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Natural Ways To Treat Your Child’s Sunburn

written by: AngelaC • edited by: Lisa Lambson • updated: 7/22/2009

Most children experience a sunburn at least once in their lifetime. By recognizing it early and utilizing simple ways to treat sunburn promptly you can easily reduce the amount of discomfort your child will feel. Read further to find out about the many natural ways to treat sunburn safely at home.

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    What Is Sunburn

    Sunburn is your skin burning due to overexposure of ultraviolet radiation. The first sign of sunburn is your child’s skin turning pink and then red. This happens about 2 to 6 hours after being exposed to the sun unprotected. Your child’s skin may feel hot and irritated. At 12 to 24 hours, you child will experience the peak effects of sunburn. Children who have freckles, moles or fair skin are more likely to get sunburned. Most children are overexposed to ultraviolet radiation during regular daily playtime activities, and this is the most damaging to your child’s skin. However, there are many ways to treat sunburn.

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    Natural Ways To Treat Sunburn

    When you realize your child is sunburned it is important to immediately get them out of the sun and cover any exposed skin. If possible, have your child soak in a bathtub full of cool water for about 15 minutes. Pat dry gently with a soft towel and use a fragrance-free moisturizing lotion. If you are unable to get them into a tub, make a cool compress with equal parts milk and water and apply to the sunburned areas. Using natrual cooling gels like Aloe Vera gel are very soothing ways to treat sunburn. Apply the gel liberally to the sunburned areas frequently to keep their skin from drying out. Make sure to give your child extra fluids for the next 2 to 3 days to keep them well hydrated. Expect full recovery in 5 to 7 days,

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    Ways to Prevent Sunburn

    During the summer it is important for children to spend time playing outside and avoiding the sun is not always practical. Along with the natural ways to treat sunburn, there are many ways to avoid the sun and its damaging effects. If possible, have your child wear a wide-brimmed hat, long-sleeved shirts and/or long pants. If the weather is too warm, using a children’s sun block lotion according to the directions can protect your child. The sun can still cause a sunburn even on cloudy or cool days, so make sure your child uses sun block every time they are going to be outside for an extended period of time.

    Keep in mind that if your child experiences severe pain, severe blistering, headaches, confusion, nausea, vomiting or fainting, you should take your child to your hospital's emergency room for immediate treatment.

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    Disclaimer

    Please read this disclaimer regarding the information contained within this article.

    Photo Credit: babybodyguards.com