sunburn treatment

Sunburn is a skin injury that results from excessive exposure to ultraviolet UVB (and to a lesser extent UVA) solar radiation. The two categories of radiation are based on wavelength of the solar light. It is important to understand how different skin coloration types react to sunlight, and plan sunscreen prevention accordingly.

Skin type Tanning/sunburn tendency
Red hair, freckles Always burns easily, no tanning
Fair skin, fair-haired, blue-eyed, white Usually burns, minimal tanning
Darker skinned white Sometimes burns, gradual light brown tan
Mediterranean Minimal to no burning, always tans
Middle eastern white, Latino Rarely burns, tans dark brown
Blacks Never burns, pigmented black

The treatment of sunburn includes cool compresses, as well as topical anti-itching medications such as Sarna™ or Aveeno Anti-Itch™ lotion. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprophen (Motrin™, Advil™) or naproxen (Alleve™ are helpful to relieve pain and inflammation. Steroid creams are beneficial, especially if a high-potency cream is combined with the oral anti-inflammatory drug.

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