Great Ways to Heal Your Summer Burns

By Vincenza Parella

Flickr/melz

Summer may be winding down, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any more sunshine to soak up. Unless, of course, your skin can’t handle more rays after a long three months of sunbathing. Sunburns will certainly ruin a perfectly good day in the sun; they’re itchy, painful and embarrassing, yet there are many ways to prevent and treat them.

Sunburns tend to be first-degree burns, which are marked by redness and only affect the outer layer of skin. At-home or store-bought remedies can be used to fix these symptoms, though one should proceed with caution, as more severe burns require more attention and occasionally different treatment. Second-degree burns mainly involve the layer of skin below the outer epidermis and usually cause blistering. Third-degree burns are the worst since they damage all parts of the skin, and can be life threatening.

To treat first-degree burns, there are a myriad of lotions and medications available at most drugstores. Before applying an ointment or other product, immerse the affected area in water at room temperature. Then apply aloe vera, which can also be purchased at a local CVS or Walgreens. Be sure to avoid applying any oil-based substances to the burned area, since substances such as these can also negatively affect the burn. If there is pain, anti-inflammatory pain relievers such as ibuprofen are available at drugstores and can help subside the pains caused by the burn during treatment.

Before the invention of sunscreen or burn relief creams, people have managed to get by without having to use them because there were already natural treatments for such things. Many such remedies have long since been forgotten because they can now be bought at a store and are therefore more obsolete. However, few recognize that a lot of these natural fixes can be found at home.

One can skip the aloe vera bottle and go straight for the plant to get the least diluted, most effective treatment. All you do is slice off a fleshy area of the plant, cut slits into it and apply the gel to the burn. Aloe plants can be found at any gardening store for around $10 each.

Normally used to sweeten food, honey also has amazing healing abilities. According to Dr. Andrew Weil, M.D., honey has “soothing, antiseptic and healing” qualities that can be beneficial when treating a sunburn. More information on using honey as a natural medicine can be found at drweil.com.

With all of these natural and affordable remedies, no one has to suffer anymore. Just take a look around your fridge or any dining common and you can find natural remedies to soothe your sunbaked skin.

Vincenza Parella can be reached at [email protected]