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  • Sunburn: treatment, first aid at home

    Sunburn is the damage to the skin due to excessive exposure to sunlight. In the arising process, an inflammatory component takes place.

    Solar burn is caused mainly by short-wave radiation of the UV-B type, which affects the upper layers of the epidermis and dermis.

    However, we can not exclude the negative effect on the skin of long-wave radiation of the type UV-A, which penetrates to a greater depth than UV-B.Short-wave radiation gives clinical symptoms directly to sunburn, and long waves, affecting the deeper layers, provoke the development of more serious complications.

    The sun's rays affect different types of skin differently. Thus, people with light skin are most prone to burns associated with exposure to ultraviolet rays. In the epidermis of black people, a greater amount of melanin is produced, which is a specific protection for the skin.

    Symptoms of sunburn


    Solar burns have a sufficiently bright and characteristic for them clinical symptomatology, which allows you to suspect excessive overheating of both the organism as a whole and a certain area of ​​the skin.


    Depending on the severity of the course of the pathological process, the clinical picture may vary slightly. With a moderately developed burn, a person will complain of soreness of the skin when touching it, intense burning, itching, distinctly noticeable flushing. When palpation of the skin, you can notice a rise in temperature( the skin is hot to the touch).

    With prolonged exposure to the sun and more intense exposure to its rays, the puffiness of the skin and subcutaneous fat in the place of burn localization, the appearance of blisters of various sizes with serous contents are added to the previous symptoms.

    It is possible to form dry crusts on the skin, which can also cause wetting( serous discharge).During the course of the process of medium and severe degree, general clinical symptoms arise, which is an increase in body temperature, the appearance of nausea and vomiting, headache, weakness, malaise.

    See also how to treat a burn with boiling water.

    Possible complications of


    Minor burns are easier and almost never lead to complications. As for moderate and severe burns, they can not only lead to the formation of various defects in the skin and subcutaneous tissue, but also negatively affect the entire body. Such burns are often difficult to treat and heal for a long time.

    Formed due to active exposure to the skin of the sun's rays, ulcers and erosions heal very long and in the future can leave behind cicatricial changes. On the site of sunburn, areas of hypopigmentation may appear, which differ from healthy skin that is unaffected by UV rays.

    Also a frequent consequence of sunburn is the appearance of actinic keratoses, which are coarse skin areas with active peeling. Actinic keratoses, in contrast to hypopigmentation, are hyperpigmented areas, the color of which varies from pale pink to brown.

    In addition, ultraviolet radiation contributes to the formation of pigmented spots, which although are of a benign nature, but can still be malignant. There are cases when, at first sight, an innocuous mole or nevus was transformed into a malignant tumor of the skin with melanoma over time.

    In case of damage to the integrity of the blister cover, it is possible to enter the infection with the subsequent development of a secondary bacterial suppuration.

    How to treat a sunburn: first aid


    The treatment of a sunburn is divided into the provision of the first emergency aid and direct exposure to the affected skin areas in order to prevent complications and the fastest elimination of clinical symptoms.

    And so, what to do with a sunburn at home? Immediately, after the traces of sunburn on the skin became visible, you should take a cool bath or shower in order to lower the temperature of the burned skin, and also to some extent anesthetize them.

    After taking a shower, you can anoint the skin with lotion with aloe, hyaluronic acid or chamomile, but not on alcohol basis. To prevent edema, you should keep the affected limbs( if your hands or feet are burnt) in a slightly elevated state.

    Special attention should be given to the diet: it is recommended to drink as much liquid as possible and eat protein foods. Water allows you to accelerate metabolism, and protein has a good effect on the rapid regeneration of tissues.

    How else can you treat a sunburn at home? During the day, it is necessary to regularly treat the skin with Panthenol. For the purpose of anesthesia, the use of such drugs as: Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Aspirin, which not only help to anesthetize the affected areas, but also to some extent relieve the inflammation. In addition, with severe inflammation, itching and burning, antihistamine medicines( Claritin, Suprastin, Tavegil) are very helpful.

    In the event that the skin of blisters formed on the skin is damaged, it is necessary to apply antibacterial ointment( Mekol) and apply a sterile bandage to prevent secondary infection.

    How to smear sunburn at home


    If you prefer to use natural products, or you do not have the opportunity to go to a pharmacy - then folk remedies will be an excellent solution for treating sunburn at home.

    Let's list effective national recipes so that it becomes clear what to smear a sunburn at home.

    1. 1) The easiest way to use ordinary potatoes, which for sure there is almost everyone in the apartment. The method is very simple - we take potatoes, mine, we clean and grate. The resulting mixture is applied to the desired area of ​​the skin for 20 minutes, after which it is washed off with water.
    2. 2) This method is also very simple and very popular. As ingredients, we will use kefir or sour cream of low fat content. Dairy products will help reduce inflammation, pain, and also will not allow dehydration of the skin. Apply the selected product to the affected area of ​​the skin and evenly, mildly rub it. After 2 hours you can rinse and smear repeatedly( if necessary).
    3. 3) Aloe. Take the necessary amount of this plant and grind, add a little milk, the resulting gruel should be applied to the skin 2-3 times a day. You can wash off after 30 minutes. Those who buried the aloe in the nose know that it can burn and pinch the skin, so be careful.

    What should not be done in case of sunburn


    In order not to aggravate an already unpleasant situation, in case of sunburn, in no case is it possible:

    1. 1) To smear the affected areas of the skin with alcohol-containing lotions, oils, anesthetic ointments( for example, with lidocaine);
    2. 2) Exposure to the mechanical impact of the burn: do not rub, do not scratch the skin, avoid wearing coarse stiff fabrics;
    3. 3) Peel off the scaly areas formed on the skin and break or pierce the emerging blisters;
    4. 4) Especially actively use soap on the UV-burned areas of the body.
    See also, treatment of chemical burns.

    Prevention of


    Solar burns are much easier to prevent than to deal with their treatment, especially when it comes to the average and severe course of the process.

    In order to avoid damage to the skin by ultraviolet rays, several simple rules for sun exposure must be observed:

    1. 1) Use of sunscreen products( gels, lotions, creams, emulsions, etc.).It should be remembered that the lighter the skin, the more it needs protection. Apply sunscreen is necessary immediately before going out to the street. Particular attention should be given to those areas of the skin that most often burn: the nose, cheeks, shoulders, back, chest. After each bath, you must reapply UV protection;
    2. 2) Control of the time spent in the sun. In the first days of sunbathing it is recommended to stay under direct sunlight for no more than 20 minutes;
    3. 3) Avoid exposure to the sun in the time interval from 10 am to 3 pm, when the sun has increased activity;
    4. 4) Wearing sunglasses that protect not only the delicate skin around the eyes, but also the retina of the eye from the aggressive influence of ultraviolet;
    5. 5) Wearing a wide-brimmed hat that will help not only protect your face from burns, but also prevent sunstroke;
    6. 6) Avoid exposure to the sun during antibacterial and some other preparations. Carefully read the annotation, because some drugs increase the sensitivity of the skin to ultraviolet radiation;
    7. 7) Try to stay away from water, which reflects the sun's rays and promotes their more active effects on the skin.


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