Sunburns result from the skin being damaged by the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. Most sunburns are first-degree burns and only affect the outer layer of skin, resulting in minor pain and redness. These are easily treated at home. However, sunburn that is red, painful, and swells up into blisters (a second-degree burn), means that deep skin layers and nerve endings have been damaged and may require a doctor's intervention to heal.
A baby or a toddler with a sunburn can be heartbreaking. They do not understand why they are in pain and all you can do as a parent is treat their symptoms while their skin heals. Following these few steps can help you soothe your child's discomfort.
Treat sunburn as you would any other burn:
- Cool down the skin with plain water compresses.
- Treat the pain with Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen (Motrin).
- Topical Hydrocortisone cream may or may not help. Store the cream in the refrigerator for an extra cooling effect going on the skin.
- Use Aloe Vera Gel as a soothing lotion.
- If skin blisters are present, DO NOT pop them, as this can lead to a skin infection.