10 Natural Remedies for Spider Bites

| Modified on Jun 17, 2023
Spider Bite Natural Remedies

The effect of a spider bite can range from mildly irritating to quite dangerous depending on the type of spider that inflicts the bite, the severity of the bite, and the individual reaction of the person who receives the bite. Natural remedies like baking soda, activated charcoal and Epsom salt work to relieve the pain and inflammation from the bite, draw out the poison, fight secondary infections, and promote healing of the skin.

1. Baking Soda

Baking soda is a remedy that can be quickly applied to a spider bite. Mix baking soda with water into a paste consistency. Apply the paste to the bite. Make sure you cover the bite completely and even apply the paste beyond the initial borders of the bite. Baking soda draws out the toxins and relieves pain and inflammation. Keep a box of baking soda in your car or a small container of it in your backpack. It has so many applications you will be glad you have it on hand at all times.

2. Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal powder can be used internally and externally to treat spider bites. If you have charcoal tablets you can take 1 or 2 on an empty stomach 2-3 times a day with a full glass of water. The charcoal will take poisons out of the system. Do not take charcoal within 2 hours of any medications that you take.

You can make a charcoal poultice to apply to spider bites. These poultices relieve pain and draw out the poison. A paste can be made of coconut oil and activated charcoal and applied directly to the bite as well.

3. Honey

Honey is a wonderful healer, especially if you can get raw and local honey, preferably in a glass jar! Honey is particularly useful when there is an open wound related to the bite. Apply the honey into the wound several times each day. Honey can also be taken internally to help your body to heal from spider bites.

4. Potato

Raw potato is a folk remedy that is used to draw out infection. Grate a raw potato and apply it to the spider bite. Cover with gauze and a bandage. Change the potato poultice every few hours.

5. Tea Bag

Another simple remedy is to use a tea bag as a poultice for your spider bite. Black tea, green tea or even some herbal teas (like chamomile or red raspberry leaf) will work nicely to draw out infection. Simply moisten the tea bag with hot water and apply to the bite. You can attach it to the bite with an ace bandage or cohesive tape. Change the tea bag as it dries out or every few hours.

6. Essential Oils

Essential oils are inherently antiseptic. Many also relieve inflammation and prevent infection. Lavender and tea tree essential oils can be applied to the bite neat (without diluting) unless you are applying them to sensitive skin, near the eyes, on mucous membranes or children. One or two drops will suffice. Peppermint essential oil is especially useful if the bite is “hot.” Peppermint will cool the bite. Oregano oil is also an excellent oil for bites but it must be diluted to use on the skin. Add one drop of oregano oil to small dab of coconut oil or healing salve to apply to the bite.

7. Plantain

If you happen to have plantain growing nearby, crush a leaf with your finger and apply to the bite. Cover with a bandage. Change the plantain every few hours. Plantain is wonderful for relieving pain.

8. Echinacea

Echinacea tincture can be used internally and externally to bring healing to a bite. Apple a few drops of the tincture to the bite several times a day and take the tincture in some water internally according to the package directions.

9. Iodine

Iodine is an antiseptic that can be applied to the bite. It will help to prevent infection.

10. Epsom Salt

For multiple bites or bites that are producing a significant reaction, Epsom salt baths can be used to draw out the poison and bring relief to the inflammation. Add 1  ½ cups of Epsom salt to a warm bath 1-3 times daily.

11. Vitamin C

A vitamin C supplement will support your immune system and will help your skin to heal more quickly. Sodium ascorbate is the ideal form of vitamin C. Because your body uses vitamin C quickly it should be taken 3-4 times daily. You may be able to tolerate as much as 1,000 mg at a time. If you begin to get loose stools, cut back the amount you take a bit.

12. Turmeric

Turmeric is a wonderful all around healer. It will help reduce pain, itching and inflammation, It can help to prevent secondary infection, including staph infections which are not uncommon when broken skin is involved. Turmeric is also a blood purifier. Golden milk is an excellent way to take turmeric but turmeric capsules can work well also. 2-4 capsules can be taken 2-4 times a day.

Additional Considerations

  • Benadryl can be used to reduce swelling and any systemic type of reaction.
  • Sugar depresses the immune system and should be avoided when you are trying to heal a serious spider bite.
  • Keeping the bowels open will help the body to remove toxins from a spider bite. Constipation allows poisons to recirculate in the body. Do address any constipation issues.
  • See a doctor if the bite is accompanied by red streaks on the skin, fever, chills, vomiting or any other serious side effect.

Do you have a spider bite remedy? Please send us some feedback!

Additional Pages of Interest:

Brown Recluse Bite Remedies

Activated Charcoal

3 User Reviews
5 star (3) 

Posted by Cg (Texas, US) on 03/24/2015

I had a brown recluse spider bite last year, called the closest dermatologist office who never returned my calls, so, so I did some research and ended up making a paste of activated charcoal, applied it to the wound (after popping and draining the blister and removing the loose skin) for about 3 hours to neutralize the toxin; I also swallowed some of the activated charcoal (use capsules) to neutralize the toxins internally. Afterward, I used bentonite clay powder to make a paste and applied it to the wound to draw out the toxins, etc., changing it out 3-4 times daily until healed, which it did in about a week with only a light brown scar about the size of a nickel. I'm glad the dermatologist office didn't return my call and I'm glad I researched natural remedies.

Replied by Debbie
(St. Louis, Mo)

Hi, so glad I found this site. I notice a red itchy bite on my left arm this morning. The area developed a small pinhead size pustule. I first applied, coconut oil mixed with turmeric. To reduce the itching. Did not seem to be helping, then I tried raw honey. Still not better.

Getting more concerned. I had bought a while back a brown recluse spider bite kit. It has the charcoal powder and liquid echinacea, lobelia & plantain mixture. I have been placing the poultices throughout the day.

After reading the reviews of others. Thank you so much. You have put my mind a peace with what I'm doing. I see I am doing the right thing.

I just drank a glass of the activated charcoal as well. For internal detox of the venom.

It seems from what I have read, if I would have went to the ER, they really don't know what to do. Right? They seem surprised at how a simple poultice of activated charcoal and the liquid drop mixture draws out the venom from the bite. So much that the bite heals fine.

So I just keep applying the mixture till it bite is totally gone?

Replied by Mama To Many

Yes, that is what we would do in our family. Continue with what you are doing until it is healed. Good job on dealing with it yourself, and thanks for sharing!

Activated Charcoal
Posted by Elizabeth (Woodbury, TN) on 09/29/2006

We've used activated charcoal many times in our family and friends for the brown recluse spider bite. Even a couple of doctors here were amazed at what it did! We would make up a paste and change the first day about every 2 hours and then the next day just a few times and would keep watching it. Usually the bite was shrunk and just a little scab after a few days. Usually we would also drink some so that we would have any poison from the bite eliminated from our system.

EC: Read more charcoal cures here.

Replied by Heather
(Milton, Pa)

i would like to get the recipe for the charcoal paste if u wouldnt mind. thanks

Replied by Dave
(Fountain Inn, Sc)

Charcoal is good to draw out poison but try Echinacea.

I found a book written by an MD published around 1920 on an Herbal web site: Case studies on snake bites, spiker and other insect bites. Echinacea was the cure. I've experiemented on useage and have found it to be the best thing I have ever come across for almost instant relief and CURE for insect bites. On a mosquito bite, for instance, apply topically with five drops. Apply again in five to ten minutes. Itch and irritation gone.

Another anacdotal: My wife and I had friends over to our house for supper and they brought their 12 year old son. He had a large red bite on his neck... Much larger than a mosquito bite. He kept scratching and rubbing it. His mother said she had thought it was just an insect bite but now was believing a spider was most probable.

I asked permission to use echinacea to treat the wound. I held a poultice of twenty drops on the bite for five minutes and then the boy held it for another ten minutes. I gave him a fresh poultice with another twenty drops when they left and watched him with poultice on his neck as they drove away. That was on a Thursday night as I recall. Sunday at Church, I saw him and the bite redness was gone. You could barely tell anything had been wrong with his neck.'

For snake bites the book I mentioned above discussed the method that the author asserts is good for even the most dangerous North American snakes. He kept repeating that he could only comment on the case studies out of North America because that was the only case studies he had access to. He did not know if echinacea would work on bites of snakes outside America. He had a lot of examples from Texas because that is where he practiced. (The writer was an MD.)

For snake bites, apply an echinacea poultice of forty drops directly to bite, replacing every hour. Also once an hour put five drops of echinacea in water and have victim drink. Have victim drink five drops evey hour for ten hours. Apparently too much echinacea over time consumed internally might create problems and that MD was aware of that but in none of his examples did any side effect come about from the echinacea taken in those quanties for a ten hour period. (He is giving case studies of poisionous snakes and poisionous spiders.)

Now obviously I am not recommending treatment of a snake bite in lieu of seeking immediate medical treatment at an emergency room. But I'd sure take echinacea with me on a wilderness trip. Or I'd use it on my way to an emergency room.

Replied by Jeanne
(Portland, Or)

I found this website and remedy treatments after I was bit on my thigh by a hobo last month. Thank you, thank you, thank you to all the people who posted! We made a paste from activated charcoal, echinacea drops and plantain. I applied that every 4 hours for the first two days and then twice a day for a couple of weeks after. I had 3 boils from the bite and only one popped (naturally) which has left a small hole. Otherwise the other 2 boils healed naturally. I used ice packs (not heat, as advised), kept my leg elevated and avoided strenuous activity for the first week. I feel fortunate because I noticed the bite within a few hours after it happened so caught it early. We have since, caught multiple hobos in our yard using glue traps. Thanks again, everyone, for sharing!

Replied by Julie
(Lakeland, Florida)

Thank you for the advice about the activated charcoal! I got bit by a brown recluse and started using it at about 30 hrs in. My bite was starting to turn black and was almost the size of a baseball. After just one patch, it was smaller and turning pink again. A couple days of that and it is almost flesh tone with no wound! It was the only thing that seemed to work and I think it saved me from what would have been a horrible situation!

Apple Cider Vinegar and Baking Soda Poultice

1 User Review
5 star (1) 

Posted by Sabita C. (Orange City, Florida) on 08/26/2018

I also found an effective poultice to be made from saturating 2 folded up paper towels (folded twice) with apple cider vinegar and a thick layer of baking soda to be very effective. I treated my husband's spider?/insect? bite with this. He had developed a large affected area with a black area in the middle and had been put on antibiotics. His symptoms were fever and chills, lack of appetite and he slept a lot. After I applied this poultice (pressed down on bite area until dry, a couple or more times a day), his symptoms disappeared and he recovered quickly.


2 User Reviews
5 star (2) 

Posted by Grace (Fairview, North Carolina) on 06/16/2009

Yes, we have used aspirin on spider bites and it really helps with the itching. It also seems to speed up healing, maybe due to its vasodilatory and anti-inflammatory effect.

Posted by Everett (Kitts Hill, OH) on 10/21/2006


Baking Soda

10 User Reviews
5 star (9) 
4 star (1) 

Posted by Peter ( Kelowna Bc) on 05/06/2015

The baking soda poultice worked very well on a spider bite on my wife's neck. Just overnight did the trick.

Replied by Kissa

How do I make baking soda poultice?

Replied by Mama To Many

Dear Kissa,

I just mix the baking soda with water until it is paste like and apply it to the bite. I cover that with some plastic wrap and then the top of a sock or cohesive tape. (Masking tape in a pinch! )

It is best to cover any part of the sting that is red and even beyond that area. I do a poultice overnight. During the day I change it once or twice.

~Mama to Many~

Replied by Timh
2063 posts

Lipospheric Vit-C + MSM may be more effective by itself or taken after DMSO. All these work very well together and maybe enough to safe off the worst in poisoning situations.

Many outdoor enthusiast carry along the MMS precursors in case of spider or snake bite. MMS is effective against most or all poisonous snakes & spiders if given immediately and on ever hrs until no more symptoms.

Baking Soda
Posted by Wanita (Las Cruces, New Mexico) on 12/09/2014

Thank You, I say hooray for baking soda!!!

I'm not sure about the kind of spider, I think I was bit in my storage unit moving things around. It first looked like a pimple and was very tender. I used "Prid" drawing ointment, but it got larger and so sore it woke me up . Then I used a green clay and Yerba Mansa poultice, it got bigger and still sore ... but began to swell into a boil. I took Ibuprofen and used some Benadryl gel on it ... no change. The center opened, but no distinct drainage noted and was the size of a quarter, so sore! And I had a low grade fever.

That's when I looked online, it had been 4 days of no improvement with my tried and true remedies for such things AND I had to go to work today (3 massage therapy clients) and had to get this under control ... too much to do, this is my right arm we're talking about .... eeeeeks!!!! ).

So I used the baking soda and oh how gorgeously effective it was. After three poultice applications and a good sleep, I awoke and have found the quarter sized boil to be painless, the redness smaller and no swelling. The inflammation is gathered centrally and the hole closed instead of open like an ulcer. When I had the 2nd poultice on it, it began to itch like crazy. I knew that was a good thing ... neuro-vascular activity no doubt!

I love you all! Thanks again, Earth Clinic is bookmarked in capital letters!


Baking Soda
Posted by Babsinbloom63 (Louisiana, US) on 11/18/2014

Two weeks ago I got bit on my upper back 3-4 times at my daughter's house in Texas by what we now know was a Wolf Spider. I had killed one earlier that morning in my daughter's kitchen as my daughter has a 3 month old baby and she was afraid the spider would get on the baby. That night I went to bed and woke up with a tingling, burning pain on my back which later started itching also. Then hard, swollen welts developed which quickly formed pimple like heads. I had a total of 4 of these all confined to a small area of my back. I put some neosporin and benadryl spray on them but that didn't seem to do much more than ease the itching for a short time. So I started researching what could have bitten me and came to the conclusion that it had to be the Wolf spider as my daughter and her husband just moved into their new home in Texas a few months ago and their home was built on a half acre lot that was a field and they have been having problems with spiders ever since they moved in.

Anyway, I was already on antibiotics for a tooth infection and the one I was on was one they give for spider bites (clindamyacin). I wasn't really getting any relief or healing from any of the things I tried so I did more research and found this site. I read about the baking soda poultice and remembered that my mom used to make a poultice from tobacco and baking soda when we were young and would get stung by wasps and bees and I know that worked. So for the past few days I have been making a baking soda poultice and having my husband apply it to the bites which I then leave on for at least an hour to an hour and a half. I could feel the very first poultice drawing pain out and that night I slept with no pain and no itching and in the morning the swelling, etc had gone down a great deal. And this morning after applying a poultice again yesterday, there is no swelling and the bites are healing.

I wish I could put the before and after pictures I had my husband take. There is tremendous difference using the baking soda poultice. I am making me a first aide kit with cigarette tobacco, baking soda, and benadryl tablets along with the gauze pads and tape I used to hold the poultice in place. If I get bit again I will use this from the start along with ice packs off and on. To think I might not have had to struggle with the pain and itching for two weeks if I would have tried this from the beginning, I would definitely recommend this to everyone.

Baking Soda
Posted by Christina (Boston) on 09/14/2013

Baking soda healed my spider bites beautifully and quickly!

I always read the remedies on this site but never took a moment to post my success. I've had such amazing results this past week with baking soda for my spider bites I wanted to share.

We must have spiders in the apartment- they might be hiding in the exposed brick. It's an older building in Boston.

I had tried "popping" spider bites a few times, not knowing what they were. (The tellltale red, raised bump with the white pinhead can resemble a pimple. ) I tried popping one on my leg above the knee and it swelled up to about 10x the size and looked more like a giant welt. This bite is still healing, from about 3 weeks ago.

Once I came on this website and saw the recommendation for baking soda, I resisted the urge to pop the unsightly pinhead, and applied a baking soda paste (baking soda mixed with water with the consistency of a toothpaste). I did this on a bite I got on my upper arm about a week ago. I applied the paste and covered the area with a bandaid (under my clothing for work). When I got home from work on Day 1, the bite swelling and redness had reduced significantly -and the white pinhead (that looks like puss) had raised on the surface of the skin and enlarged. I had an event that night and was discouraged because I wanted to wear a dress which would expose that area of the arm, and it looked like I had a giant zit on my arm.

I once again resisted the urge to pop (reminded by the slow healing of the bite on my leg) and instead applied more paste and covered with a bandaid. In the next few hours I lifted the bandaid and saw that the white stuff had popped on its own and begun to ooze out a bit, but had been absorbed by the dry paste. All on Day 1 of applying!

Over the next 2-3 days I continued to apply the baking soda paste and each day the appearance improved dramatically. I believe right now I am on Day 4 and the bite is non-existant in appearance and completely healed!! Amazing!

Meanwhile, the bite on my knee from 3 weeks ago is scabbed and healing slowly. Thanks so much earth clinic! I will use baking soda from now on!

Replied by Traci
(Galveston, Texas)

I have a spider bite on my arm but it never looked like a pimple at all. Looks like a small bite and was itching and now looks like a big red ring with white center that itches like crazy at times. Nothing is working will baking soda paste help? Need to get this itch gone.can't sleep for the past few days.

Replied by Mama To Many

Dear Traci, Are you sure it is a spider bite? What you are describing sounds more like a bulls eye rash that sometimes accompanies a tick bite. Baking soda paste might be helpful. Apple Cider Vinegar diluted 1/2 with water applied to the bite is also helpful. But if this is a bulls eye rash from a tick bite, you will want to treat also with some things internally because of the risk of Lyme Disease. (Turmeric, Colloidal Silver, Vitamin C.) ~Mama to Many~

Baking Soda
Posted by Jamie (Largo, Fl) on 05/06/2013

Two days with what I think is a spider bite. I had a dark crater the size of a penny and the swelling the size of a half dollar. Made a thick paste and had it cover the crater and red area. I then used a big adhesive band aid to cover it. After four hours, I looked at it and the selling went down to a quarter. But the crater is no longer a dark color, it's white. Also, it is no longer a crater. Meaning, it filled up no longer be crater. Reapplied baking soda. Waiting to see results later.

Replied by Missharvey73
(Seattle, Wa)

This sounds like a recluse bite. I lost 65% of my thumb... Go to the DR!!

Baking Soda
Posted by Jessica (Oakland, Ca) on 11/20/2011

I used the baking soda paste method on my spider bite and it helped to ease the swelling and it helped cool it down a little. I also iced it in between using the baking soda, which eased the discomfort. An over the counter pain killer also helped ease the pain.

Replied by Shawna
(San Diego)

What was the over the counter medicine used other than hydrocortizone? The antihistamin pill, icing, paste from baking soda or aspirin helps ease pain, itch, swelling, & redness. I have used it in 48 hrs so far, little pink is left, n still using daily cause still itchy.

Baking Soda
Posted by Greg (Leslie, Michigan) on 07/30/2010

I got bit three nights ago on the inside of my elbow by what appeared to be a spider. At first I thought it was a mosquito bite but it was uglier with a white spot on top. I squeezed it and tried hydrogen peroxide and witch hazel but they did nothing. Then I put anti-bacterial ointment on it but by the evening of the first day my arm ached and the welt had turned into a blister. The next day the blister was the size of a jelly bean and the redness and soreness was the size of two half-dollars. My understanding is that spider bites contain a virus. I called Urgent Care and they said to see a doctor the next day and put hot compresses on it until then. I asked if it was okay to put baking soda on it to draw out any toxins. She said Yes but only for 20 minutes. Instead, I made up a paste of plain baking soda and water to the consistency of toothpaste and put it on the bite until it dried. Then I brushed it off. I did this every two hours until I went to sleep: a total of four times. The next morning I woke up and the blister was half the size and the redness was almost gone. It's still a little sore but I will continue for another day. I expect it will be gone tomorrow.

Baking Soda
Posted by Jon (Lakeland, Florida) on 10/15/2008

I used a paste of baking soda on a spider bite on my leg and in two days the bite turned from black to red and faded away in little more than a week. It works!

Baking Soda
Posted by Mare (Auckland, New Zealand) on 02/21/2008

My daughters were playing outside in the garden and one after the other, they both started screaming, crying and running toward the house. I couldn't understand what had happened but they both had similar red marks on their skin. I assumed they had been bitten by spiders as there was no obvious sting. I quickly applied a thick paste of Baking Soda and water and within minutes both girls were calm and happy. Praise God for Baking Soda!

Baking Soda
Posted by MISTI (Killeen, TX) on 09/17/2007

My boyfriend recently got bitten by a spider which caused his hand to swell approx. 3 inches where the bite was at. After almost a week we decided to look into home remedies to heal it. One of his co-workers suggested using a baking soda paste: 3 parts baking soda 1 part water. A little while after he applied it the sore opened up and started oozing. I had read about the salt and garlic cure on this website so as soon as he came home we poured the salt on the wound, left it for about 20 minutes, rinsed and applied a fresh garlic clove overnight; kept this up for about a week and the bite has almost completely healed. All that is left is a small scab where the bite had once been an open wound about the size of a dime. Thanks for the home remedies!