So you’ve taken our online boater safety courses, you’re all geared up for your excursion on the water, ready to take the sea by storm and off you go!
However, in all your excitement and being caught up in having fun on your boat or jet ski, you forgot to apply or reapply sunblock. And now you’re turning into a tomato, your skin itches and feels sensitive, and everything hurts.
What causes sunburn? I wore sunblock and/or sunscreen.
Sunburn occurs due to prolonged exposure to the sun’s harsh UV rays. When you’re out too long under the sun, such as when playing outdoor sports, at the beach, doing outdoor work and chores, you’re exposed to harsh sunlight.
Sunblock and sunscreens function differently from each other, with one forming a physical barrier, the other filtering rays out.
Symptoms of sunburn include redness, swelling, possible blisters and sensitivity. If you’re experiencing any of these, you may have a sunburn, but if you’re still not sure, consult a physician.
I’ve got a sunburn. Now what?
Taking care of your skin after sunburn is crucial. As fast as sunburn can occur, its recovery can be quite slow. You‘ll need to be consistent with the aftercare in order to maximize healing and minimize recovery time.
1. Pop a painkiller
Do this ASAP, so you’re able to alleviate pain before it gets worse. An anti-inflammatory will help calm down your body’s reaction to the injury – a.k.a. the sunburn. However, avoid pain relievers that contain ingredients which can cause allergic reactions.
2. Keep skin cool
Shower, sit in an air-conditioned space, in front of a fan, wear light and airy clothing and thin materials to keep your skin cool. When you do shower though, be careful not to rub your skin dry or use rough loofahs.
3. Apply moisturizing gel or lotion or hydrocortisone cream
Keep your skin moisturized so it heals faster and more effectively. Use aloe Vera gel, calamine, or even soy to keep it healthy and promote faster healing. It’s important to do this, because sunburned skin is usually stripped of moisture; when you’re out of the shower, lather on your lotion for best effect. If that isn’t enough, get an OTC hydrocortisone cream.
4. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
Water is magical; make sure you’re hydrating plenty, especially after a burn, because your body needs to repair itself from the inside out. Plus, your skin needs the extra hydration too!
5. Resist the urge to pop blisters
Don’t. Do. It. As tempting as it is, just don’t do it. Avoid popping blisters and exacerbating your skin condition. Focus on the tips above.
Whether you’re out at the beach or on your boat, be sure to take care of yourself. Learn more about completing a boat safety course.