Four days ago, i was bitten by something. I assume it was some sort of spider…but thankfully, not the kind that sends you to the E.R. with nausea and anaphylactic shock, and not the kind that rots a big hole in your skin like something out of a bad horror movie.
But toxic enough to be painful, cause swelling and prevent the use of my right hand for four days. The bubble that formed had the consistency of a water balloon. Then the bubble began to spread out the next day until my whole hand was swollen. It felt like i had pumped air up under my skin. I couldn’t make a fist, or even bend my fingers toward my palm until today– five days later.
I watched it closely and monitored my symptoms just in case, but it ran its course without becoming ugly. Part of the self-treatment i used along with extra strength Tylenol and cold compresses, was to apply minced garlic over the bite held in place by a bandage. I had some garlic i bought earlier for cooking. It comes in a jar with the garlic juice in it, too, and feels very soothing after taking it from the fridge, cold. I also used vinegar. Garlic is great for drawing out the toxins in a sting or bite. Vinegar takes the burning sensation away and helps soothe the discomfort. I used them both on my roommate when she was stung by a wasp–and she’s very allergic. But it prevented her from having a more severe reaction.
Now, moving on… No sooner had my hand begun to feel better, than i became the victim of another attack I was dipping dog food from the bag to feed Giz, and felt a sharp needle pain on my hand–yes,the already suffering, still-swollen hand. I saw that it was an ant. God knows what kind of ant. There are so many kinds. Maybe a Sugar Ant or a Oderous House Ant…or Pharaoh Ant, or a Fire Ant. Interesting thing about a Fire Ant–if one of them is killed violently, it lets off some kind of bio-alarm, and all their ant friends will come after you.
As i began to slap them off me, i saw that they were crawling onto my socked feet, up my legs, and were making their way up my arms, too. I ran to the sink and washed my hands and arms, and then smacked them off my legs and socks. I had felt about 20 needle sensations and knew i had been bitten about that many times. Luckily, i only found three spots that were immediately swelling up. (See photos). I again used a garlic compress and vinegar, and after an hour, the pustules went down. When i stopped using the garlic and vinegar, tough, the places began to spread out and get inflamed again. Then today, i discovered about 5 other bites that only swelled when they began to itch and i began to scratch them.
More than ever, i am looking forward to getting out of this buggy place. I’ve lived around insects all my life, and have never had this many injuries and difficulties from them. Mississippi Gulf Coast is just not the place for me.