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So You’ve Got a Sunburn…Here’s What To Do

So You’ve Got a Sunburn…Here’s What To Do

Gaining a golden-brown glow by putting in no more effort than simply spending time in the warm, summer sun sounds like a dream. Who wouldn’t want to bathe in the rays of the sun while relaxing outside? Even with the knowledge of just how harsh the sun can be on humans’ skin, people still choose to tan in the sun on a fairly regular basis. Although this activity is enjoyed by many, it has some drawbacks that can turn this sunny, summer dream into a nightmare.

This story begins with you lying down poolside for some fun with your friends. Everyone is in and out of the water without giving much thought to whether or not you applied your sunscreen. You have indeed skipped that step and opted to tan without any protection from the sun.

Now it’s time to pack up and you’re on your way inside the house when it happens – your skin begins to burn. You reach for the affected area and immediately regret that move. You’ve got sunburn and your skin has become sensitive to touch. You neglected to cover all the exposed areas of your body and equipped with this information, the sun chose to play a cruel joke on you. Your skin is inflamed and you’re in pain, but aren’t sure what to do. Try not to panic: there are some ways to bring you relief.

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1. Start by taking aspirin or ibuprofen

If taken within 24 hours of the sunburn, these medicines will help relieve the inflammation that you’ll suffer as a result of the burn.

2. Apply lots of lotion to your skin

The sun did a number on you, including removing moisture from your skin. Restore this moisture to your skin by slathering on lotion that contains calming ingredients such as aloe vera. It will not only moisturize your skin, but soothe it as well.

3. Cold water helps

Soak a washcloth in cold water and use it on your skin to soothe the burn.

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4. Drink plenty of water

Following sunburn, many people are dehydrated. Be sure to replace the fluids in your body by drinking lots of water.

5. Apply sunscreen

Preventing sunburn is as simple as coating your body with sunscreen that has a high SPF count and avoiding exposure to the sun when its rays are at their strongest, between 10am and 4pm Sunscreen can help even after you’ve been affected by sunburn, though. You should use sunscreen to continually repair your skin.

6. Take a calming bath

Treat yourself to a soothing bath that contains baking soda or oatmeal. This will comfort you as you work to repair the damage that the sun has left behind.

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7. Cornstarch is a good option

Although your skin is tender, you cannot avoid coming into contact with some surfaces such as clothing and underwear. Try using cornstarch on those areas in order to make it easier to feel fabrics against your skin.

8. Look for Lidocaine

Lidocaine is an active ingredient found in many topical pain relievers. When searching for a skin cream or spray to temporarily relieve you of pain, make sure it is one that contains Lidocaine.

It’s understandable that you want an enviable skin tone, one that you can obtain free of cost. After spending all that time in the sun, however, you’ll ultimately be paying a bigger price than you ever would have by purchasing a bottle of self-tanner. Exposing yourself to the sun’s inviting yet harmful rays for prolonged periods of time without proper protection places you in painful predicaments such as dealing with wicked sunburn, and can eventually lead to skin cancer.

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There’s nothing wrong with enjoying time outdoors as long as you are sure to practice safe habits while in the sun. This includes protecting your skin from the sun’s negative effects. You may have suffered sunburn this time, but you’ll survive it and can go on to use this story as a lesson about preserving the health of your skin.

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Last Updated on July 8, 2020

18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

18 Benefits of Journaling That Will Change Your Life

The act of writing in a journal often seems daunting or unnecessary to many people. Even authors who work on novels might shun the idea of daily diaries. What purpose does jotting down words on a regular basis do if not contributing to the next novel, play or song? I know from experience many benefits of journaling that I wish to share.

1. Understand Yourself Better

Though many people and even writers avoid keeping journals, I vow to do it more often. Not only do I desire to take up daily journaling but also I plan to do it with pen to paper.

Some of the benefits I’ve found from my more active days include finding myself in the sense of understanding what matters to me and what I want out of life. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to find a spouse who is my best friend and advocate in raising children. I attribute this and much more to what I learned about myself in keeping journals for years.

2. Keep Track of Small Changes

I’ll admit that I never got very far with my guitar lessons, but in writing in a journal, I have seen the ability to track small changes like those that come when you practice anything.

Those learning a musical instrument often fail to see the small improvements that come with regular practice. Writing won’t help you switch chords any faster, but it will help you to develop a better sense for language and grammar just by doing it.

3. Become Aware of What Matters

As you continue to write in a journal, following a stream-of-consciousness feel, you can look back on the topics that you chose to write about. Those issues and emotions that poured out of you will provide insight on to what matters most to you.

You may not even realize that you’re job is depressing you or that you want to spend more time with your kids until you look over your thoughts that you weren’t really thinking about.

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4. Boost Creativity

The idea that the brain and its neural activity across hemispheres encourages learning also shows up in increased creativity. Just like with learning an instrument, your increased activity will inspire your thoughts to connect and reconnect in different ways.

When I wrote in a journal, I often wrote poetry as well as just my thoughts as they came out. I started to hear poems more in my mind; so much so that I took to scrawling lines on napkins and finding metaphors in mundane activities.

You really are what you do, so writing helps grow more than being a writer. Writing boosts the way you communicate and structure language, which really is a creative process.

5. Represents Your Emotions in a Safe Environment

A journal is as private as it gets. You can lock it in a safe or tuck it under a pillow and no one will accidentally share it on social media or have an opportunity to “leave a comment.”

Write about your sorrow as much as your happiness and frustration and know that you don’t have to keep your emotions inside your body. You can put them on paper.

6. Process Life Experiences

When you take the time to look back over what you’ve written, be it a week or a year later, you will have the distance you need to more objectively interpret your raw feelings.

Everything from losing a job to losing a loved one can emerge in a new light for a fresh perspective. Figuring out how the benefits of journaling affect your perspective on life will create connection and increase creativity.

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7. Stress Relief

In combining the exercise inherent in fine motor coordination that comes from the act of writing with the emotional release of self expression, those who maintain a journal relieve stress.

Try it out. Go home and write about your day. Write about the traffic. Write about the coffee order the barista got wrong but you didn’t have time to change. See how you can physically purge some of that pent-up stress by putting it on paper.

8. Provide Direction

Though journaling is often conducted as an activity without much direction, it often provides direction.

One of the biggest benefits of journaling is that your chaotic thoughts merge to show a direction in which to head. Asking the right questions is the only way to achieve the best solutions, so look to your journal to find your way toward your next goal.

9. Solve Problems

Just as in practicing math problems, we all get better at finding hidden solutions through the act of processing.

Think of your next goal as X and solve your life problems by reading your journals as word problems. The benefit of journaling here is that you write, explore and process to recognize and then solve problems.

When life is too in-your-face, you have to step back to see reality. Living in the moment allows us to write in the moment and use that expression to solve problems.

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10. Find Relief From Fighting

Solving your problems only comes after time to process, recognize and strategize. Just as in the benefit of journaling where relief comes from the act of writing, relief from fighting comes when you decide to “sit this one out” and communicate one-way.

Fighting is only productive when the fighters care to communicate and find common ground. When the emotions are as high as the stress levels, writing will function as the best time out.

11. Find Meaning in Life

Journaling will show you why you are living, whether you are wallowing in things you wish to change or striving to make the changes. Your life will begin to take on new meaning and your own words will reveal the actions that got you where you are so that you can assess and pave a new path for your future.

12. Allow Yourself to Focus

Taking even a small amount of time out of every day will provide you with not only peace of mind but also increased focus. Taking a break to meditate in writing and journaling will sharpen your mental faculties.

13. Sharpen Your Spirituality

When we write, we allow all the energy and experiences to flow through us, which often provides further insight into our own spirituality. Even if your parents didn’t raise you to follow a specific religion, your thoughts will start to show you what you believe about the universe and your place in it.

14. Let the Past Go

I’ve mentioned a few examples where going back over your writing offers advice and direction, but the simply truth is that writing down our feelings can be the best way to let them go. We can choose to literally throw these pages away when they’re filled with negativity and hate.

15. Allow Freedom

Journaling is the perfect way to not only express yourself but to also experience the freedom of being who you are. Your books can stay private or you can publish them. Your freedom stems from your sense of self and your perception of your thoughts.

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16. Enhance Your Career

Again, the private act of pen-to-paper processing provides the benefits of journaling mentioned above, but you can also enhance your career when you take similar ideas and categorize, edit and publish them in an online blog.

Your thoughts will often be personal and express emotions, but another benefit of journaling is uncovering fresh ideas about your work.

17. Literally Explore Your Dreams

All the benefits I’ve mentioned explore ideas, thoughts and emotions, which is also what our dreams and nightmares do. Through writing down your dreams from the previous night, you can enhance your creativity as well as connect some of the metaphorical dots from the rest of your journal.

18. Catalog Your Life for Others

No one wants to think about dying, but we all die. Leaving a journal will act as a way to reconnect with family and friends left behind. The ideas you wish to keep personal while you process the life you’re living will serve to rekindle and inspire those who loved you through the process.

We consider our partners our life witnesses, but writing provides a tangible mark on the world.

Now that you’ve learned all the benefits of journaling, it’s time to start writing a journal:

Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

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