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8 Ways Your Body Changes After Just One Sunburn

In the last decade, the incidence of skin cancer jumped 77 percent – and damaging sunburns are a big part of the problem. Here’s how just one sunburn causes lasting damage.

You won’t see the burn right away

Over time, skin cells pick up more melanin particles (the pigment in skin) as a protective mechanism. To you, this gradual change in pigment—from pink to red to darker red—means you won’t see the full extent of the burn until six to 24 hours after exposure, says Michele Farber, MD, a dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology Group in New York City.

Your skin tries to ease the burn

Blood vessels dilate in an effort to bring healthy oxygenated blood to the area, which will cause that tell-tale redness and warmth, says Dr. Farber. Plus, “any state of inflammation brings fluid to the skin,” she says. At the cellular level, there is swelling in between individual skin cells. This can also happen on the surface of the skin, otherwise known as a blister.

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Source: Reader’s digest – 8 Ways Your Body Changes After Just One Sunburn By, Jessica Migala


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