Sunburned scalp: Causes Symptoms Treatment

Seema Rai
Seema Rai

When your skin is exposed to too much ultraviolet (UV) light from the sun, it burns. Any exposed skin, including your scalp, can burn.

While it is critical to avoid sunburning your scalp and hairline, we wanted to get advice from experts on what to do if these areas do get sunburned. Because of the presence of hair follicles, the scalp and hairline are more difficult to treat. It’s understandable why someone would be hesitant to apply the same thick aloe vera gel they use on a body burn to the center of their hair.

Symptoms of sunburned scalp

Sunburned scalp symptoms are similar to those of other parts of the body, and include:

  • redness
  • having a warm or hot sensation on the touch
  • itching small, fluid-filled blisters tenderness or pain

If you have a severe sunburn, you may also experience:

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  • headache
  • fever
  • nausea
  • fatigue

The first signs of a sunburn may appear within a few hours, but it may take 24 hours or longer to determine the full extent.

Treatment for sunburned scalp

It can be treated at home. Follow these simple steps for about a week, or until your sunburn has healed:

  • Shower in cool or at the very least tepid water. Sunburn will be more painful if you use hot water.
  • Examine the packaging of your shampoo and conditioner.
  • Avoid sulfate-containing shampoos until the sunburn has healed, as they can dry out and cause irritation.
  • Avoid conditioners containing dimethicone, which can clog pores, trap heat, and cause further damage.
  • Avoid using excessive hair products. Many of them contain chemicals that can aggravate a sunburn.
  • Natural hair drying and styling Blow dryers and flat irons can dry out and damage your healing scalp.
    Use cold compresses to relieve pain.

Sun protection for the scalp

The best way to protect it from the sun is to wear a hat. That’s usually all you need to do to avoid sunburn. However, if your chosen head covering has a loose weave. It may be allowing UV light through to your scalp. UV light is at its strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
On your scalp, apply a sunblock lotion. It can be difficult to get even coverage if you have hair, and the lotion will coat your hair as well.

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