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How to treat a spider bite

First step, don’t panic: spider bites are very rarely fatal.

There’s good and bad news when it comes to spiders in Australia.

The bad news is there are around 10,000 species of the frightening little critters on our shores.

But the good (great!) news is the vast majority of them are not dangerous, and even the ones that are will rarely kill you. In fact, no one has died from a spider bite in Australia since 1981. Phew!

However, being bitten by a spider doesn’t exactly tickle. So if you or your child has a suspected spider bite (often what we think are spider bites turn out to be insect bites – keep the specimen to show the doctor if you’re worried), here’s how to treat it.

Wash the area with cool, soapy water to help clean the wound and prevent infection.

Apply an ice pack to the area for 20 – 30 minutes and elevate bitten extremities. This will ease the pain and help the swelling go down.

Take an Aspirin to relive minor symptoms of pain.

Monitor swelling and pain and seek medical advice immediately if you experience difficulty breathing, nausea, muscle spasms, difficulty swallowing, start sweating profusely or start to feel faint.

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