It must be 'cause I'm so sweet
January 15, 2009 7:12 AM   Subscribe

What is biting me once a month?

About once a month since September, I've been getting a single bite in different places on my body (I've been bitten twice on my inner forearm, twice on the opposite hand, and once where the back of my neck meets my shoulder). The bites swell up and itch like crazy. Right now, I have a bite on my hand, and the swelling is about an inch and a half in diameter, with two red marks in the center about half a centimeter apart. There's no blistering or head on the bite. I've always first noticed the itching in the evening or at night, but obviously have never seen or felt anything while it's happening. The first couple of times it happened, I thought it might be something that bit me outdoors or at class, but class is over and I don't spend a lot of time outside now that it's gotten colder. I suppose it could be something at work, but it seems most likely that it's something in my house.

What the heck is biting me? And why only one bite once a month? When will it die and leave me in peace?
posted by amarynth to Pets & Animals (14 answers total)
Spider in or near your bed. That'd be my guess.
posted by ecorrocio at 7:50 AM on January 15, 2009

Sounds like a spider. If there is at least one in your house, chances are there are many.
posted by nikkorizz at 7:51 AM on January 15, 2009

Spiders in Maryland (pdf)
posted by pracowity at 8:05 AM on January 15, 2009

You sure it's not a recurrent MRSA infection?
posted by zeoslap at 8:12 AM on January 15, 2009

From that PDF, it looks like you've got a Yellow House Spider - quote
"The spiders enter homes in early fall and are active for several months weaving small white webs in confinded spaces where they spend the winter... These spiders can bite humans and cause a small irritating spot which may not heal for 8 to 10 days"
The fact that this little dude's other name is 'Aggressive House Spider' might be a good indication. Get a torch and check out the dark corners in your bedroom.
posted by Happy Dave at 8:14 AM on January 15, 2009

Here is a link regards spider/MRSA - you should go see a doc
posted by zeoslap at 8:14 AM on January 15, 2009

In fact this page has links to pics of spider bites/MRSA infections.
posted by zeoslap at 8:16 AM on January 15, 2009

nthing spider. Some people are insanely allergic to spider bites (I am one of them) and swell up like a baseball when we get them.
posted by rusty at 8:21 AM on January 15, 2009

I happen to have a picture of the spider Happy Dave quoted above, found in my own house.
Clicky if you aren't afraid of spiders.
posted by sanka at 9:24 AM on January 15, 2009

I tend to be a lot more reactive to allergens at certain times of the month. I've always suspected it was due to hormone changes over the month. Maybe you are being bitten more often than you suspect, but are only experiencing a reaction at one time of the month.

I would recommend getting a shop vac and very aggressively vacuuming your bed - including all around the frame, the mattress, between the mattress and springs and the frame under the springs (on top and underneath). If you have a headboard, also check between that and the wall - spiders love to live there.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 10:50 AM on January 15, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks, guys! What with the regular monthly bites, I was afraid it was a were-spider or something.

I'll check all around the bedroom, vacuum thoroughly, and hope my little buddy doesn't come back again next month.
posted by amarynth at 12:33 PM on January 15, 2009

Amarynth, zeoslap is right that it could be MRSA rather than spider bites, and right that the two things are commonly confused. Also note that you can get staph infections from insect bites. As this keeps reoccurring, whatever it is, I would urge you to ask your doctor for a prescription for Bactroban ointment (Mupirocin is the generic.) This is an antibiotic ointment you can use on the bites and it does work pretty well against MRSA/staph infections.
posted by gudrun at 1:10 PM on January 15, 2009

Spider with PMS?
posted by The otter lady at 8:15 PM on January 15, 2009

I happen to have a picture of the spider Happy Dave quoted above, found in my own house.
Clicky if you aren't afraid of spiders.

We had these spiders in a college dorm I used to live in, and they'd bite people.
posted by Modus Pwnens at 10:24 AM on January 16, 2009

« Older They got me for $20.00   |   How to get CNN to take down a page? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.