People love to tell horrifying stories about insects and spiders. There is just something about these creepy critters that makes one’s skin crawl, and urban legends about dangerous spider bites do have a lot to do with how we turn largely harmful creatures into the protagonists of horror movies. But are all spiders aggressive and dangerous?
Do baby spiders bite? In general, spider bites are rarer than you might think. Only a few spiders have fangs that are long enough to penetrate human skin, and even fewer of them are so poisonous as to actually pose a danger. When it comes to poisonous spiders, baby spiders already have venom in their bite, but they are still less dangerous since usually, their fangs are not yet long and strong enough to inject the venom deep into human skin.
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Most spider bites are so harmless that you do not notice them at all. Sometimes, they can also cause redness, pain, and swelling. Spiders like the black widow or the brown recluse spider, whose bites can lead to severe pain and cramps, tend to live in undisturbed areas and only bite when they feel threatened. Even poisonous spiders do not actively seek out humans to hurt them – they just try to defend themselves in the manner that comes naturally to them.
Often, people tend to mistake bedbug bites for spider bites. There are some differences between them that can help you distinguish them: when you wake up with bites you have not had the night before, you might be dealing with a bedbug infestation. They feed at night, whereas spiders are not necessarily nocturnal.
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The amount of bites you find on your body also gives a hint as to what has bitten you. When you only see a single bite mark it might be from a spider – bedbugs tend to leave several marks in a group or a row. While bedbug bites are most frequently found on your neck, face, arms, or hands, spiders bite anywhere on the body.
If you are unsure what insect or spider has bitten you, or when you experience ongoing pain or even difficulties breathing, it is always a good idea to seek out a doctor.
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Do Spiders Bite You and Lay Eggs in the Wound?
No, this is an urban legend and definitely nothing you should worry about! There is no evidence to compound stories like this to be found in either medical or scientific literature. Spiders are very specific about where they lay their eggs, and the human body is simply not suitable.
They look for places without too much noise, moisture, or light, and, obviously stationary places are also preferred. A bite wound in a moving, talking human being would make no sense on both the moisture levels and the general activities going on.
Spiders prefer to lay their eggs on the underside of bushes or in attics and crawlspace – someplace calm, dry, and dark.
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What Are the Most Dangerous Spiders in the World?
Most species of spiders are not dangerous to humans. Even when it comes to poisonous spiders, it is extremely rare to die or get seriously hurt by a spider bite, since their venom is designed to work on smaller animals. Additionally, hospitals tend to have the necessary antitoxin on hand, so if you ever find yourself in a situation where a spider bite is a serious problem, your nearest hospital will be able to help you out.
Among the most dangerous spiders are, for example, the widow spiders. Aside from the well-known black widow spiders, there is also a brown widow and a red widow. Black widows are responsible for a large number of visits to poison control centers in the United States. Their bite feels just like a pinprick, but the venom can lead to stomach cramps, nausea, and difficulty breathing.
The venom of brown widows is said to be twice as powerful as that of black widows. They are not aggressive, though, and only inject tiny amounts of venom when they bite. Lastly, red widows only inject a small amount of venom when they bite. The symptoms of the bite of a red widow are similar to that of a black widow. The bites of all the widow spiders can be treated effectively with antivenin.
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Commonly regarded as the most dangerous spider in the world is the Brasilian wandering spider. The venom in its painful bite can result in muscle shock, and there are records of deaths even after the treatment with an antitoxin.