Understanding The Progression of A Sunburn

Even when we have the best intentions in place to protect ourselves, we can’t always avoid sunburn. This isn’t helped by the fact it doesn’t have to be a blistering hot day to suffer from sunburn, it can happen even when it is relatively cold outside and even slightly overcast. With this in mind, it is so important that you not only continually reapply sunscreen but that you also understand the progression of a sunburn.

What is Sunburn Damage

Sunburn damage is caused to your skin by UV rays. Many people, however, don’t realize just how serious sunburn is.  One of the main reasons for this is there is a general idea that sunburn is a suntan whereas, in reality, sunburn is exactly what it is called – a burn to your skin and, just like other burns to your skin, it can be classified in three different stages, which are first, second and third.

The Three Stages of Sunburn

The First Stage – Most commonly happens when you don’t even realize you are burning. Your skin will look slightly damaged, usually turning a lighter shade of red. With this stage, you basically just need to keep the skin moist but avoid products that contain alcohol as they will dry your skin out.

The second Stage – Well, things generally go from bad to worse when you are suffering second stage sunburn. As well as your skin being quite red and hot to the touch, you will also start to develop some small blisters. With the blisters, you will also suffer from peeling skin and the whole stage can be rather painful.

The Third Stage – No one should ever let their sunburn damage escalate any further but, still, some people do experience stage three of sunburn, which is not only the most painful but also dangerous. It is important that you seek sunburn relief through medical attention as you will be suffering from large water filled blisters and skin eruptions. Both of these things can cause wide-spread infections and cellular damage.

The Side Effects of Sunburn

All stages of sunburn are dangerous and can cause unwanted side effects such as fever, nausea, flu-like symptoms, blistering, skin loss and premature skin aging as well as an aggravation of underlying skin disorders such as eczema, dehydration, burns, infection, shock from fluid loss, and even death.

How to Avoid Sunburn Damage

In order to prevent any of the above sunburn damage from happening, it is important that you apply sunscreen frequently. Depending on your skin type, you should be using SPF 15 or higher in order to protect your skin correctly. You may also want to consider the use of hats and appropriate clothing when you are out in the sun as, let’s face it, we can’t avoid the sun completely.

If you are unfortunately seeking sunburn relief, it is important that you apply a cool compress to the affected area but be careful that you don’t puncture any blisters if they are present as this could lead to infection. Soothing lotions can also be used to take the pain and heat out of the burn.

If you are worried about sunburn damage, or if it looks as though it has progressed to stage three, it is important that you seek medical help in order to correctly deal with your symptoms and get your skin back on track.

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