Springtime brings with it warm weather, blooming foliage, outdoor fun and time spent with your family and friends. A lot of your time is spent outdoors absorbing the sun, splashing through water and even camping. With all of the fun that can be had during these months you can lose focus on some of the important health and safety issues that can come with warm weather, such as sunburn and dehydration.
Sunburn can occur within 15 minutes of being outdoors. The UV rays of the Sun can penetrate through even the cloudiest of days and cause your child to develop a rosy, flushed face. This pinkish tint is the first sign that your child is developing a sunburn. Sunburn can range from mild symptoms such as a mere tinge of red on the skin and warmth to the touch, to more severe symptoms* such as blisters, fatigue, nausea and extreme discomfort. Be aware that sunburn can also cause dehydration.
To protect your child from sunburn, the CDC recommends that children wear sunscreen of at least SPF 15 or higher. Sunscreen should be re-applied through-out the day. Children are encouraged to wear hats to protect the sensitive area around their ears and necks and sunglasses to protect their eyes.
In the event that your child does get a sunburn, over-the-counter medications may be used to help with the discomfort. There are many lotions and gels that can be applied to the skin to help relieve the pain, heat and tightness that is experienced with a sunburn. Aloe is widely known for helping with sunburn symptoms. Always speak with your child’s doctor on what is acceptable treatment for your child’s sunburn as some children can react differently to over-the-counter treatments.
You may also use cool washcloths against the burned skin to provide relief as an alternative treatment for over-the-counter medications or lotions.
**In the event your child experiences severe symptoms: nausea, vomiting, fever, chills, fatigue or blisters, please take your child to the emergency room immediately. Sunburns can be just as damaging and deadly as burns caused by chemicals or fire.