Scorpions

Latest update: - Authors: Mieke Croughs, Ula Maniewski-Kelner

There are more than one thousand species of scorpions. They are all poisonous, but only a few species cause serious  health problems.

Scorpions live mainly in arid regions and are active at night. They usually fluoresce a green colour under UV light.

A scorpion sting is painful and is usually accompanied by local redness and swelling. Sometimes general symptoms such as fatigue, anxiety, feeling of weakness and restlessness can also occur. Severe and sometimes fatal symptoms can occur in young children, older people and people with health conditions.

Risk areas

Deadly scorpions are found mainly in Mexico, Brazil, Trinidad, North Africa, South Africa, the Middle East and India.

Prevention

Pay close attention

Pay close attention to where you walk, particularly at night and wear sturdy, high walkingshoes when taking a walk.

Never place your bare hands or feet in crevices or between rocks where scorpions could be hiding.

Use a UV lamp at night to detect scorpions.

Sleeping and clothing

Check for scorpions between sheets and blankets and in the toilet.

Shake out your shoes and clothes before putting them on in the morning.

Rubbish

Do not leave food or rubbish lying around. This attracts insects, which in turn can attract scorpions.

In case of symptoms

Have you been stung by a scorpion?

Seek medical advice if you suffer any symptoms, particularly for children, elderly people and people with underlying heart or lung problems.

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