How to Get Rid of Sunburn Naturally

Spending too much time under the sun, whether on vacation or during a leisurely outdoor activity, can lead to uncomfortable sunburn symptoms. While you can’t make the redness disappear overnight, there are simple remedies to ease the pain, itchiness, and swelling associated with sunburn. In this article, we’ll discuss effective treatments to help you feel better and enjoy your summer plans without discomfort.

How long does sunburn last?

The duration of sunburn varies depending on its severity:

  • Mild sunburn, characterized by slight redness and tenderness, typically lasts 3 to 5 days.
  • Moderate sunburn, where the skin starts peeling after the first day, may take 5 to 7 days to heal.
  • Severe sunburn, accompanied by blisters, usually requires around 7 to 10 days for complete healing.

If you’re unsure about the severity of your sunburn or experiencing concerning symptoms such as blistering, swelling, high body temperature, fatigue, dizziness, nausea, or headaches, it’s important to consult a healthcare professional.

How quickly do you get sunburned?

Everyone’s skin reacts differently to the sun, mostly due to your natural skin type.

If you have lighter skin, you produce less melanin and are more prone to sunburn. On the other hand, darker skin produces more melanin and is less likely to burn.

But even if you don’t see visible sunburn, your skin might still be damaged. Always wear sunscreen with at least SPF 30 to protect yourself.

How to treat sunburn quickly

Prevention is the best treatment for sunburn. Limit your time in the sun, wear protective clothing and sunscreen, and take breaks in the shade.

If you do get sunburned, here are some quick remedies for relief:

1. Use Aloe vera

Aloe vera has natural anti-inflammatory properties and provides a cooling sensation, helping to soothe sunburn. It also helps hydrate the skin, speeding up recovery and reducing itching. If you don’t have Aloe vera, you can use alternatives like oatmeal, coconut oil, or diluted essential oils.

Apply Aloe vera or your chosen remedy as soon as you notice sunburn and continue using it until the burn heals.

2. Cool Down with a Shower or Bath

Even after seeking shade, sunburn can leave you feeling overheated. To ease the discomfort and lower your body temperature, try taking a gentle, cool shower or bath.

The cool water not only provides instant relief from sunburn pain, leaving you feeling refreshed, but also helps clean the affected area, reducing the risk of infection. Avoid using harsh soaps, though, as they can irritate and dry out your skin. Instead, opt for Aloe vera lotion to keep your skin moisturized and soothe the sunburn.

3. Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water is crucial for overall health, especially in hot weather. It can also help speed up your recovery from sunburn.

Proper hydration supports your body’s healing process and can shorten the time it takes for your sunburn to heal. Plus, staying well-hydrated can alleviate the discomfort caused by high body temperature, similar to the relief provided by cool showers and baths.

4. Try a Cold Compress

While many remedies offer relief for the entire body, sometimes you need to target specific areas, like treating sunburn on your face.

For localized relief, apply a clean, damp towel or washcloth to the affected area. This cold compress can help numb pain, reduce itchiness, and provide instant relief from sunburn discomfort. However, avoid applying ice directly to your skin, as it can cause further damage and increase pain.

5. Avoid Scratching

It’s hard to resist scratching a sunburn itch, but doing so can actually hinder the healing process and make the sunburn feel worse.

Continuous scratching can disrupt your skin’s healing and increase pain and itchiness. It may even lead to infection, prolonging your recovery time.

Instead of scratching, try the sunburn remedies mentioned earlier, like using Aloe vera moisturizer, taking cool showers, or applying a cold compress.

If safe for you, consider taking a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory (NSAID) medicine like Ibuprofen to help reduce inflammation and discomfort associated with sunburn.

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