Newtownabbey mum 'unable to walk for weeks' after a spider bit her in bed
A Newtownabbey woman has said she suffered 'excruciating pain' and has been unable to walk for three weeks after she was bitten by a spider in bed.
Three weeks ago, Kelly Waring (39) was spending the night at her caravan in Ballywalter. When she woke up, she said her foot felt itchy and painful.
Later that day, she looked at her foot and noticed a red sore on the bottom. She said it became so painful that she wasn’t able to walk on it and her husband Neill took her straight to her GP in Glengormley the next day.
She said: “That night when I was going to bed, I thought my foot was really really sore and I realised it wasn’t just a scratch. The next morning I couldn’t put it on the floor and it was swollen. It was really bad.”
The mum-of-two said she was shocked when her doctor told her that she had been bitten by a spider.
“She examined my foot under a magnifying glass and she said she could tell it was a spider because there were two prongs. I was so shocked, I didn’t even ask what type of spider it was or anything.
“You hear about people getting bitten by spiders in Australia but not in Northern Ireland”, she said.
After her doctor prescribed antibiotics and strong painkillers, Kelly went home to rest but the bite continued to get more painful and was red and swollen.
On Sunday, she said she couldn’t stick the pain any longer and her husband took her to the Accident and Emergency department at the Mater Hospital.
“I felt like it was getting worse. I couldn’t stand on my foot almost a week later. My skin reacted so badly because of the infection”, she explained.
Although staff they wanted to admit her so she could receive IV antibiotics, Kelly was worried about leaving her two young children at home so they agreed to send her home with stronger antibiotics and crutches.
Three weeks on, Kelly said she is only starting to get back to normal. The bite has started to heal and she is getting back on her feet.
“It’s left a scar on my foot and I’m still taking the antibiotics but I am starting to weight bear on it.
“It’s been tough looking after my kids and trying to get around. My family have been a great help helping out with them but it’s been a tough few weeks.”
Kelly said she is now terrified of spiders, particularly around four-year-old Olivia and 18-month-old Ryan.
“It was really frightening,” she said, “I was never scared of them before. I would have gone and put them out of the room for others before but I’ve been back at the caravan for the first time this week. I’ve been checking the ceilings and the floors and everywhere because I’m so worried now.
“I don’t want to feel pain like that again. I’ve had two kids and that pain was worse. The only thing I’m glad of is that it happened to me and not the children. I want to warn people about what could happen and to be careful.”
With Autumn on the way, giant spiders are invading homes across Northern Ireland.
The end of August usually sees a huge increase in large house spiders as they start to look for a place to live over winter, and as it is mating season, male spiders are also on the hunt for females.