Sunburn is bad news for your skin. But you can’t really avoid the sun and its rays, especially when you want to enjoy the heat during the cold season. Like many, I recently got overexposed to the ultraviolet rays while soaking up the sun and ended up with redness, discomfort and swelling. I went to my mom for sunburn treatment. She told me to put cold milk on my skin! Well, it worked wonders for me, so let’s find out if cold milk is actually a good home remedy for sunburn for everyone.
Skin damage known as sunburn is a result of excessive exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays of the sun, says Dr Jatin Mittal, a cosmetologist. Your skin cells may suffer damage to their DNA as a result of prolonged exposure to UV rays. This sets off an inflammatory reaction in the body, giving rise to redness, discomfort, and swelling. Apart from these immediate consequences, sunburn can also harm skin over time, accelerating the ageing process and raising the risk of skin cancer.
It’s important to protect your skin from sunburn for a number of reasons.
Sunburn can be painful and uncomfortable, as the affected skin may become red and swollen. Severe sunburns can even lead to blistering and peeling, causing additional discomfort.
Prolonged exposure to UV radiation, leading to sunburns, is a major risk factor for skin cancer, says the expert. This includes both non-melanoma skin cancers (such as basal cell carcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma) and melanoma, a more dangerous form of skin cancer.
Sunburn accelerates the ageing process of the skin, as it can lead to the development of wrinkles, fine lines, and age spots.
The body loses fluids through the damaged skin in case of a sunburn. So, staying well-hydrated is essential for your skin and overall health.
As soon as you become aware of a sunburn, it’s critical to begin treating it to relieve the stinging skin and promote healing.
Some take a shower with cold water, or apply cold water to skin to cure a sunburn. Another common home remedy for sunburn is cold milk, which has a cooling effect. Although there is little scientific proof to support this particular treatment, there are some reasons why it might help.
Sunburn sufferers can get instant relief from the heat of their skin by using cold milk to help cool their skin. The chilly temperature may aid in blood vessel constriction, lowering discomfort and inflammation, says Dr Mittal.
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Milk includes proteins and lipids, both of which may have a moisturising quality. So, applying milk on skin can help to moisturise and relieve the dryness and peeling that are frequently brought on by sunburn.
Lactic acid, which is a mild exfoliator, is found in milk. This could accelerate skin renewal and help to get rid of dead skin cells, which could speed up the healing process.
If you want to try using cold milk for sunburn relief, do the following:
Some people also find that applying cold yoghurt to their sunburned skin helps to soothe it. Like cold milk, yoghurt has specific characteristics and a cooling effect that may provide relief, says Dr Mittal.
Using a cold milk compress for sunburn relief is generally considered safe for most people, and side effects are rare. However, it’s essential to be aware of the potential side effects that may occur.
Some people may be allergic to components in milk. If you are allergic to dairy or you are lactose intolerant, using milk on your skin may cause irritation or an allergic reaction.
If the milk is not handled and stored properly, it could become contaminated with bacteria. Using contaminated milk on sunburned skin may lead to infections, says the expert. Ensure that the milk is fresh and clean before applying it.
If your sunburn is severe or if you experience persistent pain, blistering or other concerning symptoms, talk to your doctor.