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How to Care For Sun Poisoning

By Edited Sep 16, 2016 0 0

Sun poisoning  is a severe burn of the skins surface due to intense UVA or UVB ultraviolet rays. Both natural sunlight and artificial sunlight in tanning beds can cause  this painful burn. Sun poisoning is not an actual poison in the body, rather inflammation of the skins surface that can manifest in a few different ways. The most common symptoms of sun poison is red inflamed skin of course- but it could also be paired with swelling, pain, tingling, blisters, rashes, hives, chills, nausea, fatigue, dizziness, and headaches. Sun poisoning may also take longer to heal over less intense burns as well. This condition is very painful at its best, and there is no quick cure- there are some remedies to appease the unfortunate individuals pain temporarily.


Because the skin will be inflamed and likely swollen, it is a good idea to take a pain killer specifically for inflammation such as Ibprophen. Reducing the swelling in the burnt areas will make the skin less tight and less painful. Always take the recommended dose of any medication at any time. 


Aloe is proven to be adequately effective in soothing skin burns because of its cooling and soothing properties. And adding hydration to the burnt skin also helps with the burning sensation of stretching dry skin. There are many options for moisturizers with natural aloe included, which both sooth and hydrate the areas of irritated skin. If a combo moisturizer is not available, a hypo-allergenic moisturizer and aloe gel work great together as well- it just requires more contact with skin that is already irritated! There have even been a few individuals who add milk to their bath water because of the soothing proteins and moisturizing properties of the dairy product- and it requires no rubbing of the sun burnt skin. 
Sun poisoning lasts several days normally,  with most days consisting of extreme discomfort. One of the more stinging daily actions is showering, which is usually done with hot water. If someone has sun poisoning it is very painful to have even mildly hot water come into contact with burnt areas- so they turn the water to cold and send themselves into a freezing shock- and it poses no benefit whatsoever. The ideal water temperature would be cool enough to be comfortable without feeling too hot or too cold. The texture of the water may still bother irritated sun burnt areas. After showering, pat the burnt skin gently and immediately apply moisturizer and/or aloe to all sun burnt areas to help contain the moisture from the shower. 


After contracting sun poisoning it is best to stay out of the sun for more than a few minutes. If someone with sun poisoning must go back into the sun- covering all burnt areas is absolutely necessary. Using sunscreen properly everywhere skin is exposed is the best preventative measure. Wearing adequate clothing that covers the burnt areas is also a good idea, but the color of those clothing items do make a difference. When it is hot people tend to gravitate toward lighter colors to deflect the heat of the sun- however these colors do not protect against UV rays as well as darker color clothing items. It may be warmer, but it will keep anymore UV rays from damaging the already severely burnt skin. 


The very last thing that occurs is the peeling of the top layers of the severely burnt skin. Close to the end of healing process skin will get tight and rough to touch and begin to lift off of the body. It is completely safe to let the skin come off on its own- but the new skin underneath will be dry and benefit greatly from moisturizing. Sun poisoning will fade with time, but repeated sun burns or unprotected sun exposure at all can be extremely detrimental to skin's elastisity, texture, and overall healthy condition. Anytime anyone is subjected to long periods of UV ray exposure or  concentrated UV rays it is imperative that sunscreen is used and sunglasses, hats, darker clothing, and cover ups are used to help prevent painful sun poisoning or other lesser burns and prevent the negative effects of sun exposure.  

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