Sunburn’s Temporary and Extended Implications
Sunburns have long-term implications, including liver spots, premature wrinkling, and even cancer! But it’s the stinging pain you’ll be thinking about if you happened to leave the SPF 30 in the closet. While there is no miracle potion to immediately cure you, there are some tips to speed up your recovery.
Tips for Recovering from a Sunburn
- Immediately take an anti-inflammatory, such as Ibuprofen or Naproxen on a schedule per label instructions until pain subsides.
- Alternate hydrocortisone and aloe applications every 4-6 hours. Note that many creams and gels have stinging alcohol (make sure to read the labels), so try to find an aloe lotion instead. Better yet, break the stem off of an aloe plant, and apply the juice to the sunburn. Also beware of some of the numbing products that contain local anesthetic, as irritation and/or allergic reactions can occur.
- If you blister, don’t un-roof it. Just lightly cover it with gauze. When peeling begins to occur, apply moisturizer to damp skin after taking a shower. Pat dry, and rub the moisturizer in to lock water in the upper layers of the skin.
- For temporary relief, try a cold compress, or a bath (remember to air dry, as towels irritate sun-burned skin). A fan set to a slow speed can also be soothing.
Serious Sunburn Symptoms
For a fever, extensive blisters, pus, red streaks tracking away from the blister, or extreme pain, see your doctor. If you would like to prevent all of these unpleasant symptoms, limit your sun exposure during 10 AM – 3 PM, and remember to pull that sunscreen out of the closet!