What is the Best Treatment for a Bad Sunburn?

June 22, 2022

Sunburns happen to millions of people each year. As people visit tropical locations for vacations, they increase their chance of getting sunburnt. Sunburns are caused by too much exposure to UV rays. They can happen from the sun itself or artificial sun such as tanning beds. It’s possible to get sunburnt when it’s cloudy, it does not need to be sunny.

AFC Urgent Care Paramus provides sunburn treatment to all patients in need. We’re also able to treat minor cases of dehydration and other sun-related conditions. Our doctors are board-certified, so patients receive the highest quality care every time. Visit our walk-in center today for treatment.


When to Receive Medical Care & Risk Factors

Some sunburns are very mild and don’t require any additional treatment other than some aloe vera. However, there are signs you should look for that indicate a person with a sunburn is in need of medical care. Visit your doctor or AFC Paramus if:

  • The sunburn develops blistering
  • It’s causing swelling
  • Shows signs of infection
  • Doesn’t improve within a few days

Emergency medical treatment is required if the patient has a fever over 103, is showing signs of dehydration, has fainted, or is confused. Emergency medical care is necessary for more severe cases, as ERs have the necessary equipment. AFC Urgent Care Paramus is used as an ER alternative for moderate cases.

Some patients are more likely to get sunburnt than others. The following risk factors for sunburns include:

  • Having light skin, light eyes, or red or blond hair
  • Working outdoors
  • Vacationing in sunny places, or warm altitudes
  • Swimming, or getting the skin wet
  • Drinking alcohol outdoors
  • Regularly exposing unprotected skin
  • Taking photosensitizing medications


At-Home Treatments for Sunburns

Treatments are only available after someone gets a sunburn. They’re used to help treat the discomfort. The actual skin and sunburn cannot be repaired with anything, only time. Some at-home treatment options include:

  • Over-the-counter pain relievers such as Advil, Motrin, or Aleve to help with pain and swelling.
  • Cool the skin with a clean, damp towel several times a day
  • Apply aloe vera gel or calamine lotion
  • Drink water
  • Don’t break any blisters that have formed
  • Continue to moisturize any peeling skin
  • Take oral antihistamines to prevent any itching while the sunburn heels
  • Protect your skin from further sun exposure


Potential Medical Treatments for Sunburns

There are not many medical treatments that are used for sunburns. If your skin is not responding to any at-home care, you should be seen by a medical provider. After being seen by a medical provider, your doctor may prescribe a corticosteroid cream for smaller areas or prednisone for larger areas.

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Call (201) 262-2010 for more information about our Paramus urgent care services.

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