Skin problems during summer vacation are common and can cause discomfort as well as represent a significant health risk. Dr. Svetlana Đurišić advises how to effectively overcome them and what is the first aid for the most common of them.
Any tanning is considered as skin damage caused by sun. It is necessary to use lotions with SPF (50), wear long-sleeved clothes and avoid sun exposure between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
Keep in mind that ultraviolet radiation has more effect on skin aging than all the others factors we are exposed to combined. It is also the biggest risk factor for skin cancer, and just one sunburn in childhood doubles the risk of developing melanoma later in life. The negative effects of solar radiation accumulate over time.
More than 20 minutes of sun exposure, without adequate protection, will cause the skin to start burning. It can pass unnoticeable and lead to blisters later in the evening.
Cool your skin with a shower or a wet towel. Pat the skin dry with a towel and apply moisturizing repairing agents like panthenol, aloe vera, vitamin C, vitamin E and other antioxidants. If blisters have formed, do not remove their surface, use antiseptic agents such as Cicaplast.
Make sure to drink enough fluids to prevent dehydration and to allow the skin to recover faster.
If necessary, take paracetamol or ibuprofen for pain relief.
For more sunbathing tips click on the link.
After being stung by a wasp or a bee, you should remove the stinger from your skin as soon as possible. It is preferable to use gauze or the edge of an object. Plucking with tweezers or squeezing could cause more venom to be released. Wash with soap and water and apply a little bit of vinegar or baking soda. If the sting site is swollen, apply a corticosteroid cream. If there is an allergic reaction to the sting, swelling will appear outside the sting site. In that case, it is necessary to see a doctor.
In case of a tick bite, the tick needs to be removed from the skin. If you can, put the tick in a bottle and take it to a lab to check if it is infected. If you can’t do that, after 6 weeks following the bite, perform a Borrelia Burgdorferi antibody test.
What if you got stung by a jellyfish
Jellyfish are usually found in warm seas, but due to climate changes, they are increasingly common in our regions, on the Adriatic and the Mediterranean coast.
If a jellyfish stings you, you will feel burning, itching sensation and even pain with redness and sometimes blisters. Most jellyfish sting symptoms resolve after a few days without complications, leaving a mild pigmentation that will also disappear.
If you notice that you have been stung by a jellyfish, you should rinse the area with sea water and gently remove the tentacles with tweezers if they remained on the skin and put a cold compress on the burns.
You can also apply an antihistamine cream or rinse the area with diluted alcohol vinegar (50:50).
If you experience allergic reactions or headache, nausea and light-headedness, contact your doctor immediately.
What if you step on a sea urchin
Sea urchins withy their needles are also a common problem at sea. If you happen to step on it and end up with needles in your foot, it would be a good idea to visit a dermatologist. A doctor will expertly and quickly remove the needles and clean the wounds to avoid possible infection.
Even though the needles will come out spontaneously after a while, it would be better to remove them as soon as possible to avoid pain and the risk of infection.
When removing them, it is important to use sterile needles and tweezers as well as disinfectants. A dermatologist can also prescribe an antibiotic ointment.