Spending too much time in the sun without protection such as sunscreen often leads to sunburn, and in some cases, painful blisters. Minor sunburn blisters can often be treated at home with over-the-counter medications and remedies, such as sunburn spray. In more severe cases, sunburn blisters may need to be treated by a physician. It is important to note that blisters, which are raised fluid-filled sacs that develop as a result of skin damage, are necessary to the body's natural healing process and should never be popped by the patient.
These blisters will often pop and ooze fluid on their own, and this is a natural part of the healing process. The patient should be careful not to scratch the blisters or otherwise pop them, as the blisters appear to help protect the skin from further damage while the body works to heal the injured tissues. If the blisters are ruptured before they are ready, there is an increased risk of complications such as infection.
While the blisters are still intact, the best type of treatment is often a medicated sunburn spray which can be purchased at almost any drug store without a prescription. This type of spray works to ease the pain and discomfort associated with sunburn and also keeps the area sanitized. Once the blisters rupture, an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment can be used to help prevent infection.
It is important to keep the affected areas clean at all times in order to prevent infection. The sunburned area should be washed carefully with a mild soap and gently patted dry with a soft, clean towel. Over-the-counter pain medications such as ibuprofen can be used to help reduce some of the discomfort while waiting for the area to heal.
Some commonly used home remedies for sunburn blisters include vinegar, aloe vera, and baking soda. Vinegar can be sprayed directly on the affected area to cool the skin and ease the pain associated with sunburn. Likewise, aloe vera gel can ease symptoms while helping to heal the skin. Baking soda also can be added to bath water or mixed with water in a spray bottle and sprayed directly on the affected area for symptom relief.
Sunburn blisters can sometimes lead to skin infections, which should be treated by a doctor. Some common signs of infection include increased pain, swelling, and fever. Some patients may experience swollen lymph glands in the neck, armpits, or groin areas. Red streaks will often extend out from the affected area when an infection is present, or pus may ooze from the blisters. Prescription medications, including oral antibiotics, are sometimes needed to treat the infection so it does not move into the bloodstream, causing further health complications.