Try as we might to prevent it, we’ve all been sunburned before. Whether it happens while on vacation or while at home, having a sunburn can be extremely painful and can result in lasting skin damage. The most important thing to do for your skin is to wear SPF every day, no matter what your plans for the day are. But if you slip up and get burned, there are ways to help soothe the skin. Here are some of the best sunburn treatments you can use.
Aloe vera is an all-natural treatment for sunburns. This plant has the ability to heal skin quickly and act as a relief for pain and heat. To use aloe vera as a sunburn treatment, you can use the goopy, gel-like insides of an actual aloe vera plant.
If you don’t have a live aloe vera plant on hand, you can go to the store and purchase a lotion with aloe vera in it. Try to find a lotion or gel that has a high percentage of aloe vera in it to ensure that the product will work on your sunburn.
Aspirin or ibuprofen
Taking aspirin or ibuprofen will reduce redness, swelling and discomfort. This medication will provide relief within an hour or two.
Take frequent cool baths or showers
While your skin is healing from your sunburn, try using cool water to relieve your symptoms. Putting cool water against the skin will reduce redness and swelling and will also take that painful hot sting away. After you step out of the shower or bathtub, put aloe vera lotion on right away. This will trap moisture in your skin and will speed up the healing process.
Oatmeal is a natural healing remedy for the skin. It is a cheap, easy way to moisturize skin, even when you don’t have a sunburn. When you are healing from your sunburn, put a few cups of natural raw oats into a lukewarm bath. Let the oatmeal dissolve slightly into the water, and then soak in the tub for about 20 minutes.
Taking an oatmeal bath will instantly soothe your skin and take away the stinging sunburn pain. You can do this several times a day if your sunburn is very severe. After your oatmeal bath, moisturize with an aloe vera lotion.
Drink more water
Staying hydrated is key when you are sunburned. Your skin is already dry and your body is trying to compensate for it, so drinking extra water will help keep the whole process of healing your body running smoothly.
If you get sunburn on a very sensitive area of your skin, the pain can be unbearable. If this happens to you, use a cool compress directly on the skin to ease the pain. Use an ice pack or some ice cubes in a plastic bag, and don’t forget to put a towel around the bag to keep the ice from sticking to your skin.
Do not pop blisters
Some extreme sunburns can cause blisters on the skin. These blisters can be painful and annoying, but you should absolutely resist picking at them. Popping them can lead to scarring and skin damage and may even cause infection. If you experience these blisters during your sunburn, take extra care not to scratch or pick at them.
Do not expose your skin to the sun
While your sunburn is healing, it is vital to keep your skin protected. If you go outside, make sure to wear clothes that protect your skin from the sun. Wear SPF and a hat to cover your face. Exposing your skin to more sun while it is trying to heal will make your body have to work harder and will only have negative results.
Resist the itch
Just like resisting popping the blisters, you have to also try to resist itching. Your skin may start to feel itchy as it begins the healing process. Do not scratch it, as that could peel some skin off and lead to infection. As your sunburn is healing, it is vital to let that healing happen naturally. Let your skin do what it knows how to do and try your best not to disrupt the process!
Do not peel
As your sunburn heals, dead skin will begin to peel away from the new skin underneath. While this is happening, do your best not to peel the dead skin off. You might accidentally peel off the new skin that is forming, disrupting your skin’s natural healing process. Use a moisturizer on your skin while it is peeling to speed up the healing process and to ensure that more skin damage doesn’t happen.
Always wear sunscreen
Wearing SPF is one of the most important ways to take care of your skin. The more sunburns we get, the more likely we are to experience skin cancer later in life. This summer, make sure to wear SPF and apply it several times during the day but if you do get a sunburn, don’t forget these are the best sunburn treatments.
For more tips on sunburn and skincare, contact our offices today!