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Friday, July 23, 2021

Here’s why you should not peel the skin after a sunburn

It first starts with a burning sensation that quickly shifts to redness, mild swelling and pain. Then, as the skin starts to heal, it begins to peel.

By: Lifestyle Desk | New Delhi |
June 2, 2020 3:00:03 pm
skincare in summers, sunburn in summers, how to treat sunburn, skincare, indian express, indian express news While the skin does produce melanin, which protects it against UV rays, too much exposure to UV light can harm the natural defenses of the skin. (Source: Getty/Thinkstock)

With summers here, the skin is likely to react in different ways. Even if the majority of people are at home right now, they are still feeling the heat and trying to look for ways to beat it. The skin is delicate and reacts differently to different seasons and weather conditions. While in winters, it becomes dry and flaky, the summers are all about excessive sweating, oiliness and acne breakouts for some.

The other thing that is seen frequently in the hot weather, is sunburn, especially when you step out. You will notice that it first starts with a burning sensation that quickly shifts to redness, mild swelling and pain. Then, as the skin starts to heal, it begins to peel. This is when some people may feel the urge to remove the peel on their own, as opposed to letting it happen naturally. While it may feel uncomfortable, it is important to let the burn heal on its own, given that constant picking can make it worse.

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But why does it peel?

While the skin does produce melanin, which protects it against UV rays, too much exposure to UV light can harm the natural defenses of the skin. As such, it is seen that the UV light can damage the outermost layer of the skin, or the epidermis, by burning the cells. When the skin realises this, it begins to shed the damaged cells, so as to make way for new cells or skin. In cases of severe sunburn, peeling will happen and there will be no getting away from it. The only two things you can do is to avoid it completely, or let it peel away naturally.

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* Remember to not exfoliate your skin at this stage. Exfoliation can cause it to worsen, leading to more skin damage. The skin is extremely tender when it is healing from a sunburn. If you keep touching or rubbing it, it can even lead to infections.

* Serve your skin with all the moisturizing goodness. You need to keep the blood circulation going when it is raw and tender. As the new skin comes up, you cannot let it become dry. So keep applying coconut oil, or any other natural oil that can soothe the area and form a protective seal.

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* Always look for natural options, instead of relying on medicines and ointments. An ice cube compress can give you instant relief from the pain and the discomfort. Also, when it is healing, stay extra careful and away from the sun. Always wear a sunscreen when you have to step out.

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