Sunburn… Ouch!

Summer and the sun. It goes hand and hand. Now that summer’s here, it’s time to hit the fun spots like the beach or park. When you’re having fun in the sun, you may forgot to put on sunblock or sunscreen. As a result, you’re now suffering from a sunburn. When the sun starts heating up, our skin is naturally prone to burn. UV exposure can cause skin to age quickly and trigger skin cancer. Those dreaded sunburns when summer arrives is preventable, but sometimes we can be forgetful. So here are some tips on how to ease your sunburn.

10 Simple Steps to Easing That Sunburn

1. Aloe vera does magic. It helps cool the burned area quickly, giving instant relief. Aloe vera also works wonders for burns from touching something hot. Apply aloe vera to the area and rub gently. Leave the area a bit runny and moist, as this will help prevent the skin from drying out. Reapply as often as needed.

2. Apply a cool compress on the sunburned area. Dampen a washcloth or piece of fabric with cold water, and apply to the affected area for 20 to 30 minutes. Re-wet the cloth as often as you need.

3. Take an over-the-counter pain relief medicine. Ibuprofen and aspirin are good options to help reduce the inflammation around the sunburned area. It will help lessen the pain. Tylenol does not have an anti-inflammatory effect but may ease the pain.

4. Take a cool bath. Set the water to a cool temperature that’s just a little below lukewarm and relax for 10 to 20 minutes. The temperature will ease the pain and the water will stop your skin from being irritated. If you want or need to shower, keep the temperature just below lukewarm and use a very gentle flow. Avoid soap, bath oils, or other soapy items when you bathe or shower. It will only irritate your skin.

5. Apply witch hazel. Moisten a cloth with witch hazel and apply often for temporarily relief. This astringent has been shown to have long-lasting anti-inflammatory relief.  For small areas, dip cotton balls into the witch hazel and gently apply.

6. Find sunscreen or sunblocks with SPF 15 and up. SPF 15 protects against 84% of the sun’s harmful rays and SPF 30 protects against 97%.

7. Drink lots of water. This will help counteract the drying effects of having a sunburn. Eating fruits counts as a source of water too. One large watermelon wedge is more than 1 full cup of water.

8. Itchy sunburned skin? Soak in an oatmeal bath. If possible, grind the oatmeal. The finer the oatmeal, the better. Pour about 1/3 to 3/4 cup of oatmeal into a coffee filter or cheese cloth. Wrap it up and tie with a string or rubber band. Throw into a lukewarm tub of water and hop in to relax.

9. Got a small blister? It will heal on it’s own so try not to pop it. It should only take a few days to heal. 

10. Huge large painful blisters? May be best to drain it. Here is a method to safely drain the fluid. Wipe a needle with rubbing alcohol. Gently puncture the edge of the blister. Press the fluid in the blister toward the hole to let it drain out. Avoid alcohol or any other cleanser to the area. Apply an antibiotic ointment and a clean bandage. Remove the bandage at night to let the area dry.

If you do happen to have sunburn, try some of these tricks to help ease the pain. You may want to wear loose clothing over the affected area until it heals. Make sure to continuously apply some kind of relieving liquid to the area to help soothe it. Next time you’re out in the sun, apply sunscreen or sunblock to everywhere your body is going to be exposed to the sun. I mean everywhere.. from ears and eyelids to feet and toes. Don’t miss those important areas. Banana boat has these wonderful sprays instead of lotion to apply sunblock. It’s quick and easy to apply.

Kids, like adults, need plenty of protection from the sun. Their little bodies shouldn’t be exposed to too much sun, even if they are trying to get in some of that good vitamin D. Make sure as you lather yourself up in sunblock, to lather them in some too. I would recommend getting SPF 30+ for children as their skin is much more delicate and prone to burns.

Putting on sunblock or sunscreen shouldn’t just apply to the summer weather. My personal recommendation is to apply any type of SPF moisturizer or lotion whenever you go out in the sun. I make sure I always have some kind of SPF moisturizer on when I’m out in sunny weathers. Anything with SPF 15 will help protect your skin from those harsh UV rays. It doesn’t hurt to be extra careful when it comes to your skin.

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