Preparing for your appointment

By Mayo Clinic Staff

You're likely to first see your family doctor or primary care doctor. Before you go to your appointment, make a list of all medications that you're taking — including vitamins, herbs and over-the-counter drugs — as some medications increase your sensitivity to UV radiation.

For sunburn, some basic questions to ask your doctor include:

  • Do I need prescription medication, or can I use over-the-counter medications to treat the condition?
  • How soon after I begin treatment can I expect improvement?
  • What skin care routines do you recommend while the sunburn heals?
  • What suspicious changes in my skin should I look for?

If your doctor notices any skin abnormalities, such as lesions or suspicious moles, you may be referred to a doctor who specializes in skin diseases (dermatologist) for further evaluation.

What you can do in the meantime

While waiting for your appointment, these home remedies may reduce your pain and discomfort:

  • Take an anti-inflammatory medication, such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, others).
  • Apply cold compresses to the affected skin, or take a cool bath or shower.
  • Apply an aloe vera or after-sun lotion to your skin to decrease pain and swelling.
Apr. 14, 2011