the bite. However, some spider bites can be life-threatening, particularly those from venomous spiders such as the black widow or brown recluse spider. The good news is that most spider bites are not serious and can be treated at home with basic first aid.

Basically, you could see very mild symptoms around the region where the bite occurred and nothing further would occur. There is rarely ever any severe pain resulting from a serious injury caused by a spider. Spider bites are quite uncommon occurrences and of all the species that bite, only a few actually cause any real damage. Most spider venom, with the exception of very few, has little or no effect. Spider bites that may cause problems are the widow, recluse and the false black widow spiders.

Characteristics of a Spider Bite

It is a lot easier to identify a spider bite if you see the spider actually biting you. This is because most spider bite symptoms are similar to allergic reactions to a number of other insect bites.

A number of people experience allergic reactions to spider bites which may spread beyond the localized area to other regions of the body. Also, certain spider bites may lead to the body exhibiting some unique symptoms which are generally easy to notice.

If you are bitten and start to experience one or more of these symptoms, seek medical help.

Visible Bite Marks

In some cases, spider bites may leave visible marks. Bite marks can be seen as two puncture-looking marks. This visual indicator can help identify the type of spider that caused the bite.

Pain and Swelling

After a spider bite, swelling of the bitten region is a common symptom. The swelling usually begins after a while and may have a distinct red coloration different from the rest of the skin. In some cases, it may resemble a sunburn. However, the difference is that this swelling may persist longer than a sunburn. Similarly, throbbing pain could accompany the swelling. After a few days, it might turn purple. Also, this pain and swelling may not be localized or restricted only to the area where the bite occurred. It may sort across the body upon to the back, chest or belly.

Chills, Nausea and Sweating

Chills, nausea and sweating are all somewhat interlinked since they are all flu symptoms. Experiencing flu-like symptoms after an insect bite could be a clear indication that the insect bite you got was from a spider. Nausea refers to a sensation or an intense urge to vomit or throw up, which stems from some form of irritation and could be very intense. Experiencing a headache after insect bite could also be a clear symptom that you have been bitten by a spider and more specifically, a black widow spider bite. These symptoms could also indicate that you have been bitten by a different spider species. A fever is not a rare occurrence as well.


Stomach cramps as a result of a spider bite can vary from moderate to severe and should prompt you to seek medical attention.

Bites from certain spiders such as brown recluse spiders and black widow spiders could cause very severe muscle cramps that could bring about unbearable pain. Similarly, you may experience severe stomach cramping, which may feel like you have appendicitis or your appendix has been ruptured.

If you were bitten by a brown recluse spider, the pain will likely increase for the first eight hours after the bite before it begins to subside.

Difficulty Breathing

Some spider bite victims also experience difficulty breathing and it may either be mild or severe. Difficulty breathing simply refers to an individual having difficulty with oxygen uptake. This is usually due to some underlying ailment or symptom.

If you are bitten by anything and begin to have trouble breathing, seek medical attention immediately. This may be a result of the bite or an allergic reaction to the bite.

Other Symptoms

An insect bite with bruising around it could indicate that a spider was the culprit. An insect bite that turns purple after a few days is typical of spider bites that have become infected.

Insect bite infection could occur if the spot that was bitten is not well taken care of, insect bites on the scalp could be pretty difficult to identify especially when you have a thick head of hair, instead, you can get someone to take a look at it for you. Household spider bite symptoms include sweating, itching or rash and headache, amongst others. A white tail spider bite, however, may include swelling, skin discoloration and nausea and vomiting in some cases.

Can Spider Bite Cause Joint Pain?

Spider bites can cause a wide range of symptoms depending on the type of spider that has bitten you. While most spider bites can lead to mild symptoms, some spider bites can be dangerous and require medical attention. One of the symptoms that some people experience after a spider bite is joint pain. This can happen because the venom from the spider travels through your body and affects your nervous system, causing inflammation and pain in your joints. A hobo spider can cause joint pain.

However, it is important to note that joint pain is not a common symptom of spider bites, and it usually occurs in cases where the spider is venomous. Some of the spiders that can cause joint pain after a bite include the black widow spider, the brown widow spider, and the brown recluse spider. These spiders have potent venom that can cause a range of symptoms, including severe joint pain.

Spider Bite on Lip

Spider bites on the lip can cause a range of symptoms, from mild to severe, depending on the spider species, area of the bite, and individual factors. Symptoms may include redness, swelling, a burning sensation, or even numbness. Other effects can include itching, pain, and a blister-like bump in severe cases. So, what causes spider bites on the lip? Spiders are typically non-aggressive, but they can be provoked if they feel threatened. Bites mainly occur when a spider is pressed against the skin, for example, if you roll over in bed and squash one. Typically in North America, the brown recluse and black widow spiders are the most venomous species.

If you suspect you have a spider bite on the lip, you should act fast to prevent any complications. The first step is to wash the affected area with soap and water to remove any leftover venom. Afterward, apply ice to the area to slow down the venom’s progress and lessen the swelling. Avoid using any lotions, creams, or ointments that may trap the venom under the skin and hinder healing. If the bite is severe, and you experience severe symptoms, seek emergency medical attention immediately.

Spider Bite on Eyelid

Getting a spider bite on your eyelid can be a scary experience, but it’s important to stay calm and take the appropriate steps to deal with it. Identify the spider, clean the area, monitor the bite, and seek medical attention if necessary. Prevention is always the best cure, so make sure you take steps to keep your home spider-free. With these tips in mind, you’ll be able to deal with a spider bite on your eyelid without any trouble.

What Spider Bite Looks Like

First, let’s talk about the most common spider bites: the brown recluse and the black widow bites. Brown recluse bites look like a small, flat, red mark that’s shaped like a violin. It’s important to note that not all brown recluse bites show this characteristic shape, but if you see a red mark that’s spreading and changing in color, seek medical attention immediately. Black widow bites, on the other hand, feel like a pinprick and then quickly become painful, often with muscle cramps or spasms. The bite site will be swollen and red with two small puncture marks in the center.

There are other spiders that can give you a bite as well, and while they may not be as dangerous, they can still be unpleasant. Wolf spiders, for example, can bite you if they feel threatened, but their bites are usually painless with minimal symptoms. Orb weaver spider bites can be painful, but they’re rarely serious.

If you suspect that you have been bitten by a spider, it’s best to seek medical attention promptly. A doctor can identify the spider species, assess your symptoms, and provide appropriate treatment. Some spider bites require antivenom, while others require pain relief and wound care.

Spider Bite Characteristics

Causes of Spider Bites

Venomous Spiders

The first and most obvious cause of spider bites is venomous spiders. These include the black widow, brown recluse, and hobo spider. The venom from these spiders can cause allergic reactions and in some cases, can be fatal. The symptoms of a venomous spider bite include pain, redness, swelling, and muscle cramps. If you have been bitten by one of these spiders, seek medical attention immediately.

Non-Venomous Spiders

Not all spiders are venomous, but their bites can still be painful and irritating. These include wolf spiders, jumping spiders, and common house spiders. Non-venomous spider bites may result in redness, itching, and swelling. In most cases, the symptoms will go away on their own within a few days.


The third cause of spider bites is provocation. Spiders generally don’t like to bite humans, but they will do so if they feel threatened. For example, if you accidentally disturb a spider’s web or nest, it may feel threatened and bite you in self-defense. To avoid spider bites caused by provocation, be careful when you’re in areas where spiders are common. Try not to disturb their webs or nests, and if you do, move away slowly.

Nesting Habits

Some spiders, such as the brown recluse, tend to make their nests in dark and cluttered places such as closets, basements, and attics. If you disturb their nest, they may see you as a threat and will attack. To avoid this, keep your home clutter-free and clean.

Poor Hygiene

Poor hygiene can also contribute to spider bites. Spiders are attracted to dark, damp, and cluttered environments, which can provide an ideal habitat for them to thrive. Keep your living and workspace clean and free of clutter. Vacuum regularly, especially under furniture and in corners, to eliminate spider webs and other debris.

Pre-Existing Medical Conditions

Certain pre-existing medical conditions, such as allergies, heart disease, or immune system problems, can increase your susceptibility to spider bites. If you have a pre-existing medical condition, speak to your doctor about ways to decrease your risk and what you should do in case of a spider bite emergency.

Accidental Contact

Another cause of spider bites is accidental contact. This can happen when you unknowingly brush up against a spider or its web, causing it to defend itself. Be aware of your surroundings, especially when outside or in natural areas.

Food Sources

Spiders are drawn to areas where they can find food, such as kitchens, pantries, and gardens. If you have a bug infestation in your home or garden, this may attract spiders. Take steps to eliminate the food source, such as sealing up cracks and crevices, cleaning up crumbs and spills, and using pesticides or natural repellents.

Treatment for Spider Bites

Preventing spider bites is always the best course of action. To minimize your risk of being bitten by a spider, it’s important to take simple precautions such as wearing protective clothing when working outside, shaking out clothing and shoes before putting them on, and keeping your home free of clutter and spiders.

Most of the spider bites that people get are from nonvenomous spiders. When a nonvenomous bite occurs, there is really no cause for alarm. The first step simply involves cleaning up the bitten area using soap and water and the application of an antibiotic ointment to soothe the area. Afterward, you would need to pay close attention to the bite in order to detect any signs of infection. Also, after you have been bitten, you would need to rest, then to reduce pain and swelling, a cold compress works. Finally, elevate the area irrespective of whether it is your arm or leg.

Home remedy for spider bites includes aloe vera gel which helps to soothe the skin and essential oils which may help relieve the pain and speed up the healing process. Finger infection treatment stemming from an infected so cute is pretty easy. All you have to do is apply a warm compress or let your hand remain in warm water for 10-20 minutes at a minimum of twice every day. Afterward, apply an antifungal cream or an antibiotic and then leave cover it with a sterile bandage. Spider bites do not typically fade off shortly after, they point where the bite took place could possess some discoloration.

Supplements for Spider Bites

These supplements are for use after medical treatment, if it is rewired.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that can help reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process. If you’re bitten by a spider, taking a high dose of vitamin C can help reduce swelling and pain. You can also apply vitamin C topically to the affected area to soothe the skin and promote healing. Look for a vitamin C supplement that contains bioflavonoids, which can enhance the absorption and effectiveness of the vitamin.


Zinc is an essential mineral that plays a role in immune function and skin health. Taking a zinc supplement after a spider bite can help boost your immune system and promote healing. Zinc can also help reduce the risk of infection from the bite. Look for a zinc supplement that contains at least 30 mg of elemental zinc, and take it with food to avoid stomach upset.


Bromelain is a natural anti-inflammatory enzyme found in pineapple. Taking a bromelain supplement can help reduce swelling and pain after a spider bite. Bromelain can also help break down the proteins in spider venom, making it less potent. Look for a bromelain supplement that contains at least 500 mg of bromelain per capsule.


Echinacea is an herb that is commonly used to boost the immune system and fight infections. Taking an echinacea supplement after a spider bite can help the body fight off any bacteria or viruses that may have entered the wound. Echinacea can also help reduce inflammation and pain. Look for an echinacea supplement that contains at least 500 mg of echinacea per capsule.

Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is a natural substance that can help absorb toxins and impurities from the body. Taking activated charcoal after a spider bite can help absorb any venom that may be in the bloodstream. Activated charcoal can also help reduce gastrointestinal symptoms that may occur after a spider bite. Look for an activated charcoal supplement that contains at least 500 mg per capsule.


Turmeric is another highly effective supplement that can help reduce inflammation in spider bites. It contains a compound called curcumin, which has been shown to have potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Turmeric can be taken as a supplement or applied topically to the affected area in the form of a paste.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera possesses a soothing characteristic that makes them great for inflamed spots such as those caused by spider bites.

Plantain Leaf Extract Powder

Plantain leaf extract possesses wound healing abilities and this is namely due to the numerous properties that it boasts of. Some of these include anti-ulcerative, anti-oxidant, antifungal, antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

You can use this as a topical treatment or as a Plantain Leaf Extract Powder supplement, consult your doctor and determine if this would be useful in your situation.

Chamomile Extract

Chamomile extract is known for its ability to treat a very wide range of human ailments including hay fever, muscle spasms, inflammation, insomnia, wounds, ulcers, hemorrhoids and rheumatic pain among others.

You can take chamomile extract once or twice a day in dosages of up to 800mg, or as directed by your physician.

Witch Hazel 

Witch hazel is touted to possess antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties. These are very useful in treating a series of ailments including scalp sensitivity, acne and hemorrhoids.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar possesses antimicrobial properties which aid in the inhibition of bacterial growth as well as a reduction in acne breakouts. Generally, apple cider vinegar powder helps to support generally healthy skin.

The Bottom Line

A spider bite is generally not a cause for alarm as most are non-venomous in nature. However, it is essential that you take care of every bite to avoid infection. Similarly, keeping your surroundings clean and free of insects/ arachnids is one precaution that you should always take.

By identifying the type of spider bite you’ve received, cleaning the affected area, and using natural remedies or seeking medical attention when necessary, you can ease symptoms and prevent further complications. Remember to take preventative measures to reduce your risk of being bitten in the first place and always monitor the area for any signs of infection or worsening symptoms. With a little bit of knowledge and preparation, spider bites can be managed without causing undue stress or harm.

Spider bites can be a scary experience, but with the right supplements, you can ease the symptoms and promote healing. Vitamin C, zinc, bromelain, echinacea, and activated charcoal are all supplements that can help reduce inflammation, boost the immune system, and absorb toxins from the body. While these supplements can be effective, it’s important to remember that proper medical care is still necessary for serious spider bites. If you experience severe symptoms, seek medical attention immediately.

Author: Ryan Quigley
Graduate of Longwood University in Virginia. Part-time sports journalist covering the Vegas Golden Knights.