Sunburn can be a serious health concern – did you know that the dangers of sunburn go beyond the cosmetic problems of redness and irritation? For example, sunburn increases your risk of skin cancer and it can make you look old before your time. When your skin is damaged by the sun’s UV rays, the skin cells are broken and the blood vessels damaged. Sunburn takes a few hours following sun exposure for the effects to show, but during this time the skin is being affected. Here’s how sunburns damage your skin and what you can do to prevent sunburn occurring.
- Sunburn: Cosmetic Effects
Sunburn does not look great. For a start, the redness and blistering is unattractive and painful. But when this redness has faded, the skin is still marked – sunburned skin turns leathery and is usually drier and can remain discolored. Sunburn can cause skin conditions like psoriasis to get worse.
- Premature Aging From Sunburn
When your skin is burned the cells and tissues are damaged, making them less elastic and weaker. You see fine lines, deep wrinkles, freckles, age spots, sagging skin, and rough patches on the skin. When you repeatedly burn your skin it looks older than it actually is.
- Skin Cancer and Sunburn
The biggest health problem to come from sunburn is skin cancer. If you are never sunburned and you protect yourself from exposure to the sun then you reduce your risk of suffering from skin cancer. While you may not want to stay out of the sun completely, if you prevent sunburn then you help protect your skin from cancer in a big way. It is especially important to keep children safe in the sun – repeated sunburns in childhood dramatically increase the risk of skin cancer as an adult.
- Sunburn: Infection
You may also suffer from an infection if you have sunburn because the skin is broken and blistered. Prevent infection problems by protecting broken skin with a wound dressing and keeping the area clean and dry.
- Eye Damage from Sunburn
Your eyes can also get burned by UV rays. Prevent eye problems by wearing sunglasses that block UV rays and keeping out of the sun when it is at its strongest.
In order to prevent sunburn from occurring, make sure you wear sunscreen, a wide brimmed hat, sunglasses, and long-sleeved clothes. Stay out of direct sunlight when the sun is at its strongest.