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How to Treat a Reaction to Sunscreen

author image Jennifer Purdie
Jennifer Purdie is a freelance writer who has been published in national and regional publications for more than 10 years. She is a certified personal trainer who speaks and writes on fitness, health, travel and lifestyle issues. Purdie received her bachelor's degree in English from the University of Washington, her master's degree from the University of Phoenix and a publishing certification from Arizona State University.
How to Treat a Reaction to Sunscreen
How to Treat a Reaction to Sunscreen

Sunscreen is necessary to avoid the sun's harmful rays, but if you are sensitive to creams and lotions, wearing it may be difficult. If you experience redness, swelling and/or blisters just minutes or even days after applying it, you may be experiencing contact dermatitis (the term meaning a skin reaction to a substance). If the reaction is severe, call a doctor immediately. But there are a few things you can do for instant treatment.

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Step 1

Remove any traces of the sunscreen. Wash your body with a mild cleanser and water. Use a washcloth to gently wash the sunscreen off your skin. Do not harshly rub, as this will only cause further irritation.

Step 2

Lightly and gently apply a hydrocortisone cream, which is available at your local drugstore. This will help calm the skin down and take away some of the redness.

Step 3

Call a dermatologist for further testing. Be sure to bring in the product with you. He can check to see which substances you are allergic to through various allergy testing materials. It may be that you are allergic to the fragrances or dyes found within that particular sunscreen.

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