With summer just around the corner, most of us will want to enjoy spending more time outside. The thing is, too much sun exposure is harmful and may cause sunburn.
Sunburn affects individuals of any skin type, with children and individuals with fair skin being most severely affected. It is only a part of the damage caused when skin is exposed to too much UV radiation from the sun and repeated sunburns may give rise to long term skin damage including premature ageing and skin cancer.
Prevention is Better than Cure
Avoiding the sun is the best way to prevent sunburn. It is recommended to stay in the shade or indoors between 10am and 4pm when the sun is shining brightest.
Wear a sunhat to cover your head, face and neck. Sunglasses protect your eyes, as well as the sensitive skin around them. Although wearing a lot of clothing in the heat is unpleasant, loose-fitting clothes is a great way to prevent sun burn.
Sunscreen is essential to prevent sun damage; it should be applied before going out into the sun as well as every two to three hours throughout the day and after swimming, as it can wash off. Sunscreens have Sun Protection Factors ranging from low to high, with a rating of 30 and above considered high protection however in our sunny climate it is always advisable to opt for very high protection which is a factor 50+.
Luckily there is a sunscreen for every skin type as well as different sunscreens for your body and face. Facial sunscreens tend to be lighter, more quickly absorbed leaving the skin less white and less shiny. Sunscreen creams tend to be better for dry skin whilst fluids would suit oily skin better since they are less greasy and do not block pores
Safety is very important when choosing a sunscreen especially if you have sensitive skin; choose the ones that have no perfumes or preservatives and that are clinically tested.
Treatment – if Needed
We all know the ‘rules’ but unfortunately when having too much fun in the sun, we tend to forget to reapply sunscreen or leave parts of your body exposed for too long. So what can we do to soothe the pain and the burn?
Sunburn can range from slight redness of the skin to sore, blistered skin. Treating it as soon as possible is important. Cooling the burn with a cold damp towel will soothe any soreness. Drinking water is vital to help hydrate your body and skin which will help treat any burnt areas. Applying a soothing after-sun lotion will help to cool and repair the superficial damage caused to the skin. Many skin experts suggest putting the after-sun in the fridge for that extra cooling factor which offers a lot of relief.
If you have any blisters, do not attempt to remove them – leave them to heal on their own and do not peel off the skin once this starts peeling.
La Roche-Posay Can Help
The Anthelios range from LA Roche-Posay offers different types of sunscreen including fluid, lotion, gel and spray as well as a range specifically for children. All products are dermatologically tested, fragrance free and have no parabens making them suitable even for very sensitive skin.
Posthelios melt-in gel is an after-sun product that soothes the burn and hydrates the skin after too much sun exposure.