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Treating Brown Recluse Spider Bite Naturally

“Mommy, my leg hurts!”

spider bite

It was seven in the morning. My little boy, seven years old, had just come out of bed, and complained of a sore on his leg. I unzipped his footed pajamas, and found a tiny clear blister on his lower leg.

brown recluse spider bite

I will be honest. Even though the blister was small, my nurse gear kicked in immediately when I saw the hazy circle surrounding the blister, then the red ring. With the pain, the blister, and the concentric rings, I began right away to suspect a brown recluse spider bite. I believe that God put this in my mind, so that we could snap into action quickly, because my mind would not normally go right away to spider bite on seeing such a small bump.

Brown Recluse Spider Bite

Brown recluse spider bite
Brown Recluse Spider. photo Wikipedia

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Once I began to suspect a spider bite, I assumed it would be the Brown Recluse. We had a neighbor who had also been bitten by a Brown Recluse just the month or so before, so I immediately called her. She came over right away to look at the bite. By that time, the blister had already grown, maybe to the size of half a pencil eraser, but was still clear. She told me that the symptoms sounded like when she got bit, but that hers had turned cloudy, so watch for that. In her case, she had gone to the ER, but while treated with antibiotics for possible secondary infections, they really had no specific kind of treatment for a Brown Recluse Spider bite. She had to seek out her own treatment options outside of the medical community.

As soon as I saw the blister, we put on a charcoal poultice.

If you do not know what a poultice is, please see this post. It also shows you step by step, how to make a good activated charcoal poultice.

Note that I recently updated this link and article, which had previously been a dead link to my old blog. The blog post shows you step by step how to make an easy charcoal poultice.

How to make a neat charcoal poultice

So, what’s the charcoal for anyway?

If you do not know about Activated Charcoal, now is a good time to learn! Activated Charcoal is a very cheap, simple remedy that you should keep on hand at all times. Keep a small jar in your car, your medicine kit, first aid supplies, and especially around your home.

Charcoal powder has the wonderful property of being able to cling to toxins in your body, internally or externally, adsorbing them, and allowing them to be eliminated. I highly, highly recommend the book, Charcoal Remedies.com. You will find tons of real-life stories of people who have used activated charcoal for various ailments. The corresponding website is just as helpful. CharcoalRemedies.com Here, you can learn all about the properties of activated charcoal.

My Source

By the way, I like to get my charcoal powder here (updated link). It is made from coconut hulls. Be sure to find out what your charcoal is made from, because you don’t want some from bones! Eww! This is the good kind for making poultices.

To take it internally, you can use the powder, but tablets are often more convenient. We use them when we travel and for canker sores. Note that TABLETS, not Capsules, are best for dissolving slowly in your mouth. They are harder to find, but I prefer them because they are more versatile. Nothing wrong with capsules, however. Recently, we bought another brand, and when we tried them, found that they contained icing sugar! Not what I want in a charcoal capsule! Here’s a link to the plain Charcoal tablets off Amazon.com. Activated Charcoal TABLETS

I ordered some today. We were almost out, plus I need to send some with my son to Peru. Maybe sometime I will tell you how useful activated charcoal is while traveling, especially in second and third world countries. Is it a coincidence that the majority of the good water filters and purifiers use carbon (charcoal)? I don’t think so.

Back to the Brown Recluse Spider Bite…

So…within five minutes of finding the brown recluse spider bite, we had the charcoal on. This provided pain relief, and began to draw out the toxins.

I believe that we caught the bite just after it occurred, otherwise it would have grown much larger while my son slept. The brown recluse spider apparently had crawled inside the zippered, footed PJs, and when he rolled over or something, it bit him.

We kept the poultice on for 10-15 minutes, then changed it. We took this very seriously, because I have seen the awful damage that a Brown Recluse Spider bite can cause to the flesh. If you have any doubt, just do a quick Google search, but prepare to be revolted at pictures of rotting flesh and deep tissue ulcers.

Day 1

So…charcoal poultice on for 10-15 mins, then change. Do this all day long, even though it’s inconvenient. You want to change so frequently because you want maximum drawing power of the charcoal. You really want to get those toxins out!

Brown Recluse Spider venom is based on proteins. These proteins can cause major tissue necrosis (death) and gangrene as the surrounding areas try to localize the toxin from spreading to other areas of the body. The cascade of effects from a spider bite is beyond the scope of this article, but the main point is that if uninterrupted, the wound can get really nasty.

The charcoal, applied frequently, helps prevent the toxin from spreading, and it really helps to relieve the pain of the bite. On the charcoal changes, when I took off the old poultice, to apply a new, within just a couple of minutes, my son complained of increased pain, and wanted the charcoal back on. At times during the day, I would leave the bite open to the air briefly, so that he’d not have the wet poultice on continually, but he let me know for sure when to put it back on.

Day 2

We treated the bite like this for the first day, then changed the poultice less frequently the next day, but still at least every hour or two. I did add some goldenseal powder sprinkled on the top, just for good measure, as goldenseal is a natural antibiotic.

I did not take a lot of pictures. I did not plan to do a photo documentary of this, we were just treating the bite. The first two days were rather intense, and I didn’t even think of pictures. But by the end of the second day, we had a larger blister, it looked milky, but the redness was well-controlled.

Brown Recluse spider Bite
Day 2

Days 3-6

For the next four days, treatment was the same–charcoal every two hours, let open to air for 10 minutes or so between. We also added hydrotherapy once the blister broke, which happened somewhere around the third day. Initially, I didn’t want to put any heat on, for fear of spreading the toxins, but once the first few days had passed, my goal was to increase the circulation to the area so that the immune system could do its thing. Hot brings increased blood to the area, brief sessions of cold constrict the blood vessels and serve to squeeze the blood back into circulation, which keeps the blood moving!

At day 6, we had a flat wound, which had begun to ulcerate a little. We had pinkness, but it did not look angry and infected.

Brown Recluse Spider Bite
Day 6

Day 9

By day nine, we had further ulceration, but virtually no redness. Pain had lessened, but we still had some. Charcoal and goldenseal, plus hot/cold continued. When I look at his little leg, it makes my heart glad that it was healing!

Brown Recluse Spider Bite pictures wound
Day 9

Day 16

I will say that I kept in regular contact with our natural healing consultant, who advised me when I needed intervention. Whenever I had doubt, I gave him a call.

By day 16, we could see good evidence of the ulcer closing. It had decreased in size, and there was almost no redness. I knew we were winning the battle. Again, if you doubt the power of the Brown Recluse Spider bite, just Google it. For some reason, I don’t have a desire to put a really gross picture on my blog.

Brown Recluse Spider bite, wound closing
Day 16

Once healed, I again forgot to take a picture, but you can barely even see a little scar now.

This is just one story, but I’d encourage you to keep charcoal in mind, especially for any kind of bite or sting. In case you need more encouragement on the benefits of charcoal, I will direct you to a story of some friends we have who live in Chad, Africa. These friends also use activated charcoal, among other things, for scorpion stings. The scorpions and snakes in Africa are the real deal—some bites from these animals are deadly.

This is from their ministry newsletter, which can be read here. Story used with permission.

2011 July 10
Dear readers,
I’d like to share a short story about a neighbor boy who survived a bite from a Sand Viper.

One morning, I walked out to talk with our head mason for the wall project, but he was not there. “He want out to the field,” the other workers said, “because his son was bitten by a poisonous snake.”

“When did he get bitten?” I asked.

“An hour or two ago,” they said.

I wondered what kind of a snake it was, how much poison was injected, and how the boy was doing.

I went back to the house and referenced the Village Medical Manual on snakebites for any ideas. We gathered charcoal and bandages. I took off to grab a worker to show me the way to the field. Just then I learned that the boy was already at home. So I went to the mason’s home and found the boy, maybe 18 years old, moaning on a mat with concerned people all around. They had made a tree-fiber tourniquet. There was no rush, no sense of urgency, just a feeling of “Oh well, we’ll see if he lives or dies.”

In this culture, the belief is that if you die of snakebite, you must have had unforgiven sins. Thus, a snakebite will often force at least a confession of wrong from the victim.

We prayed a short prayer for God to intervene and to save this man’s life. Probably two hours had passed since the bite, yet I applied charcoal to the region of the bite anyway. Then we proceeded to apply the vicious current of the motorbike spark-plug coil to his leg. The lead wasn’t long enough, so I straightened a metal bucket handle to extend the distance a bit. The poor boy could hardly handle the pain of the shock, but a correct application of this technique has saved many lives around the world, depending on the type of snake. We prayed that God would reward our efforts.

From there we proceeded to the hospital where the boy was given a generic anti-venom. Generally it is better to identify the snake and apply the specific anti-venom. But this is all the hospital had, so we tried it.

By evening, the man still had some symptoms (soreness, headache, etc), but was gradually feeling better. But the next day, he was fine to go home. Not long thereafter, he returned to the fields to work.
The locals say this was a Sand Viper. I have seen and killed a number of these small, but beautiful snakes. They are black and white and gray and brown, sort of in a plaid pattern. They are also deadly snakes. Whether or not this boy got the full dose of venom I know not, but I know the pain he was experiencing and observed some symptoms of poisoning. In any case, I believe that God answered our prayers for healing and that He honored our efforts. We did everything within our own power and knowledge and He supplied the rest. Praise Him!

Desert Tree Ministry

There you have it! A few circumstances where activated charcoal can be used. Check out the charcoal remedies website for a lot more information and stories. I don’t get compensation for referring you. Just like to pass the helpful information along!

We always try to treat any illness with natural remedies first. Many times these are all that is needed. This article shares a few of our favorites. .

Get your charcoal now! Don’t be wait for the emergency and wish you had!


Resources Referenced in this Article

Affiliate links provided.




BOOK Charcoal Remedies.com

More posts you may find useful on health at home:

Rocket Fuel–Homestead Recipes

Natural Remedies for Cold and Flu Season

Low Sugar Elderberry Immune Syrup Recipe

21 Replies

    1. All the stuff you did made no difference whatsoever. The progress of the recluse bite was average and pretty much textbook for that.

      All the “natural healing” happy talk is exactly that; and has the danger that people begin to think there’s a “natural” cure for everything. Meaning anything that sounds good and – most importantly – is NOT supported by any medical research.

      Your son needed to see a real doctor, who couldn’t have stopped the bite progression but could have helped ensure no secondary infection. Fortunately, there wasn’t one anyway. You were just lucky.

  1. Laurie, this is SO interesting. My husband had a bite on his stomach a couple of months ago that we assumed was from a blister beetle. We had been out in the woods cutting fallen trees for firewood which made us think he had squished one of the beetles carrying logs. But, your pictures here look remarkably similar to what he had. Especially the progression. At the time we realized he had just one giant blister as opposed to the semi cluster from the blister beetle but chalked it up to the soft skin it was on. Brown recluse didn’t even occur to me but this makes me think that may be what it was. I’m going to have to remember to show these pics to him! Thank you for sharing this on the hop!

    1. I am SO glad to share! A brown Recluse Bite is nasty and PAINFUL! If anyone can be helped, I am super glad that I’ve shared!

      And charcoal is a cheap remedy to have on hand at all times! Many a yellow jacket sting and GI upset have met their match with activated charcoal here at at our homestead!

      Best of wishes as you stay safe with the farm chores!

  2. Yikes! Great information! My hubby and two daughters have had brown recluse bites, and they are no joke! Glad to know there is a natural way to heal them!

  3. Laurie, thanks for sharing this even though I’d rather not think about things that bite, especially, snakes and spiders. But it’s important to know these things in advance so we are better prepared to deal with them. I grew up in Florida long before Disney came to town and there was still a lot of land being cleared around Orlando. So, I have a healthy fear of snakes and alligators. But I have heard stories about Brown Recluse bites here in Texas and know they can be very nasty!

What is your experience? 💜 I read every comment, and so many times I find that I gain encouragement from what’s shared. ❤️