Sun Poisoning Rash- Causes, Symptoms, Pictures, Treatment

Sun poisoning rash is a kind of skin rash that appears on the skin due to constant or prolonged direct exposure to rays of sun. Such rashes may affect anyone who is exposed to sunlight for a long time. However, it is said that people with fair skin are more susceptible to such sun rashes. This is because fair skin does not have sufficient pigmentation to protect itself from harmful UV rays emitted from the sun. The rashes and skin poisoning may also occur due to combination of exposure to sun and harmful chemicals used on your skin through cosmetics, medications etc.

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Sun Poisoning Rash Pictures

Look at these sun poisoning rash photos to get an idea of how they really look

What happens when the rash starts

When your skin becomes influenced due to sun light or combination of chemicals and UV rays, then initially your skin may turn red or feel itchy. In case of some people the reaction is so serious that even insignificant exposure to such light may cause damages to skin. People who have history of skin related issues or prior skin damages may be cautious about skin poisoning rash as they are at high risk of developing the issue. However, there are other skin types that are also prone to developing such poisoning condition.

Sun poisoning rash may also have some other symptoms such as:

There are certain symptoms that may be experienced along with sun poisoning rashes. Keeping track of these symptoms may help you to understand the severity of the issue and manage the condition appropriately.

Skin rashes:

Rashes are amongst the initial and most determinable symptoms of sun rashes or sun burns. These are allergic rashes that are reaction against the sun rays. It may seem like small red patches appearing on the skin and may be itchy or painful with little elevation. It may take few minutes to few hours for these rashes to appear on the exposed area. This condition is usually benign and temporary; however, in severe cases any of the following symptoms may accompany.

Head pain:

Skin poisoning rash may sometimes be accompanied by headache. The affected person may also experience acute pain in the head, particularly near the temple, which may make it difficult for the person to concentrate or carry on regular activities.


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The headache may be accompanied by queasiness. It is according to the theory that sometimes queasiness arises along with acute pain experienced in the head.

• Dizziness:

In some cases sun poisoning rash may also bring about a reeling sensation which is known as dizziness.

• Fever:

An individual with rashes due to exposure to sun may also develop high body temperature. Such fevers are usually accompanied by chills.

Causes of sun poisoning rash:

There is not only one factor that causes sun poisoning rash but, sometimes a combination of more factors mat lead to sunburn or rashes due to sun poisoning. Here are some of such factors that may influence your skin.

Exposure to UV rays:

It is already mentioned that prolonged exposure to sunrays may lead to such rashes. In fact, sun rays carries UV rays that are harmful for the skin and leads to sun poisoning related to skin.

Lack of pigmentation:

Lack of pigmentation is another factor that may increase the risk of skin poisoning rashes due to exposure to sun. Due to low pigmentation the skin is unable to protect itself from harmful rays emitted by the sun. This is perhaps the reason why people with fair complexion are at higher risk of developing such skin rashes.


There are some medications that augment the skin vulnerability to UV rays emitted by the sun. There are components such as Salicylanilide that is usually found in industrial detersive as well as Hexachlorophene which is often found in antibacterial soaps may sometimes make skin vulnerable to sun poisoning. Tetracycline antibiotics are other substance that may have the same effects. Apart from these components, tranquilizers, hypertension medicines as well as contraceptive pills may also make your skin more sensitive to such harmful sunrays. These medication may sometimes do not even need any exposure to sunrays to cause rashes or sunburn on the skin. Another such potentially harmful medication to the skin is Thiazide diuretics. Hence, before you onset any of these medicines it is essential to seek medical attention from a certified doctor.

Diagnosing sun positioning rash:

Diagnosing sun poisoning rash generally does not need any special diagnosing technique, unless the conditions is severe or has progressed. It is usually diagnosed by a health care expert just by looking at the affected skin region on the body. Most of the times your doctor may not even need any special device to look at the afflicted skin portion.

• Allergy:

There are possibilities that any natural product may also lead to such issues if you are allergic to any of the substances used in the product. The difficulties such as rashes or roseola in the skin can be treated easily if timely treatment is adopted.

Treatment for sun poisoning rash:

Treating sun poisoning rash may not be as difficult as it may seem. For example the core of the treatment is to reduce the body temperature that elevates the rashes on the skin. This can be achieved by bringing about some lifestyle changes and adopted natural methods for lowering body temperature. Here are some tips:

• Taking shower with cool water frequently during the day will help in reducing the body temperature.

• Avert the use of harmful soaps or detersive for taking bath; treat the affected skin region gently

• Rub dry the affected region with clean soft towel, do not scratch the affected itchy region; otherwise the condition may grow worse

• Use a cotton swab and dip in milk or cold water, press it gently against the affected skin region and remove. Continues this for approximately 15 to 20 minutes; this will help in reducing the body temperature.

These are few techniques to provide relief from the condition. However, it is always better to consult a doctor and follow his instructions. Use SPF based sunscreen on your skin region which is exposed to sunlight often; this would help in preventing sun poisoning rash from developing on your body.

Also read about heat stroke and heat exhaustion

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