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Sunburn Festival That You Would Not Like

Want the summer golden tan, but you underdid the sunscreen and overdid the sun. Instead of getting that golden tan, you got red hot chilli pepper skin and a flakey one in the coming days. But what exactly are sunburns? It is the painful, inflamed part of the skin which happens when you spend a lot of time in the sun.

What causes the skin to get sunburned?

Any body part exposed to the sun for too long can get sunburned, even your scalp, earlobe and lips. It is caused when your skin gets too much UV (Ultra-Violet) light. It may be from the sun or artificial sources such as sunlamps or tanning beds.

Two types of UV light penetrate your skin UVA and UVB. UVA penetrates deep into your skin and causes skin damage over some time. UVB penetrates shallowly and causes your skin to get burned. 

The UV wavelength of light damages the skin cells, and in its response, the blood capillaries dilate to increase the blood flow in the affected area, making the skin red and inflamed (erythema). 

How to know you got Sunburn?

The symptoms will often surface a few hours after you get your exposure to the sun. Various symptoms can tell you if you have been exposed for too long to the sun:

  • Your skin gets hot 

Skin usually gives off warmness when it is overheated. To the touch, the affected area feels warm. This overheating can last up to a few days, which may become uncomfortable, but you can eliminate this by cooling off the skin.

  • Your skin turns red

The affected area gets red as the blood rushes to cool off the heat trapped in your body. The capillaries dilate and increase the blood flow to disperse heat from the area to the surrounding.

  • Your skin becomes itchy

This is the first sign that your skin is getting burned and you should immediately run for some shade. Do not scratch the itchy area as it may increase inflammation and cause pain.

  • Your skin gets tight and swells up

After the initial itchy and heat which comes with sunburns, your skin starts to get tight and swells up from all the blood and inflammation of the blood vessels.

  • Your skin gets white when touched

If the sun burns the skin, it will turn white if you press on the affected area. This is because by pressing down, you temporarily restrict the blood flow in the area, which turns it white. 

How to treat your sunburn?

Your skin can burn if it doesn’t get proper care when under the sun. To help soothe and heal the stinging skin, you must start the treatment as soon as possible. The first thing that is recommended to do is to get away from the sun, preferably indoors.

Once you are indoors, you can follow the following tips provided by the best doctors at Ayushman:

  • Use aloe vera moisturizer

Aloe vera helps soothe the skin and helps the skin to recover quickly. If an area is exceptionally discomforting, you can use a hydrocortisone cream available without a prescription. Do not use products that end with “-caine” (like benzocaine) as it may further irritate the skin or cause some allergic reactions.

  • Drink extra water 

When your body gets affected by the sun, your body starts to feel dehydrated as sunburn draws the fluid away from the rest of the body. So, drinking excess water will help recover the essential bodily fluids lost.

  • Take more and frequent cool baths 

As soon as you get out of a cool bath or a shower, don't rub your body; instead, gently pat the area and leave some water on your skin. Then apply some moisturizer to trap the water inside the pores of your skin.

  • Allow your blisters to heal

If you form a blister on your skin, you have a second-degree burn. Do not pop those blisters as they help your skin to heal and protect it from getting infected.

  • Take extra safety measures when going out in the sun

Wear clothes that cover your skin. Do not wear loose stitched clothes, go for some tightly-woven fabric. Always apply sunscreen when you are out in the sun SPF30 and above will work. 

Sunburns are not that serious, but one should take care of them whenever they are out in the sun as receiving too much UV light from the sun can cause long-lasting damage to the skin. This increases the risk of developing skin cancer if exposed too long in the sun or get frequent sunburns.



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MBBS, Trichologist (Hair Specialist)

He specializes in curing hair ailments while possessing a decade of practice in hair grafting for both men and women. He did his medical stu...

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