The hype surrounding the brown recluse spider is actually quite humorous. You’d think this spider was Chuck Norris, the way people talk about it. They don’t call it a “recluse” for nothing. This spider does not like hanging out anywhere near people. If it is in your home, there is a good chance you’ve been gone for awhile, or you left an article of clothing outside on the deck. Victims of brown recluse bites usually bring these spiders into contact with their own body. If you are worried about getting bitten by a brown recluse, shake your shoes and clothing before you put them on, and slide your covers all the way down before you get into bed. That will be more than enough protection against these rare spiders.

Another spider that gets a lot of hype is the dreaded black widow. If you could see my hands right now, you’d see that I’m wiggling my fingers in the air, for effect. Black widows don’t want to bite you. You freak them out. Seriously. Black widows bite for the same reason brown recluse do, they crawl into your clothes, shoes, or bedding, and you climb in there after them. That isn’t to say that they won’t crawl into bed with you while you’re sleeping, but it’s just not very common.

The spider you should be worried about is the common house spider. These bad boys love living with you. And, although they are timid, they have no problem crawling all over you while you’re sleeping. And, they bite. Sure, their bites aren’t horrible, but they can itch for quite a while, especially if you keep scratching the bite area. So, cut it out. You’re going to make a scab.

In New Jersey, we’re pretty tough. Most of us can sustain a hundred spider bites a night without batting a lash. But after a while that gets old. So how about we keep the spiders outside? Makes sense?

Keeping those spiders out is easier than you think.

  • Seal up gaps with a caulking gun.
  • Check all your screens.
  • Inspect your door sweeps and weather stripping, to make sure they are sealing properly.
  • Replace white exterior bulbs with yellow bulbs, to reduce flying insects, which are food for spiders.
  • Keep wood piles away from the house.
  • Have a professional spray your exterior walls, and advise you on common-sense practices that can keep spiders from targeting your home.

When it comes to those dangerous spiders, you don’t have too much to worry about. But common house spiders are a plague. Follow these easy tips, and you won’t have any unwanted spiders crawling on your bed at night.