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Sunburns – Dr. David Long

IBS Summary

• Sunburns should be treated with care.

• Avoid sun exposure to allow skin to heal.

• Cool the skin with a cold bath/shower and gentle soap.

• Apply compresses and light moisturizer w/ aloe vera.

• Avoid popping blisters, heavy moisturizers, or pulling of flaking skin. 

• Stay hydrated with water and consider taking ibuprofen for relief from inflammation/pain. 


• Seek medical help if symptoms worsen.

Full Text

Ah, sunburns. I get it. It can be easy to forget to apply or reapply sunscreen when you’re out on the water or enjoying the warm weather and didn’t realize how long you were outdoors. It happens, but now that you are as red as a lobster, how do you get relief from the sunburn? 

First, understand that a sunburn is like any other burn and should be treated as such with great care. Second, try following these steps. 

  1. Stay out of the sun. Your skin has just been roasted and needs time to heal. 

  2. Take a cold bath or shower. Cooling the skin can help relieve some of the pain. Wash with a hydrating soap, not an exfoliant or a harsh soap. To remove any sunscreen, dirt, or oil from the skin, don’t scrub but gently wash and rinse the area afterwards.

  3. Apply moist cool compresses if needed. 

  4. Apply a light moisturizer. Make sure it contains aloe vera as it helps the skin cool and relieve some of the pain and help in the restoring process. 

  5. Avoid any heavy moisturizers as they tend to trap in heat. 

  6. Do not pop blisters or pull off flaking skin as this can lead to infection or more irritation. 

  7. Drink lots of water to stay hydrated.

If your pain is unbearable and your doctor recommends it, consider taking ibuprofen to relieve some of the inflammation and pain. If your sunburn gets worse or if you start feeling other symptoms, don’t hesitate to call your doctor. 


I’m Dr. David Long, that was the long story short.

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