students and families are heading to the beach during spring
break to enjoy sun-soaked time away. The first seasonal
exposure to the sun can be exciting. However, it also comes
Clinic dermatologist Dr. Dawn Marie Davis says there are both
immediate and long-term effects to sun exposure that include
skin damage, skin cancer and premature aging.
can get a fever from excessive sun exposure," Davis says.
"Stay cool, drink plenty of water, wear sunscreen and
protective clothing and seek shade." She adds,
"Excess sun exposure triggers the immune system —
similar to contracting an infection. This is why people feel
feverish and chilled when sunburned."
those who want a tan, Davis recommends sunless tanners.
is safe, inexpensive, and lasts seven to 10 days," she
says. "Any tan from the sun is unhealthy. The tan is a
sign of skin damage. It causes you to be at risk for skin
cancer. It also causes premature aging of the skin."
sunscreen and photo protective clothing — fabric that offers
UV protection, Davis says. "This will help decrease the
likelihood of sunburn and development of polymorphous light
doesn’t have to be sunny outside to get a sunburn:
"Ultraviolet light passes through glass, and it reflects
off of snow, water, and concrete. The UV light also passes
through clouds. It is possible to get sunburned on cloudy
Pinkness or redness
that feels warm or hot to the touch
Pain, tenderness or itching
Small fluid-filled blisters that may break
Headache, fever, chills and fatigue if the sunburn is severe
sunburn relief, try using over-the-counter pain relievers and
medications that control itching. They can reduce pain,
swelling and discomfort; however, they will not heal the skin
or prevent damage. See your health care provider if you
develop large blisters, high fever, headache, severe pain,
dehydration, confusion, nausea or chills, or if the sunburn
doesn’t respond to at-home treatments.