Peeling Skin From Sunburn - Reasons, Signs & Prevention

Sunburn Peeling – Causes, Symptoms and Prevention

Sunburn comes in many different varieties, and you may not realize this, however. When your skin is exposed to the sun’s UV radiation, you run the risk of getting a sunburn, the most frequent of which is a painful burn. We think you are already aware that it isn’t great for your skin. In most cases, the highest part of your body will burn to your arms. Severe sunburn and beach burn are only two of the sunburn varieties.  In this post, we will concentrate on sunburn, its causes, and how to get rid of peeling skin from sunburn.

What Is Sunburn?

A sunburn is characterized by red, painful skin that is hot to the touch. Sunburn occurs after just a few hours of excessive UV exposure, whether from the sun or artificial sources like sunlamps or tanning beds. Sunburn may usually be treated using at-home remedies, but it may take a while for the sunburn to fade.

Causes of Skin Peel After Sunburn

Most of us are not aware of the genuine cause against why does sunburn peel. Overexposure to the sun’s damaging UV-B rays damages the DNA in your skin cells. An overloaded body’s natural UV defences result in a painful and unpleasant sunburn. And the DNA damage to your skin cells causes dead skin cells to flake off, resulting in skin peeling.

Risk Factors

Is it wrong to peel sunburn? Well, yes! Most people are unaware of the various kinds of UV radiation or how harmful it is to your health. The sun produces a more significant amount of UV radiation than any other natural source of radiation. Read on to learn more about sunburn’s risk factors.

  • Having a light skin tone, blue eyes, and red or blonde hair
  • Somewhere in the mountains that is bright, warm, and high.
  • Working outside in the beautiful outdoors
  • You should avoid swimming or spraying water on your body since wet skin burns faster than dry skin.
  • Combining liquor with outdoor activities
  • Exposure to UV rays from the sun or artificial sources such as tanning beds.
  • Use of medicines that increase your susceptibility to spontaneous combustion (photosensitizing medications)

Symptoms of Sunburn on Skin

Sunburn symptoms and signs usually appear after a few hours of being exposed to direct sunlight. The severity of the sunburn, on the other hand, may take a day or more to determine.

Some signs and symptoms of sunburn are as follows:

  • Skin tone changes, such as pinkness or dryness, are common.
  • Touching warm or hot skin can be dangerous.
  • Soreness, swelling, and pain
  • Pain and swelling
  • Zits with a small amount of liquid and a predisposition to rupture
  • If the sunburn is severe, it can cause headaches, fever, nausea, and fatigue.
  • Eye stinging or itching is a common complaint.

Within a few days, the damaged skin’s top layer may begin to peel away, and your body may start to heal itself. Your skin may appear uneven in color and pattern for a short period after peeling. It may take several days for a severe sunburn to heal.

What Happens to Skin When It Gets Sunburnt?

It is conceivable that the skin cells will die if exposed to more UV light than they can handle. Dilated blood vessels enhance skin circulation and send immune cells to assist in clearing up any problem that has been produced as a consequence of this dilatation of blood vessel dilation. Sunburn results in redness, swelling, and pain in the afflicted region as a result of this.


Frequent, intense sun exposure increases skin damage and illness risk. Photoaging, precancerous lesions, and skin cancer are examples. Some of the other complications are:

1. Ageing skin

Skin ageing is brought on by sunburn.

2. Tissue loss

Tissue damage as a result of solar exposure

3. Wrinkles

Skin suffers from wrinkles induced by sunburn

4. Skin rash

A rash on the skin caused by sunburn

5. Skin irritations

Redness in face, nose, and ear veins caused owing to excessive sun exposure.

6. Freckles

Freckles on the face and shoulders

7. Skin patches

Dark or discolored patches on your face, hands, arms, chest, or upper back.

8. Skin lesions

Precancerous skin lesions come with tough, scaly spots on sun-damaged skin.

9. Epidermis malignancy

Skin cancer or the danger of skin cancers like melanoma increases by too much sunlight exposure.

10. Eye-sight issues

The sunlight may also cause damage to your eyes.

How Long Does the Peeling Last After Sunburn?

Your skin will typically begin to crumble and detach within three days of being burned if you’ve already been injured. It’s possible that the flaking will last for several days or even weeks after it starts.

Simple Ways to Treat Sunburn Peeling Once It Starts

Simple Ways to Treat Sunburn Peeling Once It Starts

Peeling skin after sunburn can lead to you wanting to peel the skin off. However, it is certainly not advisable to do so. So, why is it bad to peel sunburn? It leads to open wounds that can infect it and cause further problems. Instead, here are some treatment alternatives and ideas to help you stop peeling once it has started.

1. Take a pain reliever

To relieve pain, use an over-the-counter (OTC) drug such as ibuprofen or aspirin. These medications help you heal quicker by decreasing the discomfort and redness that surrounds your sunburn. They may also assist in relieving the pain associated with a sunburn.

2. Massage the afflicted region with a soothing anti-inflammatory lotion

Apply a topical anti-inflammatory therapy to your sunburns, such as aloe vera gel or cortisone lotion. If you are not allergic to aspirin, you may crush a few aspirin tablets into a fine powder and combine it with just enough water to create a goopy paste. You should use this on tanned areas of your body. Avoid petroleum-based or other oil-based lotions on your skin since they may trap heat, exacerbating your sunburn and peeling. To assist seal in moisture, moisturize as soon as you get out of the shower or bath while your skin is still damp.

3. Take a soothing bath

Bathe in a cold bath (just below lukewarm). This may help to relieve the pain of your sunburn while also avoiding additional peeling of your skin. You should avoid bathing if your skin is blistering as well as peeling since bathing may cause your blisters to rupture and cause additional peeling. It is not advisable to use soaps or bath oils when bathing. These may aggravate your peeling symptoms.

4. To alleviate tension, use a cold compress

Apply a cool, wet compress to your skin for 20 to 30 minutes to reduce irritation and prevent peeling. Take care not to put ice directly on your skin, as this may cause additional discomfort.

Is It Safe to Exfoliate Peeling Skin After Sunburn?

As the skin heals after a sunburn, you should not exfoliate it with chemicals or mechanical methods. Using products that include alpha-hydroxy acids, retinoids, glycolic acid, or salicylic acid may irritate and harm burnt skin and the fragile skin rebuilding below the scorched skin. You should avoid using skin-scrubbing exfoliants and cleansers containing grains until the skin has completely healed.

Home Remedies to Get Rid of Sunburn

There is little you can do to avoid additional skin damage after sunburn has occurred.

However, the following recommendations may assist in reducing your pain, get relief from peeling skin from sunburn, swelling, and discomfort:

  1. Use a pain reliever: To relieve pain, take an over-the-counter pain reliever such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, and others) or naproxen sodium (Aleve) as soon as possible after being exposed to the sun. Some pain relievers come in the shape of gels that you apply to your skin.
  2. The skin should be kept cold: Apply a clean towel soaked with cold tap water to the inflamed region of the skin. Alternatively, take a cold bath with baking soda (about 2 ounces (60 grams) per tub). Apply ice to the skin many times a day.
  3. Use a moisturizer: To keep your skin moisturized, use a moisturizer, lotion, or gel. A soothing cream or gel with aloe vera or calamine may be helpful.
  4. Do not break blisters that are still intact: You should cleanse a broken blister with mild soap and water. The wound should subsequently be treated with antibiotic ointment and covered with a non-stick bandage.
  5. Flaking skin: Within a few days, the affected area may begin to peel. This is your body’s way of getting rid of the damaged skin on the skin’s surface. Keep your skin hydrated at all times if it is flaking.
  6. To alleviate itching, use an anti-itch medicine: Oral antihistamines, such as diphenhydramine, may help reduce itching as the skin peels away and heals beneath the surface.
  7. Apply a corticosteroid lotion to the afflicted region: If the sunburn is mild to moderate, apply an over-the-counter corticosteroid cream to the affected area.
  8. Avoid using ‘-caine’ products, such as benzocaine, on your skin: Such lotions may irritate the skin or cause an allergic reaction. A link has been discovered between benzocaine and a rare but potentially deadly illness in which the amount of oxygen transported by the blood is decreased.
  9. Stay out of sunlight: Keep your sunburned skin from becoming worse by staying out of the sunlight. While your skin is healing, avoid exposure to the sun, or use sunscreen if you must be out in the sun.
  10. Drink water: Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water.

How to Prevent Sunburn In The Right Way

There are multiple ways to prevent and heal sunburn, including topical application of relievers and consuming certain medicines. Some of these include:

1. Cold compress

Apply a cold compress or take a cold shower to the afflicted region.

2. Aloe-Vera

Apply aloe vera or a moisturizer to the skin. The use of the appropriate moisturizer may help to speed up the healing process and reduce peeling.

3. Medicated honey

Medicated honey is medical-grade honey that will be available at your local pharmacy. This over-the-counter honey is excellent for use in treating medical problems.

4. Anti-inflammatory medication

Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like aspirin or ibuprofen may help relax the skin and relieve some of the pain associated with sunburn.

5. Take an oatmeal bath

Colloidal oatmeal may assist in reducing edema due to its anti-inflammatory properties. It also helps the skin retain moisture, which aids in the healing process.

6. Try staying indoors

Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., when it is at its brightest. Alternatively, spend as much time as possible in the shade during that period.

7. Wear hats or scarves

If you don’t have sunscreen, protect yourself from the sun by wearing wide-brimmed hats, long sleeves, and long pants.

8. Sunscreen application

Even if you’re inside or driving, apply sunscreen since you may still get a sunburn via windows and other holes.

When to Contact a Doctor

If you experience any of the symptoms listed below, you should immediately consult your primary care physician or a board-certified dermatologist.

  • A burn often results in blisters covering more than 20% of your body’s surface area, which is rather typical. The severity of your burns will be determined by your doctor, who will decide whether or not more treatment is required. The doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications or medicated lotions to aid in the healing process, as well as surgical intervention if your condition turns severe.
  • The burn might cause a high temperature, chills, and nausea, all common adverse effects. There is a possibility that these are signs of sun poisoning, which may necessitate IV fluids to treat severe dehydration. You may require pain relievers such as steroids or other medications to alleviate the agony.
  • When you have an infection, you will notice swelling and pus on your skin, as well as blisters that turn yellow or red over time, which are all signs of an infection. It is essential to remove the sunburnt skin from your body to avoid exposing the new skin beneath it to microorganisms. You may require antibiotics if this results in an infection that requires treatment.

Fortunately, the vast majority of sunburns heal on their own over time. Getting medical attention is recommended if you suffer from a severe or recurrent sunburn. Your primary care physician will likely be the first place you go for help. Preparing for your visit begins with making a list of your current medications, including any vitamin supplements, herbal remedies, and over-the-counter medications (if applicable). Certain medications may increase your sensitivity to ultraviolet radiation.

Also Read:

How to Remove Dead Skin From Body and Face
Uneven Skin Tone Problems
How to Remove Skin Pigmentation Naturally

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