You’re not alone if you’re horrified by seeing a spider in your bedroom. It is estimated that up 15% of the world’s population live with arachnophobia, and the bedroom is supposed to be our sanctuary.
Of the 4,000 spiders native to the USA, only five bite humans. However, if you’re afraid of spiders, an arachnid in your bedroom will likely make you feel unsafe and keep you from sleeping. In this case, the spider should be removed at once.
If spiders hold no fear for you, you can share your room in the short term. Spiders practically never approach humans, even while we sleep.
It could be argued that spiders maintain the ecosystem in your bedroom. A spider may prevent your bedroom from becoming overrun by preying on smaller bugs, such as mites. A spider may lay eggs in a bedroom if it gets too comfortable.
Spiders will remain in a bedroom as long as they feel safe. If you wish to keep spiders away while you sleep, keep your bedroom bright and tidy, seal up any cracks in walls or windows, and make liberal use of peppermint oil, as spiders hate the smell.
Is it Safe to Sleep with a Spider in the Room?
This depends on how comfortable you are sharing the room with a spider, as it’s unlikely to interact with you in any way while you sleep. If you’re unafraid of spiders and don’t wish to disturb them, you may prefer to adopt a “live and let live” policy.
There could even be an argument that a solitary spider in your bedroom is positive. Spiders feed on other, smaller bugs.
According to the Bulletin of the Entomological Society of America, spiders are the third most prominent phobia in the U.S., behind snakes and rats.
According to Anxiety Research, anybody can be afraid of spiders – it’s not a trait connected to distrust of other animals. However, Society and Animals speculates that a spider phobia is triggered by the “disgust” response and a fear of disease.
If you’re an arachnophobe, the presence of a spider will likely prevent you from sleeping soundly. Ergo, the spider should be removed from your bedroom before getting into bed.
How Long will a Spider Stay in Your Room?
A spider will stay in your room until you physically remove it or make the terrain inhospitable. Typically, spiders will be found in a bedroom for the following reasons.
- Clutter. Spiders love hiding places. If your bedroom is messy, a spider will have plenty of opportunities to mask its presence.
- Darkness. Spiders like corners where they won’t be disturbed, making closets a favored location.
- Warmth. Spiders come inside during the fall and winter when it is cold outside. Keeping your bedroom cool will aid sleep and deter spiders.
- Moisture. While spiders don’t like damp and moist conditions, much of their prey does. Spiders will gravitate to rooms where they’re likely to find a meal.
- Crumbs and food remnants. If they can’t find an insect to eat, spiders will make do with other food.
If you want to banish spiders from your bedroom, make the area unappealing and unwelcoming.
Will a Spider Lay Eggs in My Bedroom?
If a female spider feels safe in your bedroom and plans to remain in place, she could lay eggs.
Spiders can lay up to 300 eggs at a time. Even though the survival rate of spiderlings is low, that’s still a potential infestation that nobody wants.
Spider eggs can be dealt with by sucking them up with a vacuum cleaner or calling a professional exterminator. The latter is the safer option, as there may be more nests in the home.
Never attempt to remove a nest of spider eggs by hand. You’ll likely be bitten if the egg-laying spider is of a venomous breed and close by.
Identifying Dangerous Spiders
Over 4,000 species of spider are believed to be found in the USA, but just five will bite humans. The spiders to be wary of are as follows:
|Brown Recluse||The violin-shaped marking behind its eyes identifies this spider. This earns the Brown Recluse another name, Fiddler Spider. Brown Recluse spiders aren’t outright aggressive but will bite if disturbed.|
|Black Widow||The Black Widow is identified by a red hourglass marking on its abdomen. On a like-for-like basis, this spider’s venom is 15 times stronger than a rattlesnake’s. Black Widow spiders are most active in spring and bite if threatened or a nest of eggs is disturbed.|
|Hobo Spider||Hobo spiders are known as Aggressive House Spiders, as they’re quick to bite and are as small as a harmless house spider. This spider is brown with yellow markings.|
|Wolf Spider||Wolf spiders are an arachnophobe’s nightmare – over an inch long, covered in hair, and lightning fast. Thankfully they rarely venture indoors, and their bite, while painful, isn’t usually life-threatening.|
|Yellow Sac Spider||Identifiable by a yellow sac found on its underbelly, this spider may hide in clothing and bite when startled, such as when you get dressed. They’re the most active biters on our list, but their venom is mild.|
A spider bite will initially feel akin to an insect sting, so the skin will be sore to the touch and will swell. Spider venom can cause necrosis, so if you suspect you have been bitten, head to the ER.
Unless the spider in your bedroom falls under these categories, it’ll be harmless and frightened by your presence. There’s no need to be afraid, but you may still want to remove the spider before it lays eggs.
Safely Removing a Spider from a Bedroom
Call a pest control expert if you have any reason to believe the spider in your bedroom is dangerous. Safely trap the spider in place if you can, but don’t try to kill it. Spiders bite if they feel threatened.
If you’re looking at a common house spider, resist the urge to swat it with a shoe or newspaper. It’s easy to erroneously attack a Hobo spider or Brown Recluse and be bitten for your trouble.
Trap the spider in a glass or bowl and take it outside, or chase it out of your bedroom with a flashlight. Shining a beam directly into a spider will usually frighten it into moving.
Will a Spider Crawl on Me in My Sleep?
It’s a cliché to say that spiders are more afraid of us than we are of them, but it’s true.
Spiders will do all they can to avoid directly interacting with humans. Spiders will only crawl on human skin if they feel a reward is in the offing that supersedes the risk.
We need to remember that spiders aren’t aggressive for no reason. If a spider ends up in your bed at night, it’ll be looking for food it could not find elsewhere.
In some rare cases, a spider may be attracted by the warmth a human body emits, but this will rarely supersede self-preservation. The moment a spider gets too close to a human, it’ll likely lose its nerve and flee, even if it smells food.
If you regularly find spiders in your bed at night, wash the sheets. Something about your bed is attracting spiders, despite your presence.
Will I Swallow a Spider in My Sleep?
A spider is extremely unlikely to approach your mouth while you’re sleeping.
As discussed, spiders aren’t keen to approach humans, so it would take an extremely brave spider to get close enough to be swallowed. Even if a spider is drawn to your bed – perhaps you have left crumbs of food on the sheets – your presence will quickly deter it.
Spiders detect noises through vibration receptors on their eight legs. Every noise you make will set off these receptors and be marked as a potential threat.
If you roll over in your sleep, spiders will sense this and run away to avoid being crushed. Spiders will notice the change in the atmosphere and respond if you breathe heavily. Although you can’t hear yourself snoring, the sound will be excessive to a spider’s acute sense of hearing.
Imagine an unlikely turn of events where a spider drops from the ceiling straight into your open mouth and down your throat before you know it. The chances of this happening once are slim.
Even if you swallow a spider, your body will process, digest, and eliminate it as waste.
How to Protect Yourself from Spiders While Sleeping
If you’re still concerned about spiders in your room while sleeping, take these precautions to keep arachnids at bay:
- Keep your room clutter-free. Dust regularly, and don’t allow waste bins to linger or glasses of water or cold coffee to stagnate.
- Open your windows and leave the lights on. Spiders will look for a dark place to hide from the sun.
- Get an electric pest repellent that creates ultrasonic waves to keep spiders away.
- Never eat in the bedroom, especially in bed. You may think the crumbs you sweep aside are insignificant, but they’ll attract spiders.
- Turn on the A.C. Spiders have no interest in setting up a home in a cold and draughty environment.
- Apply peppermint oil to your pillows and blankets, or use a peppermint reed diffuser. Spiders hate this aroma and will steer clear.
- Place a riser between your bed and the floor, and move your headboard away from the wall. This makes it harder to spiders to reach you.
- Block any nooks and crannies you find in walls and windows with sealant.
- Sleep with a pet. Dogs and cats have a high hunting drive and will automatically chase spiders, while the spiders themselves will not dare approach your animals.
Above all, keep your bedroom tidy. The more frequently you deep clean a bedroom, including laundering the blankets, the less likely spiders will stick around in your bedroom.
While arachnophobia is a common concern, it shouldn’t prevent you from sleeping. If you find a spider in your bedroom at night, safely remove it.