When it is a sunny day at the park or the beach - the beauty of it all makes you forget about how harmful extremely strong amounts of sunlight is. As children are still growing, they can be very sensitive to things around them. Read about the 9 ways how you can easily treat your child’s sunburn either medically or through remedies right at home.
What is a sunburn?
A sunburn is a skin condition that has three stages to it:
- your child’s skin is red, warm, sore and tender
- your child’s skin may flake and peel after a few days
- usually, after 7 days, your child’s skin will fully heal
Sunburn in babies and children
Your little ones may not have extreme reactions to a sunburn - which does not last too long. Yet it is important to prevent and treat your child’s sunburn. One of the biggest signs to notice is overheating. Here are 9 ways you can avoid other skin conditions that can occur in the future.
1. Get inside
The indoors will provide a cool and shady effect on the sunburn, without the presence of the strong sun. You should try your best to stop any sunlight from coming inside. In addition, you can try to use a soft cloth material to keep the sunburnt areas covered. Loose clothing also works best for your child. This prevents the sunburn from becoming worse than it is already and heal in a positive speed.
You can cool your child’s skin easily by having a cold bath/shower. Just make sure to not make the water extremely cold. In addition, do not scrub your child’s skin and avoid using bath oils, soap, or bubble. This is also something you should avoid while drying your child as this can increase the symptoms of the sunburn.
Sometimes a simple sponging with cold water, ice cold pack or holding a cold flannel to the sunburn can help heal faster. Remember that direct contact of ice might lead to frostbite and more damage. So, make sure to cover the ice pack with a soft and safe cloth material.
Doctors also say that drinking plenty of fluids can cool your child’s body down - preventing other problems like dehydration. Teethers should be breastfed while older children can have water or formula.
3. Medical treatments
Many cases of sunburn in children and babies have easily healed by the use of either lotions or medicines. Lotions containing aloe vera will soothe and moisturise your child’s skin immediately. Calamine lotion is a good remedy to reduce your child’s sunburn. Sometimes blisters can pop before you can provide any strong treatment. Using child-safe antiseptic ointments is very helpful.
Although painkillers are not advisable for children under 16, doctor may strongly advise medication in emergency cases. Ones like ibuprofen or paracetamol easily help relieve the pain of a sunburn.
4. Aloe vera
The gel from aloe vera has positive properties of lessening discomfort, increasing healing and moisturization of your child’s skin. You can either directly and slowly apply the gel by splitting leaf or buy a safe medicinal gel from a medical shop.
This sweet and sticky food is a topical burn salve which has been proved to always be the best remedy. It reduces any form of infection and pain when applied slowly on your child’s sunburnt skin. In fact, it is much better at faster healing than any of the new antibiotic creams. Just be sure to avoid this remedy with babies younger than 12 months. If they eat honey by mistake there could be allergic reactions to their body.
6. Ground oatmeal
A mixture of ground oatmeal and water acts as a strong anti-inflammatory. Taking the ground oatmeal, blend it in a food processor until it is smooth and fine. Then, mix the paste with tepid bath water. Slowly soak your child’s body in the water mixture.
Milk contains a protein that creates a healing layer, decreasing any discomfort or heat. Place a soft cloth dipped in cool milk on the red areas of your child’s sunburn.
8. Baking soda or cornstarch
When soaking your child in the bath, adding a mix of either baking soda or cornstarch will help relieve any form of inflammation and itching.
9. Advice with a doctor
While most cases of sunburns can be easily treated at home, many babies or children need stronger medical advice to treat the sunburn better. You must visit a doctor as soon as possible if:
- Your child is younger than 1 years
- You strongly feel your child is very badly unwell or sick
- Your child seems to be extremely sensitive to the sunburn, feeling severe pain
- Your child is badly burnt over a large area
- Your child’s body is severely blistering/swelling
- Your child has chills, lethargy and a high fever of 38°C or above
- Your child is experiencing dizziness and headaches
Medical cases will require specific burn cream and dressings that will help in keeping the sunburn better treated. Many times children might need to stay back a few days for their better safety at the hospital if the sunburn is highly severe.
In the end, having fun outside is important. Just enjoy with little precautions to keep everyone safe ladies!