Lots of people love summer and the warm weather it brings with it. Summer means trips to the beach and the pool and no school or homework for three months. Unfortunately, summer also often brings sunburns, too, because of all the time we spend outside.
Since sunburns can be very harmful to your body, if you notice that you are sunburned, consider these tips right away to keep it from getting worse:
Cool down the affected area.
The first thing you should do after noticing you have become sunburned is to briefly submerge yourself in water. If you’re at the pool or the beach, hop in to cool off, and then continue to keep your skin cool with a damp compress. Applying ice directly to your sunburn may seem like the obvious choice, but try to refrain from doing so. Make sure you’re covered so that area cannot become even more sunburned, and try to avoid a long shower or bath—some soaps can be irritating to your skin.
Moisturize while damp.
Keep your skin moisturized by applying lotion to the burned area. Always make sure your skin is damp when applying the moisturizer, as that will help it soak in the nutrients better. These ointments should not contain petroleum or oil, as that will trap the heat and increase the burn’s severity.
Taking an anti-inflammatory like aspirin or ibuprofen can help alleviate the pain and discomfort that comes with sunburns. Cortisone cream can be applied to help with any redness or swelling when taken as directed.
Wear loose clothing.
Tight clothes will rub against the irritated skin and worsen the burn. Refrain from wearing fabrics like spandex that don’t let your skin breathe, and make sure your clothes are loose so they won’t cause you more injury.
Of course, it’s important to always stay hydrated, but it’s especially needed with sunburns. Sunburns draw fluid to the surface of the skin, which takes the fluid away from other parts of your body. Supplement this by making a conscious effort to take in more fluids to avoid dehydration.
See a doctor if needed.
Although sunburn is often able to go away on its own over time, if the sunburn becomes worse, consult a doctor to see if there is any treatment available. Symptoms such as blistered skin, fever, chills, lightheadedness, or feelings of confusion are indications that this sunburn may be more serious than usual.