Your skin can burn if it is exposed to too much sun without proper protection from sunscreen and clothes.To heal and soothe stinging skin, it’s important to treat a sunburn as soon as you notice it.The first step you should take is to get out of the sun—and preferably indoors.
Once indoors, these dermatologists’ tips can help relieve any discomfort you’re facing as a result of your sunburn:
Take cool baths or showers to help relieve the pain.
Once you get out of the bathtub or shower, gently pat yourself dry, but leave your skin a bit damp. Next, apply a moisturizer to help trap the water in your skin. This will help ease dryness.
Use a moisturizer that contains aloe vera or soy to help soothe sunburned skin.
If a particular area feels extra uncomfortable, you may want to apply a hydrocortisone cream which can be purchased without a prescription. Do not treat sunburn with “-caine” products (such as benzocaine), as these may irritate the skin or cause an allergic reaction.
Consider taking aspirin or ibuprofen.
This can help reduce any swelling, redness and discomfort.
Drink extra water.
A sunburn draws fluid to the skin’s surface and away from the rest of the body. Drinking water when you are sunburned helps prevent further dehydration.
If your skin blisters, allow the blisters to heal.
Blistering skin means you have a second-degree sunburn. Do not pop or interact with the blisters. Blisters form to help your skin heal and act as protection from infection.
Take extra care to protect sunburned skin while it heals.
Wear clothing that covers your skin when outdoors. Tightly-woven fabrics work best. Test the best fabrics by holding it up to a bright light — you shouldn’t see any light coming through.
Although sunburn’s — a result of skin receiving too much exposure from the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays — may seem like a temporary condition, it can cause long-lasting damage to the skin. This damage increases a person’s risk for getting skin cancer, making it critical to protect the skin from the sun. Even one blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles your chances of developing melanoma later in life.
For questions about your sunburn or to learn how to better protect your skin from the sun, talk to your dermatologist.
Savannah River Dermatology is located at 575 Furys Ferry Rd in Augusta, Ga. For appointments, product availability or other questions, our office can be reached at 706-691-7079.