What is Sun Poisoning and how can you treat it

Sun poisoning occurs due to prolonged exposure to the sun’s UV rays. The level of sun poisoning may vary specifically in your case, and accordingly, it may manifest differently. A mild sunburn usually does not require medical attention, whereas sun poisoning usually does.

Causes Of Sun Poisoning

There might be several potential causes for sun poisoning-

  • In some circumstances, it can occur due to a pre-existing condition. For instance, lupus and eczema can increase light sensitivity and the risk of sun poisoning.
  • Certain medications and contact with specific chemicals can make the skin more sensitive to sunlight.
  • Additionally, a nutritional shortage or genetic predisposition can raise the risk of experiencing sun poisoning.
  • People with fair complexion, light-colored hair, and eyes that are blue or green are at a higher risk of acquiring sun poisoning. 
  • Having a family history of skin cancer may be the cause.
  • Antibiotics, oral contraceptives, Alpha hydroxy acids (found in chemical peels), and some herbal supplements, like St. John’s wort, may further raise your risk.
  • Another contributing factor is applying citrus oils to the skin before exposure to the sun.
  • Living conditions such as the following might also be a cause-
  • Living close to the equator
  • Living at a high altitude (such as in hilly areas)
  • Going to the beach frequently (because sunlight reflects more strongly off sand and water)
  • Regularly skiing or snowboarding in the winter. 
  • Long periods spent in the sun also put people in greater danger. When a job necessitates working outside, this may constitute an occupational hazard. Employers should be aware of these occupational hazards.

How to Identify a Case of Sun Poisoning: Symptoms

sun poisoning

You may initially feel the signs of a typical sunburn during sun poisoning. 6 to 12 hours of continuous UV radiation exposure can cause sunburn symptoms. 

How to distinguish between sun poisoning, sunburn, and sun rash symptoms-

  • Sun exposure, sun poisoning, or exposure to outdoor plants like parsnip can cause a sun rash (sun allergy). An extensive red rash is how sun allergy symptoms manifest themselves. It itches a lot, too. The rash may grow little lumps that resemble hives.
  • You can endure redness, soreness, and swelling if you have a light sunburn. Although applying aloe vera gel might help calm your skin, a sunburn eventually heals itself.


  • Pimples or blisters may occur in the affected area. 
  • The skin may become irritated.
  • The skin’s affected surface may hurt and resemble eczema lesions.
  • Additionally, the skin may become red or inflamed.
  • The afflicted skin may occasionally turn darker. Hyperpigmentation is the term for this.
  • Fever with occasional chills along with headaches is one predictable symptom.
  • Dehydration, confusion, and fainting can also include in the list.
  • They might also suffer from severe nausea, vomiting, and dizziness. 

Types Of Sun Poisoning

  • The effects of sun poisoning can be either acute or chronic. When symptoms of sun poisoning are temporary, mild, and treatable, it is said to be acute sun poisoning. 
  • Severe, enduring symptoms are a hallmark of chronic sun poisoning. Medical advice is crucial since some types of persistent sun poisoning can be challenging to avoid and treat.

Sun Poisoning Treatment- 

Sun Poisoning


Some severe signs and symptoms of sun poisoning include dehydration and electrolyte loss. It may cause severe headaches, exhaustion, nausea, lightheadedness, and other symptoms. Drinking water to replace lost fluids will speed up your treatment. You can also consume sports drinks with electrolytes to swiftly alleviate sun poisoning symptoms.

Aloe Vera GEL – 

Aloe vera gel’s application to the skin is a good treatment. It has anti-inflammatory characteristics, which can help cool and soothe irritated and burned skin. You have two options. Either purchase aloe vera gel or scrape fresh aloe vera from the plant’s center. Apply this gel to the affected areas. It soothes the rash, hives, and burns from sun poisoning. Additionally, aloe aids in wound healing, which can treat any blisters or burns brought on by sun poisoning.


Epsom salts contain anti-inflammatories. It treats sun-poisoning-related hives, eczema, and burns. To get relief, dissolve a cup of Epsom salt in a bath and soak it in the water. By soaking oatmeal in bath water, you can reduce itching and irritations. It also gives your rash or burned skin another anti-inflammatory.


You can help your body recover from sun poisoning by taking vitamins. You can speed up the healing process of your skin by consuming vitamin E-rich meals or supplements. To increase vitamin E consumption, try eating more greens, avocados, almonds, and seeds. Vitamin E topicals can be applied directly to a bad sunburn to speed healing. Vitamin C’s antioxidant qualities help the skin recover from oxidation. Consider consuming more citrus or supplementing your diet.


It’s time to see a doctor if your symptoms are severe or persistent. In the case of a chronic disorder, specialist treatment or care is a must. A doctor will ideally advise you to make dietary modifications. They may also use appropriate dressings for the blisters. They can use light therapy (phototherapy) or treat it with drug therapy.

To avoid sun poisoning, one must stay away from prolonged exposure to sunlight. Tanning beds might complicate the treatment. Applying sun protection creams for the patient is advised. Asking your doctor about the possible effects of your current drugs is also suggested. Take care of your skin. Your skin defines your appearance and look, which forms a part of your personality. And it is also a part of your well-being. 



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