What I learned from my experiences with white tail spider bites.
The first white tail spider bite I had was in August 2017, as I was squeezing oranges. Red whelts started to appear very quickly on my hand and up my forearm from the site of the bite, which was on the top side of my right wrist.
There seems to be a fair bit of disinformation around about the bites. For some, it can cause harm. From what I know, it is not the actual white tail spider that is poisonous. It is what it eats that is poisonous to some humans. Here in Aotearoa, they eat the Daddy long legs spiders which then makes a white tail spider's bite toxic.
At the time that I was bitten, I had some chronic health issues that I was having difficulty healing. This would have meant that my immunity was not great. The first thing I did was spray a weak solution of hydrogen peroxide on it (3.5%). It foamed and fizzed and I went on a hunt for kawakawa leaves, a native plant of Aotearoa, known for it's anti-microbial properties.
It took me a while to find a bush. Once I had, I chewed the leaf and applied the chewed leaf with my saliva over it. I then used kawakawa leaves that had been steeped in boiling water to help draw out the toxins from the bite. The underside of the leaf is used for this purpose.
The next day I felt very ill and could not get out of bed, even for a drink of water. I rode out the symptoms, drifting into sleep and having a series of random chaotic visions. After a few hours, I managed to get up and get water and food. I made kawakawa tea over the next few days and sipped it throughout each day.
I don't believe I did enough, soon enough to stop the effects of the bite harming my body. Flesh decayed at the site of the bite and it was only a few days later, that I used raw manuka honey on it. It began to heal quickly then. However I was left with joint pain which indicates to me that my body had a higher level of inflammation than before.
The second bite was in August 2018. This time, my body was in serious condition. I had been hospitalised earlier in the year and struck down with what the doctors called viremia (multiple viruses). A hair analysis with bio feedback showed that a diverticulitis pocket in my intestines had spilled it contents. There were infections in my brain, lungs, kidneys and intestines as well.
During the year, I had positive medical results for parvovirus, shiga-toxin forming E-coli, anaemia, a repairing lung infection, and later the shingles virus and a dodgy liver. So, as you can see, I was not in great shape. My health was pretty perilous in truth, so I feared that a white tail spiders bite may just finish me off.
As soon as I felt the bite, I sprayed on a weak solution of hydrogen peroxide, went out to the garden and immediately chewed a kawakawa leaf and then applied it with raw manuka honey. I drank kawakawa tea throughout the day for a couple of days to help heal any rotting nasty stuff that could have come from the bite. There was still a little bit of rotting flesh, but I didn't notice further deterioration in my health at the time.
The third time was a near miss. This time I was still very ill and a white tail spider raised up it's tail and went in for the charge to jump on me and bite. At the time, I already had kawakawa leaves boiling in a pot and I managed to catch the spider and drown it in the sink.
I reckon it would be helpful to have a weak solution of hydrogen peroxide (3 - 3.5%) on hand just in case. I use it to wash some fruits (if fumigated) and vegetables if I am not sure they are spray free. Also, keeping some raw and active manuka honey on hand really helps. I am very fortunate to have many kawakawa bushes growing on the land where I am flatting at present.
Now I have made my own organic kawakawa healing balm, which would also help along with an application of manuka honey.
Poppy Joy, writing about health from my perspective.