How Can You Manage A Sunburn?

How Can You Manage A Sunburn?

One of the most eminent problems faced by a large number of teenage and young adults every year is sunburn and redness from spending time outdoors in summer.

Whether it is a work demand, vacation trip or simple everyday activity like jogging, your skin is likely to be affected by large UV rays of the sun.

The widely recommended solution for this is the use of sunblock and protection serums before heading out in the sun. However, a lot of people complain about getting sunburn regardless of the sunscreen application to every exposed part of the body. Why does this happen?

Most of the people have added applying sunscreen before indulging in any outdoor activity to their everyday routine but they forget the fact that a reapplication of it is required throughout the day, approximately after every 3-4 hours.

In addition, not all sunscreens work efficiently in the same way. There are various types of sunscreens available which differ in form, levels of SPF, formula and area specifications. There is a distinctive sunscreen for each body part, face and lips.

Choosing a specific form of sunscreen plays a fundamental role in determining to what extent it can protect the face and body from the harsh UV rays.

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For example, a liquid spray sunscreen specified for the face may work better for one person while the other might find thick, moisturizing sunscreen without specification better.

The recommended SPF levels are usually above 30 due to the increasing heat and harshness of the sun generally. In some cases, the suggested level can be different because of climate and lifestyle.

Countries located close to the equator tend to be hotter than others. People in these countries are usually advised to use an SPF 70 body sunscreen because of longer time spent in the blazing sun.

It can be very hard to find the right sunscreen for face or body. Additionally, reapplying sunscreen throughout the day can be a difficult task for people with busy routines. As a result, sunburn is commonly seen among adults and teenagers.

How does sunburn happen?

Spending time out in the sun is fairly important to avoid a Vitamin D deficiency but every nutrient is needed in a specific amount in the body. Too much of a good thing can be harmful even in the human body mechanisms.

It is common knowledge that sunburn happens from spending too much time in the sun, but what really does happen to your skin when you go out in the sun that it starts burning?

The Ultraviolent rays that follow the light rays from the sun are essentially harmful to every living creature around the world.

In order to protect the skin, which is the first organ to be exposed to them, the skin produces a protective pigment called melanin. This pigment is well-known for skin tanning. The body can safeguard the skin only for a specific period of time.

Unexposed skin in the sun for a longer time is too much for the body to endure. Consequently, redness and burning sensations follow the tanning when the UV rays are too much to handle.

Both natural skin tanning and tanning salons follow a similar procedure. Mild tans from a day spent at the beach are different from the sun burns in ways that the exposure to the sun is not continuous and sunscreen application last for the 2-3 hours spent there.

Tanning salons have a controlled environment where the temperature and UV rays are controlled in the tanning beds. The process is usually 15-20 minutes long. Secondly, visits are restricted by these salons to prevent any risks to the skin. Hence, sunburn from a tanning bed is rarely seen.

Sunburn begins at different times depending on the person’s skin sensitivity and tone. A person with a lighter complexion has less melanin in the skin naturally and is more prone to sunburn.

Perpetually standing in the sun for as little as 15-20 minutes can lead to a sunburn for fair skinned people.

This is the reason why skin damages from UV rays are more common in the Western countries than the Caribbean countries. However, this does not mean protection from the sun is only needed by people with fair complexions.

Dark or tan skinned people are at equal risks of getting serious skin issues if too much time is spent outdoors without any protection.

The time required to get a sunburn in dark-skinned people can be 45-50 minutes.  For people with sensitive skin, the skin tone is less important.

The visibility of skin tanning and redness is not the immediate indicator of sunburn. In fact, it should be noted that the full effects of sunburns take almost 24 hours to develop and appear. Blisters from burns in the sun can even take a week’s time to show.

In cases of sunburns, tanning and redness are the least worrisome of the effects of ultraviolet rays.

How to Manage Sunburns in the Summer Heat?

What are the Solutions to sunburns?

Sunburns are hard to avoid for most people. No matter how hard you try, it is difficult to not be exposed to the sun while leaving the house. Moreover, a continuous application can be easily missed and forgotten about due to being indulged in work.

The most go-to solution for people is buying sunburn relief products from stores, which are merely just mentally satisfying and may take weeks to heal the burns. Instead of wasting money on such products, the following can be tried to get relief from sunburn redness and pain:

  • Essential oils
    Essential oils such as peppermint oil and lavender are not only useful when it comes to relief from stress and anxiety, healthy hair or smelling refreshing but can be used to treat various skin conditions such as sunburns.
    The cooling effect and antimicrobial properties of these oils can especially help the pain from sunburns instantly and prevent any further developments in the affected areas.
    Another advantage of peppermint and lavender oil is that they can be used to get rid of headaches that follow sunburn. A light massage of a blend of both will effectively help a head or body ache.
  • Cornstarch
    Having sunburn can make it difficult for people to sleep at night since the inflamed skin sticks to the bed sheets repeatedly leading to painful chafing. Sprinkle cornstarch on sheets before going to bed to reduce friction and avoiding chafing.
  • Hydration
    Sunburns are expected to reduce the moisture in the body greatly, which is why dry, flaky skin on the affected areas happens. A burn cannot be treated if your body is not getting enough water.
    Drinking plenty of water can contribute significantly to the healing process. Moreover, adding hydrating foods such as Watermelon and oranges are not just great for health generally but can come in handy for healing because of the high amount of Vitamin C in them.
  • Oatmeal and milk
    Oatmeal is well-known for cooling down inflammations in the body and skin. Using blended dry oats on the skin directly can help get rid of sunburn and the pain that comes with it in a quicker time.
    The blended oatmeal can be combined with normal water to be applied on the skin but mixing it with milk can maximize the effects as milk moisturizes the skin and can also be of great use if you are looking to reverse an unwanted tan.

Avoiding sunburns

There are plenty of home remedies that can be tried to soothe down the pain and effects of a sunburn. However, prevention is always better. A few simple steps such as wearing hats, more covering shirts and sunscreen can avoid complications that follow sunburn.

Keep in mind that UV rays are also responsible for severe health conditions such as skin cancer. Do not skip important steps such as applying sunscreen. A good day out can also be enjoyed with the precautionary measures in mind.

How to Manage Sunburns in the Summer Heat?

Andrea White

As a graduate of Public Health and Policy, Andrea developed an interest in disease development, food and safety and the latest advancements in health. She is a Freelance writer who had affiliations with multiple blogs. Andrea is now pursuing her post-doctorate in Behavioral Sciences.

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