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How to Soothe a Sunburn - woman lying on a beach chair with hat placed over her face
How to Soothe a Sunburn

I try to be diligent about covering up and wearing sunblock, and am constantly nagging my kids to do the same. But despite our best intentions, occasionally one of us ends up with a bad burn.

Even mild sunburns can be quite painful, but more serious ones have a risk of complications if not properly taken care of. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are steps you can take to soothe your sore skin, and to help prevent infections. Here are their recommendations:

First and foremost, make sure to protect yourself from further sun exposure. Do not go back out in the sun while you’re nursing a bad burn.

Secondly, keep it cool. You may balk at the idea of a cold shower, but this or using an ice cold washcloth pressed gently on your skin will help alleviate pain and inflammation.

Should they appear, don’t pop blisters. They have formed to help protect your skin and help it heal, and puncturing them could lead to infection.

It’s okay to take a pain reliever, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, as long as they are medications that you are able to take safely.

Apply a moisturizer, but make sure it is free from fragrances and dyes. Aloe vera or a brand such as Aquaphor are good options.

If you develop any serious complications, such as a fever, headache, chills, or infection, consult your physician right away.

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