A Natural Brown Recluse Remedy That Works
with activated charcoal
After graduate school, I had a plan.
I was going to move back to California and look into receiving further certification in either herbalism or naturopathy. Perhaps do something with all the plant chemistry knowledge I had to help people or heal the earth, I didn't know.
I'd already been spending a lot of time learning about pollution and how it affects mother earth, the soil, and the entire ecosystem in which it circulates and I figured it was then time to learn more about the earth's creatures and how they handled and cycled out pollutants.
But that never happened . . . not officially anyway.
Because around this same time, my readings business blew up, then one thing led to another and now I have this website.
Meanwhile, as this whole site flourished, I learned how to teach others about my family gifts, and I took a break from doing plant science work on the outside. But in the background, I've still been doing my fair level of secret plant science chemistry experiments.
Mostly on myself, but my partner David has also been victim.
In most of these experiments, I just take what I know about plant chemistry, oxidation, nutrition, and common antioxidant interactions, and then apply it to health and healing.
Basically, I have been getting another Master's Degree just from futzing around in my kitchen and recording the results.
I'm sharing with you this recipe today because not only is it my prize healing gem, but also because its life-saving.
Brown recluse bites, if they become infected and if the venom penetrates deep enough through the tissue, the necrotic tissue that gets eaten away can't compensate for all that's left - and amputations or more serious complications can occur.
Being an outdoorsy girl myself, I'm actually bit by venomous critters quite a lot (how do you guys think I ground after all my readings?!).
Anyway, while these bites have been great in terms of learning lessons (I've changed some of my tactics because of them) like I now stack wood with gloves - sometimes getting a bite is just unavoidable.
Spider bites happen when and where you least expect them to, and because of this, dealing with them is commonly taught in wilderness medicine responder training classes.
Which I've taken. Because, wilderness.
So this brings us to last spring, when I was staying at an old victorian monastery and was given an opportunity to dig my wilderness medicine healing tools out of my tool-belt.
I woke up in the morning after a restful night's sleep with a red, tingling wound on my finger that grew and grew throughout the day, eventually becoming a multiple pocketed blister that looked like it was going to explode. It was excruciating and I knew exactly what it was.
Hello, my old friend, Brown Recluse.
These are all classic symptoms of a Brown Recluse Bite:
- Because Brown Recluse (BR) spiders like dark areas, most people who get bit don't actually see the bite happen, but they feel the tell-tale tingle.
-Most BR bites are diagnosed by the location where you got the bite and the symptoms you receive post bite.
- BR bite symptoms tend to escalate fast within the first 24 hours, getting to their worst by 72 hours.
- Telltale signs are tingly sensations at the bite wound, a gradual increase in the size of wound and blisters during the first 24 hours, eventually leading to a volcano stage (where the wound explodes on you). This is all associated with tingling and intense, escalating pain, leading up to the explosion of the wound.
- To save a bite, you usually want to catch it before it gets to explosion stage, but this can be hard because . . .
- The ER will not take BR wounds until/unless an infection occurs, an infection which usually sets in after volcano stage, since this is the stage that signals the start of necrosis.
Don't want to wait until infection may or may not set in and you may or may not lose a finger?
I don't either!
When you get proactive about a wound, it has more of a chance of healing without a trip to the ER and less of a chance you'll ever have to go.
So here's what I do (and always do) to heal any and all venomous wounds, including BR bites, starting within the first 24 hours of impact, or as soon as possible.
Brown Recluse Bite Remedy*
- Activated Charcoal, in break apart capsules or powder (capsules available at the 24 hour CVS)
- Echinacea Tincture (available at local health food store or Amazon.com)
- Colloidal Silver, liquid (available at local health food store or Amazon.com)
- Water, for substituting
- Paper Towel
- Cling Wrap
- Turmeric Tablets (available at local health food store or Amazon.com)
*good for puncture wounds from coming poisonous plants and other insects, too.
Step by Step:
Before you begin, take off any and all jewelry in and around the bite wound.
If you don't and swelling does occur, someone may be cutting it off you later.
Okay rings off? Let's go:
1. Take 2-3 capsules of Activated Charcoal (for pulling out the toxin) and empty them into a non-porous bowl.
If you don't have either, substitute with water until you can obtain one or both of the liquids used in the paste. Most important part is to initiate toxin pull out in the first phase of healing - which is the charcoal. The liquids selected help with the body's reaction to the toxin. Ideally, you want both actions going on - something removing the toxin and something helping to support your body's reaction to the toxin - for best results.
3. Now apply the paste to a dry paper towel folded up and wrap around the wound, adhering with saran wrap.
Do this only first few times (application with paper towel and saran wrap) to make sure you get the entire wound and surrounding area, then after 2-3 days, you can switch to using a regular bandaid as the wound shrinks, if you like.
4. Repeat the first three steps 2-3 times per day during the first three days, washing the wound with soap and water in between application, then reapplying with a fresh poultice every time.
Make sure to get all the black off your finger and out of the wound between cleanings. Soap and water is fine.
5. Once you've gotten to day 3 or 4, or once you've noticed the wound starting to heal, look less inflamed, and begins to close (whichever comes first), apply the medicined bandage only once a day, preferably overnight, leaving the wound open during the day to breathe.
6. Repeat the daily application of the paste and bandage process until the wound heals, which should be about 7-10 days (see pictures below).
For even better results: supplement the topical application of this activated charcoal poultice with:
- Internally taking 2-3 Turmeric Tablets, 2-3 times a day for the first 3 days and then backing down to 2-3 tablets a day for the remaining 7 days.
- A daily internal dose of Echinacea Tincture.
So without further ado, let's see the results from my most recent verified bite.
The Final Results of the Activated Charcoal Remedy:
Looks good right?
These photos were taken from my last run in with the spider and yes, there was a blister stage and a volcano stage. The first photo - Day 1 - is actually from 36 hours after the first signs of bite impact - so it's really midway between day 1-2 - because I wanted to wait until after the volcano stage to take a picture.
If your wound is blistering, DO NOT PUT HEAT ON IT to express the blister. Already done this? Relax. Just stop doing it right now, ice it to stop the reaction, then go get these ingredients! Heat will spread the venom deeper into the tissue. I do suggest cutting open the wound and expressing it in a gentle sterile manner, though, as much as you can, so the paste can do it's work.
Now for my last word . . . I know some people have had success with applying dry clay to the wound rather than charcoal to perform a similar function (extracting the moisture). I haven't tried this, and because this method has worked so well for me and my family, that's one remedy I can't speak for as of yet.
Amanda Linette Meder
Just out of precaution, here's how to know it's time to go to the ER:
Draw a black circle around the initial wound with a magic marker and keep it there for 72 hours. If the wound boundary extends beyond your original marking, this is a sign the infection is expanding and it's time to upgrade to antibiotic treatment. But if you start the above treatment before any of this happens, you'll likely never have to get to this point.
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Amanda Linette Meder is a psychic medium with a love for horticulture, natural healing, and health. She shares her insights on the spirit world, on home herbal health and life in between both here and on her Instagram Account. Find her on IG >>>