Even the most devout sunscreen user can miss a spot or forget to reapply after having too much “fun in the sun.” If the sun has scorched your skin, homeopathy offers several remedies that can ease pain and prevent complications such as blisters and infection.
Arnica: Because there is often an element of shock present with sunburn over a large area, many homeopaths suggest taking one dose of this remedy before giving one of the following.
Cantharis: Painful burning, possibly with itching, raw sensation. The burn feels better from cold applications and the person cannot remove the cold pack for even an instant. If taken immediately, it can prevent blistering.
Causticum: Burns that blister and ooze (like “chemical” burns). This remedy can be used for old burns that do not get well, and for ill effects from burns.
Urtica urens: Intense burning or stinging pain, often with violent itching. The burn feels worse from cold water, heat, exercise, and after sleeping.
Immediately after getting burned, apply a cool compress, which is preferable to ice packs that can damage skin and nerve endings. You can soak the compress in the diluted remedy for added benefit. Refresh compresses frequently, as soon as they “warm up” against the sunburned skin. Dilute one part tincture in ten parts sterile water. A spray bottle is another helpful way to apply diluted remedies.
Aloe vera gel: A tried and true burn reliever; it should be applied to unbroken skin.
Hypericum: Relieves pain on sunburn and unbroken blisters.
Calendula: Helps prevent infection and blisters.
Take a dose by mouth by dilution every 2-4 hours or as needed. Sunburn can lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke, so seek medical attention when in doubt.
Homeopathy can be extremely effective in stabilizing an individual and helping them to heal from overheating. Being exposed to too much hot weather can result in a mild form of shock and make a person overcome with exhaustion.
Below are ten common remedies to consider**. Before selecting, make sure that the patient lies down in a cool, dark space and apply a cool wet cloth to the head while giving sips of water (add a bit of salt to the water if it's available):
Glonoinum: Agonizing congestive headache with waves of throbbing. Face is hot and red. Extremities are cold. Irritability and confusion might be present.
Veratrum alb: Individual might have fainted or collapsed. Face is pale with profuse and clammy sweat, extreme coldness especially to hands and feet. Pulse is rapid and weak. They are anxious, afraid and may rant and rave wildly.
Belladonna: Face is bright red, glassy-eyed, pupils are dilated. Pulse is strong and fast. No thirst but has a dry mouth.
Cuprum met: All symptoms of Veratrum alb may be present, but the dominant symptom is cramping. Individual nay have jerking motions of the muscles.
Aconite: Faint and dizzy with headache after prolonged, direct exposure to the sun. Individual may say that they feel like they are dying, be anxious and restless.
Bryonia: The individual feels “done in”, wants to lie down and to be left alone. Has a terrible headache made worse by the slightest motion. The individual is extremely thirsty for large amounts of cold water.
Camphor: The individual responds to heat by feeling intense chilliness and will shiver. They feel faint and dizzy. Muscle cramps in the arms, legs, or abdomen might be present.
Carbo Veg: Collapse from excess heat with clamminess of the skin and stomach complaints. They have a sense of heaviness in the head, with a throbbing headache in the middle of the forehead and might complain of pain in the eyes. The individual wants to be fanned and needs to feel moving air.
Gelsemium: The individual is overwhelmed by the exhaustion and puzzled by what is happening. They might experience changes in vision and sore muscles. They are drowsy with a headache in back of head, aren’t thirsty.
Lachesis: For headaches from sun exposure; especially if they are worse on the left side. Individual feels worse after waking from sleep (possibly fell asleep in the sun), feels faint and dizzy.
**NOTE: the individual may be suffering from heat stroke. Heat stroke is a life threatening emergency and there are remedies to be given, while heading to the nearest hospital.