Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"My eyelids are sunburned. What can I put on them?"
I spent some time in the sun this weekend without thinking to wear sunglasses or apply sunscreen to my eyelids, and now my eyelids are red and sore to the touch. Is there anything soothing I can put on them that won't cause further irritation to the area, or result in any kind of damage or infection for my eye? I am hesitant to try and speed up the healing with aloe vera gel or any kind of lotion. I'm also wondering how long it takes eyelid sunburns to heal in relation to sunburns on my arms or in other areas.
This sounds very uncomfortable! The skin on the eyelids is thinner and more delicate than the skin on the arms or neck, and this might explain why it burnt so quickly in your case. The first thing that needs to be done is to get a sense of how serious the sunburn is. The best way to know, in your case, is probably to go and see your regular primary care doctor. Many mild sunburns do not need much in the way of treatment, other than the application of a mild skin moisturizer. On the other hand, more severe sunburns, especially those with blistering, are at high risk of scarring or infection and should be managed with the help of a doctor. Your doctor will be able to help you figure out quickly whether this is burn requires any special treatment. They'll also be able to give you advice on how to relieve the symptoms of a minor burn. As I mentioned above, mild skin moisturizers may have a cooling effect that relieves some of the discomfort. At the same time, anti-inflammatory medications like ibuprofen or naproxen can help with the pain and redness quite a bit, as long as your doctor says that they are ok for you to take.
Need more info?See a doctor today
Zocdoc Answers is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.