Breaking Down Sun Poisoning, Sunburn, and How To Treat Both

Nearly everyone knows the feeling of coming home from the beach to discover a red patch on their skin. While most cases of sunburn are mild and resolve on their own, sun poisoning can be much more serious.

In this article, we aim to answer the question what is sun poisoning, explain the difference between sun poisoning and sunburn, and outline common symptoms of sun poisoning.

What Is Sun Poisoning

Sun poisoning is a severe case of sunburn that comes with additional symptoms. Sunburn and sun poisoning are both caused by exposure to UV light. These rays are naturally found in sunlight and can also come from non-natural sources, such as heat lamps and tanning beds.

As skin is exposed to these rays, your skin cells become damaged. This is why the skin usually peels after a sunburn heals. That is your body’s way of removing the damaged cells to leave healthy skin.

Sun Poisoning vs. Sunburn

Sunburn and sun poisoning can be difficult to distinguish. This is because sun poisoning has all the symptoms of sunburn. Typical sunburn symptoms include:

  • Redness on the skin
  • Itching
  • Warmth
  • Sensitivity to touch

Symptoms of Sun Poisoning

Cases of sun poisoning will include all the symptoms above, but will also involve other more serious symptoms. The symptoms of sun poisoning include:

  • Blisters
  • Severe skin redness
  • Dehydration
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness/confusion
  • Fainting

When To Visit an Urgent Care for Sun Poisoning

If you suspect that you have sun poisoning, visit an urgent care as soon as possible. At Live Urgent Care, our board-certified providers diagnose and treat sun poisoning to help you experience quick relief. You can walk in or book ahead at any of our urgent care clinics today.

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