What do you mean by sunburn?
Chilling and lounging on the beach is so relaxing, isn’t it? But do you realise that in doing so your skin is getting damaged. Many of us are unaware of the serious effects sun damage can cause to our skin. Also majority of the people give a skip to sunscreen use, this directly exposes your skin to harmful rays of sun causing damage which is called sunburn. Now what exactly is sunburn and how does it happen, let us have a look.
Sunburn is a type of skin damage which happens due to exposure of your skin to sun’s harmful rays. The rays of the sun have some components which have potential to damage your skin. This damage can cause varying levels of damage to the skin. Certain factors decide the level and grade of skin damage that happens because of sunburn. These factors are the melanin content of the skin, duration of exposure to sun, skin sensitivity level, presence of any previous or existing skin diseases etc.
The signs of skin sunburn are redness of the skin, your skin might feel warm and sore, sometimes there is pain and increased sensitivity etc. In moderate-to-severe cases of sunburn you can experience blisters and itching on the affected portion. Skin undergoing damage due to sunburn tends to develop blemishes, freckles; also some part of it might appear darker as compared to other parts of your skin giving it a patchy appearance.
Sunburn in primary stages is not very serious and heals on its own. However care must be taken to not expose your skin very often to this type of sun damage as repeated sunburn might result in severe skin damage and skin diseases like skin cancer which might be fatal.
What do you do when you are sunburnt?
When you notice that your skin is sunburnt you should take some basic measures to reduce the effects. This helps in reliving the sunburn symptoms and prevents any further damage from happening.
First and foremost wash your affected skin with cold water. You can also sponge it gently using cold water or even ice cold water for that matter. Doing this is important to lower the skin temperature which increases due to the damage.
Sunburn also takes away the moisture from the skin and dehydrates your body. This is the reason why drinking plenty of water, fluids, juices, electrolyte drinks etc. is necessary after getting a sunburn. It normalises the water content and helps the body in recovering.
Next measure which you must take is applying a water based moisturiser or emollient. This can be a petroleum jelly, Vaseline or any other water based emollient cream. Applying a skin emollient helps in keeping the skin moisturised and protected. It also soothes and cools the damaged skin thus speeding up the recovery process.
Along with these measures it is necessary that you keep your damaged skin protected from sunlight. There should absolutely be no contact with the sun. If the sunburnt skin does come in contact with sunlight there will be severe damage of the affected part. Thus you must stay indoors, close the windows, and cover the damaged area with soft cotton clothing to protect the sun-damaged skin from undergoing further damage.
Although sunburn isn’t very serious in nature and usually doesn’t need medical attention, however if you observe any of the following symptoms seek medical help immediately without delaying any further. Go to a doctor if post sunburn you experience severe blistering or swelling of the affected skin, or if your body temperature increases above 100-101◦F. You can take medicines like analgesics and anti-inflammatory medicines to treat the symptomatic signs so that you get relief from pain and swelling. Some other symptoms like dizziness, feeling drained and exhausted after getting sunburnt might also require medical attention.
Tips to get rid of Sunburn overnight
The damage of sunburn heals and recedes at its own slow pace. However sunburn effects can be embarrassing at times; such that you simply wish you could get rid of them overnight. Let us see how you can do that. Taking care of damaged sunburnt skin is very important and suitable steps should be taken. The key is to take measures that heal the damage which was caused due to the burn. Let us have a look at some simple yet effective tips to get rid of sunburn overnight.
Aloe vera gel
Aloe vera gel is very beneficial for your skin. It can be easily obtained as well. The best source of aloe vera gel is to grow a plant in your garden and as per need cut a piece and extract fresh gel out of it. Aloe gel helps in cooling the damaged area and helps in reducing the burn. You will notice a visible change overnight. The right technique is to lavishly cover the damaged surface with aloe gel and leave it undisturbed for about an hour or so. Let the magic happen.
Milk and corn starch
Corn starch is very beneficial for sunburn damage. It forms a smooth paste with milk and when applied on the damaged skin as a thick paste heals the sunburn overnight. Milk adds on to the benefits of corn starch and cools the skin and moisturises it as well.
Apple cider vinegar
Vinegar helps in healing sunburn. It helps in removing the damaged cells and helps growth of healthy cells. The apple cider variant of vinegar is most effective. The method of use is simple, just put few drops on a cotton ball and apply it on the affected part. For best results re-apply within 3-4 hours. The sunburnt skin shows lot of improvement and almost heals overnight.
Rubbing the potato skin over sunburn helps in healing. The outer potato skin is comparatively more beneficial. The method of applying it is to peel the skin off and grind it so that it forms a smooth paste. Apply this paste (preferably after cooling it) over the affected area for best results. The healing properties of potato skin heal the sunburn overnight.
Coconut oil coats the skin and protects your skin against skin burn. In addition it has some constituents which heal the already damaged skin. Gently massage the sunburnt area with coconut oil twice daily for best results.
Cucumber and milk pack
Cucumber has great cooling and healing properties. Milk adds benefit by helping in the healing process as well as restoring the skin’s moisture. When applied together as a skin pack, cucumber and milk are of the best
Green tea has wonderful antioxidant and skin healing properties. It also promotes new cell growth which helps in healing of the sunburn portion. Green tea additionally has tannins which speeds up the recovery thus helps in healing sunburn overnight.
Yoghurt is a probiotic and has good bacteria which are very beneficial for the body. In addition it is a cooling agent and soothes the burnt skin. It is beneficial for the damaged skin and heals the skin overnight. Just apply a thick layer of yoghurt on the skin and leave it as is for 2-3 hours.
Massaging with ice cools the skin and brings down the temperature of the burnt portion. You can mix couple of cubes in water and gently massage it on the skin sunburn. Just take care that you don’t apply ice on the sunburnt skin immediately after the damage; it might increase the damage extensively.
Can sunburn be prevented?
Yes sunburn can be prevented. The basic skin care routine to prevent sunburn is to apply a good sunscreen and apply it couple of times in a day. A good sunscreen should be SPF 30 and above. Second important step is to cover your skin while going out in the sun. This can be done by wearing hats, sunglasses and covering skin with cotton cloth. Try and keep your skin covered. Try and avoid going out in sun during the peak hours so that skin isn’t exposed to sun.
Do’s and Don’ts for Sunburn
Some basic must dos for preventing sunburn are:
- Use a sunblock
- Wear hats, scarf and sunglasses
- Prefer wearing light cotton clothes while going out in sun
- Take measures to treat sunburn if at all you damage your skin
- Make use of the above given remedies to get rid of sunburn
Some basic don’ts to heal and take care of sunburn are:
- Avoid make up on the damaged sunburnt skin
- Avoid wearing tight clothes like tight denims which doesn’t give breathing space to the skin.
- Avoid applying hot water on the damaged skin
- Do not use chemical and fragrant soaps on the affected area
We saw an entire list of quick remedies to get rid of sunburn so that there is no further damage happening and there are no serious consequences. Your skin is one of the most sensitive organs and it is important to take care of it. Do not ignore your precious skin and do take good care of it.