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What is the appropriate treatment for a spider bite?

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Quick Answer

An appropriate treatment for a spider bite is the application of ice and an over-the-counter medication used to treat itching and redness. Elevating the area can also ease swelling associated with the bite, according to WebMD.

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What is the appropriate treatment for a spider bite?
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Full Answer

Most spider bites are not serious and can be treated at home. A person can apply an ice pack for the first few hours for 15 to 20 minutes at a time. Antihistamines such as Benadryl can also help to reduce discomfort associated with the bite. Calamine lotion can be applied directly to the skin to stop itching.

On occasion, some people are bit by spiders that require more medical attention. This includes bites from black widow and brown recluse spiders. In the event of a bite from one of these types of spiders, the person should immediately clean the bite with soap and water, according to the Mayo Clinic. Pain relievers can also help the pain. If the bite becomes infected, or does not heal on its own, a doctor may recommend antibiotics or a tetanus booster. In very serious cases where other treatments are failing, a doctor may decide to use an injectable anti-venom. Because this has serious side-effects, however, it is often reserved as a last resort.

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