Are Scorpions Harmful to Humans?

As you likely already know, scorpions are infamous in Arizona. These pests thrive in our much desired weather. Because they, like us, enjoy the sun and desert climate, they are known to be one of the most common pests in Arizona. If you or one of your family members encounters one of these crawling critters and happens to be stung, this may cause you some concern. We are going to review if scorpions are harmful to humans and what you should do if you stung by one of these pest.

What Are Scorpions?

Scorpions are predatory arachnids of the order Scorpiones. They have eight legs, and are easily recognized by a pair of grasping pincers and a narrow, segmented tail, often carried in a characteristic forward curve over the back and always ending with a stinger. Scorpions have a hard exoskeleton that allows them to live and survive in desert climates, much like we have here in Arizona.

Scorpions use their sting to capture prey and to defend themselves. They hunt at night and will not sting unless provoked or they feel threatened. All scorpions use their stings as a defense mechanism or a weapon to incapacitate prey. These pests can make their way into your home or business if they are seeking water and food. Scorpions like to live in tiny dark spaces, and can be hard to detect. Keeping your home free of scorpions is essential to your comfort and your health.

Are Scorpions Harmful to Humans?

The potency to humans of a scorpion sting varies, depending on the scorpion species. One thing that all scorpions have in common is that the sting possesses venom, which usually is neurotoxic in nature. As stated, all scorpions are venomous; however, most have a sting no worse than a bee sting, which is just painful and a nuisance. While scorpion stings are painful and likely something you want to avoid, they are rarely life-threatening. Young children and older adults are most at risk of serious complications.

Worldwide, only about 30 of the estimated 1,500 species of scorpions produce venom toxic enough to be fatal. But with more than a million scorpion stings taking place each year, deaths from these stings are a significant public health problem in areas where access to medical care is limited (Mayo Clinic).

In the United States, the bark scorpion is the only scorpion species with venom potent enough to cause severe symptoms. We do have bark scorpions in Arizona and their venomous sting can cause severe pain and be life-threatening. Symptoms of bark scorpion stings result in numbness or tingling, blurry vision and twitching muscles. For children, hyperactivity and erratic eye movement can manifest. When it comes to a bark scorpion sting, about 85% cause only local symptoms at the sting site, around 10% lead to painful shock waves in the same area as the sting, and less than 5% cause any serious symptoms.

What Should you do if you Encounter a Scorpion?

Because it is often difficult for the average person to tell the difference between each type of scorpion, you should treat all of these critters as though they are a bark scorpion. While scorpions may not be severely harmful to most humans, it’s hard to tell who will have what type of reaction and the sting can be extremely painful, much like a bee sting.

If scorpions have made their way into your Arizona home or business, they can be hard to detect. Scorpions typically do not leave signs, other than visual sightings of themselves. If you happen to see one or more of these stinging pest, call Bucksworth Home Services for help.

When it comes to pest control for your home, trust Bucksworth Home Services. We can help you make your home pest free, so that you can keep your family and your home safe. We believe you shouldn’t have to worry if a pest is coming back and you deserve to have your home protected.