Dealing with a sunburn and looking for quick sunburn relief? How long does it take for a sunburn to heal? At North County Health Services, we’ll help you understand more about sunburns and various sunburn remedies that you can use to give you quick sunburn relief and make a quick recovery. From minor to severe sunburn incidents, we can help.

Typically most sunburns won’t need medical attention. In fact, most sunburns can be treated with natural remedies or over-the-counter treatments. But in some cases, treatment may be required or may require medical attention. If you’re ever uncertain about your sunburn, never hesitate to give us a call or stop by our medical center.

Sunburn Relief

There are three stages of sunburns, ranging from first to second to third degree burns. Most types of sunburns don’t require medical attention, but more severe sunburns may. Learn more about the three stages and various sunburn remedies below:

The most common type of sunburn is a first-degree sunburn: most people experience this kind of sunburn on an annual basis, especially those that go outside regularly or visit the beach during holidays and vacations. Those with first degree sunburns will notice red skin, some pain, but you typically won’t have water blisters, nor much swelling.

Sunburn treatment for first degree sunburns often involves taking cool baths or showers with cool and low-pressure water. Applying aloe-based lotions can also help the relief and treatment process.

Second degree sunburns are a little more serious, but can oftentimes be treated at home without professional help. Like first degree burns, you’ll have red skin and some pain, but a second-degree burn will also have painful and unsightly water blisters.

Similarly, you can start the sunburn relief process with cool baths or low-pressure showers and aloe-based lotions. Be sure not to pop any of the water blisters, as they form a protective layer to prevent infection.

Third degree sunburns however are the most serious of the burns you can receive and will require medical attention and severe sunburn treatment. Third degree sunburns are pretty easy to identify as they are accompanied by substantial pain, redness of the skin, swelling, tightness of skin, blisters that are more than 2 inches in diameter, and white patches of skin within the area of skin that is sunburned.

You might be trying to figure out what to do for severe sunburn, especially if you’ve been out at the beach or otherwise out in the sun for a long time. The first thing to do when you notice you have a third-degree sunburn, start by getting out of the sun.

You’ll want to locate the nearest hospital to visit to treat your third-degree sunburn. In the meantime, if you can cool off with a cool (but not frigid) shower, bath, or a cool compress. Make sure to be drinking extra fluid for a few days. Take pain medication as needed. Aloe gel and moisturizer can be helpful. When going outside, make sure to cover the sunburnt areas completely and wear loose, flowing clothing.

For all degrees of sunburns, it’s important to take action as soon as you possibly can. The earlier you notice it and take corrective action to treat your sunburn, the easier and quicker the recovery process is and the less damage you’ll cause to your body by staying out in the sun or leaving it untreated.

Summary of Sunburn Treatment

The moment you notice you have a sunburn, go through the following to ensure that you avoid any further sun damage and start the recovery process:

1.) Get out of the sun. If you have to go outdoors, wear loose clothing and cover your skin as much as possible. Sunglasses and wide brim hats can be helpful.

2.) Ingest fluids regularly. Drink some water as soon as you get out of the sun, because a sunburn indicates that your body is dehydrated, even if it doesn’t feel like it. Over the next few days, drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated and avoid alcoholic drinks and sodas.

3.) Keep the affected areas cool. Cool baths, low pressure showers, and cool compresses can be helpful.

4.) Keep the affected areas moisturized. Regularly apply aloe vera based lotions or gels and avoid butter or petroleum-based products (which clog the pores).

5.) Take over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication for pain. Naproxen, Ibuprofen, or Tylenol are helpful for reducing the pain associated with your sunburn. Make sure to take as directed.

For anything more severe, make sure to contact a medical professional immediately.

Have a sunburn and need sunburn treatment? Our team at North County Health Services can help with the treatment and recovery process of any sunburn, from first to third degree burns. Find a nearby location to get treatment for your sunburn when it’s convenient for you. If you have a more severe sunburn, contact us immediately or visit the nearest hospital to get severe sunburn treatment. Don’t delay if you think you might have a third-degree sunburn.