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Sunburn-Treat, Home Remedy and Cure Sunburns

Sunburn is usually a first-degree burn that involves the outer surface of the skin. Sunburns are uncomfort­able but usually are not dangerous unless they are extensive. Severe sunburns can be serious in infants and small children.

Repeated sun exposure and sun­burns increase the risk of skin cancer.

Symptoms of Sunburns

The symptoms of sunburn include:

Change in skin color, ranging from pink to red and even purple

Skin feels hot to the touch



Fluid-filled blisters that may itch and eventually pop or break

Broken blisters peel to reveal even more tender skin beneath

Causes of Sunburns

Infants and children are especially sensitive to the burning effects of the sun.

People with fair skin are more likely to get sunburn. But even dark and black skin can burn and should be protected.

The sun's rays are strongest during the hours of 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The sun's rays are also stronger at higher altitudes and lower latitudes (closer to the tropics). Reflection off water, sand, or snow can intensify the sun's burning rays.

Sun lamps can cause severe sunburn.

Diagnosis of Sunburns

The doctor will direct the history of physical examination toward determination of the extent of burn and the possibility of other heat-related injuries like sunstroke. If only first-degree burns are found, prescription steroid lotion may be prescribed. This is not of particular benefit. The rare second-degree burns may be treated with antibiotics in addition to analgesics or sedation. There is no evidence that a steroid lotions or antibiotic creams help at all in the usual case of sunburn; most doctors prescribe the same therapy that is available at home.

Prevention of Sunburns

It is advisable to wear long-sleeved garments and wide-brimmed hats or use an umbrella when in the sun. Minimization of sun exposure between the hours of 10 am to 3 pm is also recommended.

Commercial preparations are available that block UV light, known as sunscreens. Sometimes called sun creams or sun blocks, they have a Sun Protection Factor (SPF) rating, based on the sun block's ability to reduce the UVB radiation at theskin: the higher the SPF rating, the greater the protection. A sunscreen rated SPF15 blocks 93.3% UVB and an SPF30 rated sunscreen blocks 96.7%. It is best to use a broad spectrum sunscreen in order to protect against both UVA and UVB radiation. It is prudent to use waterproof formulations if one plans to engage in water-based activities.

Sunscreen should have a SPF rating of at least 15. It should be applied half an hour before going out and reapplied every two hours thereafter.

Eyes should not be neglected, and wrap-around sunglasses which block UV light should also be worn.

Home Remedies for Sunburns

There are numerous topical skin products that can relieve the pain of sunburn and speed up the healing process. However, it is best advised never to cover sunburn that is blistered or open with any sort of cream, gel, or ointment as it may cause the wound to be infected.

The symptoms of milder sunburn can be treated with an antipruritic such as Calamine Lotion.

Regular white vinegar and apple cider vinegar have often been touted for their usefulness in treating sunburns and preventing blistering and peeling.

Other more unusual treatments involve the application of lavender oil, tea (cooled), yogurt, or cucumbers to the burnt skin.

Relief may be found by putting a cool, wet towel over the affected area.

Using tomato on the skin is a more painful way of treating the burn, but is mostly effective.

Ice provides immediate relief; however, once removed, discomfort may follow.

The common use of almond milk is particularly soothing to children.

A hot shower will also take the sting and the heat out of sunburn.

Vitamin E, one of the antioxidants, can be taken regularly as part of a daily vitamin and mineral supplement or spread as in an ointment on sunburn. Vitamin C is another antioxidant that will help prevent severe damage from sunburn and shorten its effects.Aloe Vera a healthful moisturizer is frequently used for sunburn and is applied to the affected areas of the skin as a rub to re-moisturize the dried and burnt surfaces. You can also purchase aloe Vera creams and ointments that may include other moisturizers or treatments for dry or burned skin.

Home Treatment for Sunburns

Drink plenty of water and watch for signs of dehydration (espe­cially in infants or children). Also watch for signs of heat exhaustion .

Cool baths or compresses can be very soothing.

A mild fever and headache can accompany sunburn.

Lie down in a cool, quiet room to relieve headache.

There is nothing you can do to prevent peeling; it is part of the healing process. Lotion can help relieve itching.

Call The Doctor Now

If you develop signs of heat stroke such as red, hot, dry skin, etc.

If the symptoms of heat exhaustion like dizziness, nausea, headache, etc. persists after you have cooled off.

If there is severe blistering with fever.

If you have fever of 38.9 degrees or higher.

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