Sunburn Treatment Specialist in Los Banos, CA
After spending a day out, it is a case of sunburn if you suffer from inflamed skin, swelling, small fluid-filled blisters, headache, fever, nausea, and fatigue. Dr. Raminder Mand, MD, is our primary care specialists at Los Banos Primary Care. She will evaluate if your burn is third-degree and then treat you accordingly. It is essential to get immediate care for sunburn as it can cause heatstroke. For more information, contact us or book an appointment, or simply walk-in to 1120 West I Street, Suite#B, Los Banos, CA 93635.
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Sunburns are the red skin or patches that show up as a result of exposure to the sun and may also be painful. It can take a few hours after exposure to the ultraviolet rays for the sunburn to appear in some cases, so people don’t realize they have a sunburn until it is too late. Sunburns aren’t just caused by exposure to the natural sun, they can also be caused by an artificial source.
When skin is exposed to UV light, it produces melanin faster than normal to form a layer of protection on top of the skin against the UV rays. Melanin is a pigment that determines a person’s skin tone and is found in the outer layer of the skin. When melanin production increases, it causes the skin to tan, and the tanned skin provides a layer of protection against the UV rays to prevent sunburn. However, this layer can only provide so much natural protection, and when the skin is exposed to more UV light than the melanin can protect against, it will cause the skin to form a sunburn.
Sunburns, like other burns, are classified into 3 different buckets, characterized by the depth and severity of the damage that the sunburn causes to the skin.
• The first and least severe classification is first-degree sunburn. The epidermis, which is the outermost skin layer, is the only layer affected by sun damage in the case of a first-degree burn. This sunburn will heal naturally within a week and transition to a tan as the sunburnt skin naturally flakes off.
• The middle classification is second-degree sunburn which affects not only the epidermis but also the layers of skin tissue below the epidermis, referred to as the dermis. This is where the sweat and oil glands, capillaries, hair follicles, and nerve endings are all housed and can get damaged by a second-degree sunburn. This sunburn takes a few weeks to fully heal as the damage goes deeper under the skin’s surface and takes longer to flake off.
• The final and most severe classification of sunburn is third-degree sunburn which causes the most damage below the skin. The damage from a third-degree sunburn impacts the deeper tissues below the skin, and healing can take several months to several years. Though rare, people can potentially lose the body part affected by a third-degree sunburn.
Sunburns have a delayed response time as they typically appear within a few hours of exposure to the sun. Even still, it can take a day or so for the full sunburn to be seen and felt, including any damage it has caused. At home treatment for mild to moderate sunburns can be achieved with the use of over-the-counter soothing gels, creams, and lotions available for purchase at most drug stores, specifically formulated to provide relief for sunburns.
However, sunburns that penetrate deep below the skin will require medical attention and preventive care. It takes up to a week or so for mildly sunburnt skin to heal as the burnt skin will dry out and flake away to reveal fresh, healthy, non-sunburned skin underneath. The new skin will appear tanned or can appear slightly sunburnt compared to your natural skin tone but even this will fade over time as the outer layers of skin naturally renew and flake away. Medical attention and walk-in clinics are beneficial for severe sunburns to minimize the risk of infection and ensure the skin is in fact healing.
Medical attention needs to be sought out for sunburns under the classification of third-degree sunburns, as well as severe second-degree sunburns. The doctor will examine your sunburn to see if there are any signs of infection or potential areas that could be at risk of infection. They can provide cost-effective treatment options to help manage the pain, reduce swelling and minimize the damage to the deeper tissue layers.
Early diagnosis of these conditions can help reduce the chance of severe complications and damage to the internal organs by getting treatment right away. Therefore, primary care can offer you just the right medical attention!
Urgent medical attention is needed if:
• Your sunburn covers a large area of your body, or the skin is blistering in any way.
• You have blisters appearing on the hands, face, or genitals.
• There is severe swelling.
• You have signs of an infection such as pain, pus, or red streaks associated with an open blister.
• You are experiencing a fever over 103 degrees.
• You are feeling confused, dehydrated, or have experienced any fainting.
These are symptoms of heatstroke that can be very dangerous to your health if not treated as early as possible. If you have serious symptoms of sunburn, then do not wait to get medical attention from our primary care doctors. Los Banos Primary Care encourages you to contact us as we care about your health and well-being. Call us or book an appointment, or simply walk-in to 1120 West I Street, Suite#B, Los Banos, CA 93635. We serve patients from Los Banos CA, Volta CA, Santa Nella CA, Trent CA, and surrounding areas.