Beauty Talks: Home remedies for treating sunburns

Dr Saumya Shetty Hegde, Dermatologist, Roots Skin Clinic, doles out easy home remedies for treating sunburns

After a beautiful weekend on beach or enjoying  in amusement parks the sun, you only wants to bring back are those joyful memories and perhaps a souvenir. What you don’t want to return home is with angry-looking and painful skin, prone to blistering or peeling. For millions of people, however, sunburn is a lasting reminder of time spent in the sun.

Take the sunscreen route

As widely recommended is the  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 parts. Because they forget the fact that a reapplication of it is required throughout the day, approximately after every 3-4 hours. Many of them apply it only before indulging in an outdoor activity which is very wrong.

Now comes is the right sunscreen to avoid sunburn: Like not all sunscreen works efficiently in the same way. There are various sunscreens available important is to understand your particular skin type and apply it.  Note the levels of SPF, formula and area specifications. There is a distinctive sunscreen for each body part, face and lips.

When the skin is exposed to too much of ultraviolet lights (UV), whether it is from direct sun or from any other artificial sources such as sunlamps, sunburn can definitely occur. Thus easily done sunburn can also be avoided with adequate forms of preventions. But if not prevented at right time it might damage your skin which may lead to Cancers such as melanoma.

Do I a sun burn?

After sunburn your skin will be typically red, painful and hot to touch this happens within few hours. In severe cases you can form blisters on the skin and a sometimes an individual can experience headaches and fever, it differs from person to person. Roughly 80% of CV rays could come through clothes, and also through snow, sand and water as it reflects UV too. It is hence advisable to wear sunscreen even when it is not too sunny.

Sunburn cases can vary. Once the skin is burnt, it becomes important to move towards the healing process and soothing the pain. When a person realises that the he/she is suffering from sunburn, the person must immediately get out of the sun, better still, stay indoors. Once UV exposure is reduced, there are a lot of options available to treat sun burn.  

Beauty Talks: Home remedies for treating sunburns

Treating sunburn

For immediate relief, cooling the skin down can reduce the discomfort. Place damp towels on the skin or take a cool bath or shower and then apply a moisturizer, which can help trap the water in the skin, easing the dryness. Moisturizing after bathing is important as without it the skin can feel drier than before.

Quick remedies

Apply cool (and not cold) milk with a clean cloth to the sunburned skin. Milk creates a protein film that will reduce the discomfort. You can also apply yogurt to the sunburned area. Vitamin E, which is known to be an antioxidant, can be used to ease inflammation that is caused by sunburn. You can apply it on the skin, or take a regular dose of Vitamin E supplement.

Boiled mashed potatoes are also an excellent way of treating sunburns. Apply the cold mashed potatoes as a dressing to the sunburned; starch in potatoes draws out heat. Another easy home remedy is mixing cornstarch in water to make a paste and then applying it on the inflamed skin.

Oatmeal is known for cooling down inflammation 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. Blended oatmeal can be combined with normal water to be applied on the skin, but mixing it with milk is advisable as as milk moisturizes the skin and can also be of great use if you are looking to reverse an unwanted tan.

Use your regular teabags instead of throwing them to treat sunburned eyelids and reduce inflammation. Soak teabags in cold water and put them on affected areas. Another natural antioxidant is cucumbers which also natural analgesic properties. Take chilled cucumbers, mash them in a blender and make a paste. Apply this paste to affected areas. This can also be used on the face. Cucumber also can be used on peeling skin following a sunburn.

Now there are plenty of home remedies that can be tried to soothe down the pain and the sunburn effects. However preventing is always a better option. Like wearing a hat, more covering shirts and sunscreen can surely avoid the complications that follow sunburn.

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