One of the main reasons that people dislike spiders is the fear of a bite. Even though most spiders are completely harmless, we have been led to believe that spider bites are common and dangerous. The truth is that spiders are very beneficial bugs that do a lot to help control the insect population. With some basic information about how to control spiders within your home and how you can avoid spider bites, you need not fear them any more.
Spiders are not generally aggressive. They do not suck blood, so they have no reason to approach or seek out humans. In fact, most spiders actively try to avoid people and will live in dark, undisturbed areas. The majority of spider bites occur when spiders are surprised or threatened. If you can eliminate the majority of instances where this might happen, you have no need to worry about spiders. Let’s examine some effective tips that can help you avoid spider bites.
Seal the Exterior of Your Home
One of the best ways to avoid spider bites is to keep spiders from coming into your house. Sealing the exterior of your home is essential to keep out spiders and other types of pests. It is important to seal all cracks and gaps around the walls and foundation, ensure that window screens are present and in good working order, add sweeps or weather-stripping to all doors, and use fine mesh to cover larger openings like vents and chimneys.
Spiders like to live and build webs in secluded areas, so keeping your yard neatly trimmed and free of debris will attract less spiders and help you be able to see any that are there to avoid bites. Wood piles are favorite hiding places of many spiders. If you have a wood pile, keep it at least 20 feet away from the house and off the ground if possible. When stacking or moving the wood, make sure that you are wearing gloves in case you come into contact with a spider. Don’t allow your lawn, shrubs, and other vegetation to become overgrown. Tall grasses and unkempt yards will encourage spiders and make it more difficult to avoid them.
Wear Protective Clothing
Any time you are out in nature, it is a good idea to dress appropriately so that you can avoid problems. If you are doing things like gardening, mowing the lawn, rearranging storage items, or hiking, you should wear clothing that will protect you. Long pants, long-sleeved shirts, socks, closed toe shoes, and gloves are some things that may be beneficial in various outdoor activities and settings. Be on the lookout for spiders as you go about your activities, but if you do accidentally surprise one, your clothing can protect you from bites.
Avoid Leaving Things on the Floor
Inside homes, spider bites often happen when you stick your hand or foot into an area where a spider is living or hiding. Leaving shoes, gloves, clothes, blankets, etc. on the floor can lead to these unintended encounters with spiders. Try to store all of your clothes off the floor. If you will not need it for a long period of time, store it in sealed plastic containers. If you do find clothing or shoes on the floor, check them or shake them out before putting them on. Simple habits like these can help avoid spider bites.
Eliminate Their Food Sources
Spiders are extremely beneficial because they eat huge amounts of insects. Unfortunately, if you have a lot of insects around your yard or home, you will attract spiders and increase the likelihood of bites. One problem area for insects outside your home tends to be around outdoor lighting. The lights will attract the insects, which will then attract the spiders. To help with this problem, consider turning your porch lights off at night. If this is a safety concern, you can switch out your bright bulbs for “bug bulbs” in colors that have been shown to attract less insects. Inside the home, it is important to keep your home clean so that you can avoid insect infestations. Sweep and vacuum often, store food in sealed containers, and take out the trash regularly.
You can also help to eliminate potential food sources by performing regular pest control treatments to keep the insects at bay. These may include perimeter treatments, contact sprays, diatomaceous earth, and more. Harris products can help you control the insect population around your home, which will also help to eliminate spider problems.
For more information, check out Spiders: The Ultimate Guide.