General Practice 2022

Sunscreen allergy: symptoms and what to do

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Sunscreen allergy: symptoms and what to do
Sunscreen allergy: symptoms and what to do

Sunscreen allergy is an allergic reaction that arises due to some irritating substance present in the sunscreen, leading to the appearance of symptoms such as redness, itching and peeling of the skin, which can happen in adults, children and even even in babies.

As soon as the first symptoms appear, it is important that the person washes the entire area that has applied the sunscreen and applies a soothing moisturizer to relieve the symptoms of the allergy. In addition, the dermatologist or allergist may recommend the use of antihistamines or corticosteroids according to the severity of the allergic reaction.

Symptoms of sunscreen allergy

Although it is not very common, some people are allergic to at least one of the substances that make up sunscreen and it is characterized by the appearance of symptoms in the regions where the sunscreen was applied, the main ones being:

  • Itching;
  • Redness;
  • Peeling and irritation;
  • Presence of white or reddish spots or polka dots.

In more serious and rare cases, allergy to sunscreen can lead to the appearance of more serious symptoms such as difficulty breathing and feeling of something stuck in the throat, and it is important that the person goes immediately to the hospital so that these symptoms are treated.

The diagnosis of sunscreen allergy can be made by observing the symptoms that appear on the skin after application of the product, without the need to perform any specific test or examination.However, the dermatologist may recommend performing an allergy test in order to verify if the person has any type of reaction to the substances present in the sunscreen, thus being able to indicate the most appropriate protector.

Furthermore, before using a sunscreen that you have never used before, it is recommended to apply the sunscreen to a small area and leave it on for a few hours to check for any signs or symptoms of allergy.

What to do when the first symptoms appear

As soon as the first symptoms of allergy are noticed, especially in the baby, it is recommended to call or take the baby to the pediatrician so that the treatment can be started quickly. In the case of children and adults, it is recommended that as soon as the first signs and symptoms of allergy appear, the places where the protector has been applied are washed with plenty of water and soap with neutral pH. After washing, you should apply hypoallergenic products with soothing agents, such as creams or lotions with chamomile, lavender or aloe, for example, to soothe irritation and keep the skin hydrated and cared for.

If after washing and moisturizing the skin, the symptoms do not disappear completely after 2 hours or if they even get worse, it is recommended that you consult the dermatologist as soon as possible so that he can proceed with the recommended treatment for your case..

Also, if the symptoms get worse and you get to feel difficulty breathing and a feeling of something stuck in your throat, you should go quickly to the emergency room, as it is a sign that you have a severe allergy to sunscreen..

Sunscreen allergy treatment

The recommended treatment for sunscreen allergy depends on the severity of the symptoms and this can be done with antihistamine drugs such as Loratadine or Allegra, for example, or with corticosteroids such as Betamethasone, in the form of syrup or tablets that serve to relieve and treat allergy symptoms. In addition, to reduce the redness and itching of the skin, the doctor may also recommend applying antihistamine ointments such as Polaramine cream, which help to reduce the redness and itching of the skin.

Sunscreen allergy is a problem that has no cure, but there are some tips and alternatives that can help protect the skin of those who have had an allergy, such as:

  1. Try other brands of sunscreen and try using hypoallergenic sunscreen;
  2. Do not get sun in the hottest hours, between 10 am and 4 pm.
  3. Go to shady places and spend as much time out of the sun as possible;
  4. Wear t-shirts that protect against the sun's rays and wear a cap or wide-brimmed hat;
  5. Eat more foods rich in beta-carotene, as they protect the skin from the sun's rays and prolong the tan.

Another option is to choose to use sunscreen that can be ingested, which corresponds to a vitamin juice that protects the skin from damage caused by the sun's rays.

All these cares are essential, as they help protect the skin from the harmful effects caused by the sun, preventing the appearance of skin blemishes or cancer.

How to avoid sunscreen allergy

To avoid allergy to sunscreen, it is important to do a small test before applying sunscreen all over your body, so it is recommended that you put a little protector behind your ears and leave it on for 12 hours without washing. After this time, if there is no reaction, the protector can be used without any problem.

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