How to Sleep with Sunburn

by Sehrish Vulvox ABC

Sunburn is a common condition that can occur when your skin is exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays for an extended period. It can be painful and uncomfortable, making it difficult to sleep at night. In this article, we will discuss some practical tips on how to sleep with sunburn and how to relieve the discomfort that comes with it.

Understanding Sunburn

Before we dive into the tips on how to sleep with sunburn, let’s first understand what sunburn is and its symptoms.

What is Sunburn?

Sunburn is a skin condition that occurs when the skin is exposed to the sun’s UV rays. It causes the skin to become red, swollen, and painful.

Symptoms of Sunburn

The symptoms of sunburn include:

•           Red, painful skin

•           Swelling

•           Blisters

•           Itching

•           Peeling skin

Tips on How to Sleep with Sunburn

Sleeping with sunburn can be challenging, but here are some tips that can help you get a good night’s sleep:

  • Take a Cool Shower

Taking a cool shower before bedtime can help soothe your sunburned skin and make it easier to fall asleep. Make sure the water is not too hot as it can aggravate your sunburn.

  • Apply Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is known for its soothing properties and is often used to treat sunburn. Apply a generous amount of aloe vera gel on your sunburned skin before bedtime to relieve the pain and discomfort.

  • Wear Loose Clothing

Wearing loose clothing can prevent further irritation to your sunburned skin. Tight clothing can rub against your skin, making it more painful and uncomfortable to sleep.

  •  Use Soft Bedding

Using soft bedding can help reduce the friction on your sunburned skin. Use soft sheets and pillows that won’t rub against your skin, making it easier to sleep comfortably.

  • Sleep in a Cool Room

Sleeping in a cool room can help ease the pain and discomfort that comes with sunburn. Use a fan or air conditioning to keep the room cool and comfortable.

  • Elevate Your Feet

If you have sunburn on your legs, elevating your feet can help reduce the swelling and pain. Use a pillow or cushion to elevate your feet while you sleep.

  • Take Painkillers

If your sunburn is causing severe pain and discomfort, you can take over-the-counter painkillers like ibuprofen or acetaminophen to ease the pain. Make sure to consult your doctor before taking any medication.

How to Relieve Sunburn Pain and Discomfort

Apart from the tips on how to sleep with sunburn, here are some other ways to relieve the pain and discomfort that comes with sunburn:

  • Apply a Cold Compress

Applying a cold compress on your sunburned skin can help reduce the pain and swelling. Use a towel soaked in cold water or a cold pack on your sunburned skin for 15-20 minutes.

  • Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water can help keep your skin hydrated and prevent further damage. Sunburn can cause dehydration, so it’s essential to drink plenty of fluids.

  • Avoid the Sun

Avoiding the sun can prevent further damage to your sunburned skin. Wear protective clothing, use sunscreen, and stay in the shade when possible.

  • Moisturize Your Skin

Moisturizing your skin can help prevent dryness and peeling. Use a fragrance-free moisturizer on your sunburned skin to keep it hydrated

Common Misconceptions About Sunburn

Sunburn is a common issue that many people experience, but there are also several misconceptions surrounding sunburn that can lead to confusion or even harm. Here are some common misconceptions about sunburn:

  • Sunburn only happens on sunny days: This is a common misconception as sunburn can occur on cloudy or overcast days as well. UV rays can penetrate through clouds and cause skin damage.
  • Sunburn only affects fair-skinned people: While people with fair skin are more prone to sunburn, anyone can get sunburned regardless of their skin color.
  • Sunscreen is only needed on the beach: Sunscreen should be used daily, even on cloudy or cool days, as UV rays can still cause skin damage. Sunscreen should be applied 30 minutes before going outside and reapplied every two hours or after swimming or sweating.
  • A base tan prevents sunburn: A tan does provide some natural protection, but it’s not enough to prevent sunburn. In fact, any change in skin color due to sun exposure is a sign of skin damage.
  • Sunburn is only skin deep: Sunburn can actually penetrate deeper into the skin and cause damage to cells and DNA, potentially leading to skin cancer later in life.


In conclusion, sunburn can be a painful and uncomfortable experience, but there are several ways to prevent it and minimize its duration. Protecting your skin from the sun’s harmful rays is crucial to avoiding sunburn and its potential complications. This includes using sunscreen, wearing protective clothing, seeking shade, and avoiding peak sun hours.

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