7 Tips for Soothing a Sunburn

There are few things better than lazing in the sun and enjoying a day at the beach, but that fun can quickly be cut short by a sunburn ,the skin’s reaction to ultraviolet light found in the sun’s rays. While most skin damage from sunburns is typically mild or severe, certain sunburns do need medical attention. But how do you know what’s severe and what’s simply an irritation? For starters,severe sunburns often blister, are accompanied by a fever or pain, and don’t improve within a few days. You should also consult a doctor if you’ve developed a skin infection from scratching your skin.

1.Cool down with a compress
Following a sunburn, the skin is inflamed, swollen, and can even feel hot. To cool it down, dip a compress in water and lay it over the burn. The cloth will warm in response to the skin, and once that happens, it’s time to dip the cloth in cold water again. Repeat this exercise several times a day to continually cool down the skin. Those with itching can also mix in some aluminum acetate — commonly found in drugstores as Domeboro powder to help skin from getting too dry and itchy.

2.Apply aloe vera to burned skin.
You can buy gels or lotions that contain aloe vera at most stores, or you can cut a chunk off the plant itself if you have one available.

3.Take a dip
If you’re burned all over, take a soak in a cool bath to which you’ve added oatmeal. You can either buy a colloidal oatmeal product, such as Aveeno, or simply grind up a cup of oatmeal in a food processor and add it to your bath.

4.Avoid soap
It may sound counter-intuitive to someone wanting to clean the skin,but it’s not- soap can dry and irritate burned skin, making things worse.

5.Apply certain foods to burned areas
If you’re someone who has a stocked kitchen, then you’re in an even better position when sunburn season rolls around, as many kitchen staples can be soothing to burns. One of the most common “home” remedies for a burn is using yogurt, which can help reestablish pH balance and restore the skin. Apply it to your skin as a paste, and rinse off with slightly warm water once the yogurt turns warm.

6.Make your bed sunburn-safe
Sprinkle your sheets with cornstarch to minimize painful chafing. (Use this technique only for bad sunburns, since you’ll have to wash the sheets afterward.)

7.Help your body heal
One of the most important things to remember throughout the healing process is that a sunburn is a burn and needs to be treated seriously. Try and do what you can on every level: Since your body loses fluids when it’s overheated, and sunburns can be dehydrating, be sure to drink plenty of water.

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