6 On Your Side: Consumer Confidence, Sunburn Care and Prevention

(ABC 6 News) – Getting a sunburn is never fun. Your skin feels like it’s on fire and anything that touches you hurts, not to mention the potential long term health effects!

“Every time you get a sunburn, it ages your skin and it increases your risk for skin cancer,” Trisha Calvo from Consumer Reports said.

Preventing sunburns should be priority one, by wearing sunscreen and covering up.

But for those times you may have forgotten to apply sunscreen or even re-apply after a swim or working out and ended up getting a wicked burn, there are things you can do to help relieve the discomfort, like taking frequent cool baths or showers.

“As soon as you’re done bathing, pat yourself dry – don’t rub the towel against your skin. You want to leave your skin a little damp and then apply a moisturizer,” Calvo said.

Look for moisturizers that contain aloe vera or soy.

Since getting burned inflames the skin, taking an anti-inflammatory like aspirin or ibuprofen can help reduce swelling and alleviate any discomfort.

Be sure to also keep hydrated, even drinking more water than you usually do.

If your skin blisters, don’t pop or peel them. Allow them to heal.

And if you do go outside, cover up by wearing clothes that cover the burned areas, and stay in the shade as much as possible.

And to help prevent getting a sunburn in the first place – wear sunscreen!

A top performing sunscreen with a perfect score that’s also a CR Smart Buy, Coppertone Water Babies Lotion SPF 50. Despite its name, it can be used by adults as well.

Be sure to use a teaspoon per body part or area that’s not covered up with clothing. If you’re using a spray, hold the nozzle about an inch from your skin and spray until your skin glistens, then rub it in.

And for all types of sunscreens, reapply every two hours and after swimming.