Sunny days in San Diego, California mean ample exposure with the sun. Unfortunately, prolonged exposure, or lack of good sunscreens, can cause a nasty sunburn. When you get a sunburn, your skin turns red and hurts. If the burn is severe, you can develop swelling and sunburn You may even feel like you have the flu — feverish, with chills, nausea, headache, and weakness. A few days later, your skin will start peeling and itching as your body tries to rid itself of sun-damaged cells.
If the unfortunate occurs, and you do experience a sunburn, what can one do to create sunburn relief?
1. If systemic symptoms (fever, chills, flu-like symptoms) are present, seek medical attention. A dermatologist or in extreme cases ER visit may be in order.
2. See a dermatologist! We can suggest prescription strength topicals to soothe the skin, and LED light treatment such as Lutronic Healight II may be extremely helpful in the first 24-48 hours to help with the inflammation associated with the sunburn.
3. Prevent it! Use broad spectrum sunscreen, take an oral anti-oxidant supplement such as Heliocare, wear sun protective clothing, seek shade, and avoid peak hours of sun exposure.
4. Try some remedies at home. Here is more on that in the YouTube video and tips listed below:
Home Remedies for Sunburn
- Just like cold compresses, soaked in water, also Green Tea successfully mitigates the effects of sunburns as it has an anti-inflammatory activity. Prepare the tea and let it cool, then put a cold compresses to the burned part of your body. Your skin will be soothed and the burning sensation will disappear. You can apply to skin using a cloth or simply use the wet tea bags as compresses.
- Soak in an oatmeal bath. This is especially helpful for itchy sunburned skin. The polysaccharides in oatmeal will coat and heal your skin, while the water cools you down and keeps your skin hydrated and moist.Fill a clean cotton tube sock or a coffee filter bag with uncooked oatmeal and tie off the top. Run a bath full of tepid water. Toss in the sock and let it soak for a few minutes before getting in the tub.
- Not only is a cool cucumber soothing to the burn simply because it’s cool, but its antioxidant and analgesic properties promote healing and further relief from discomfort. You can apply it in a couple of ways:
- For quick pain relief, slice up a chilled cucumber and lay the slices on your burned skin. Flip the slices when the first side heats up.
- For a longer lasting effect, chill 1 or 2 cucumbers and toss them in a blender to create a paste. Add some aloe vera gel if you want it a little thicker.
- Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory meds that reduce skin inflammation and the chance of serious cell damage are a good way to easy the pain.
- Steer clear of any lotion that contains alcohol. The ingredient can actually dry out your already burned and dry skin. Rich emollient topical moisturizing creams such as those that contain antioxidants, ceramides, or hyaluronic acid are great choices.
- The sun sucks the hydration out of your entire body—skin included. Continue to drink as much as necessary after you notice the burn, even if you’re not thirsty.