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When should I call the doctor about my child’s sunburn?

Call for help immediately if your child has a sunburn and also has:
  • Signs of shock, including faintness, dizziness, rapid pulse, rapid breathing, increased thirst, and, pale, clammy or cool skin
  • Nausea, fever, chills or rash
  • Eye pain or sensitivity to light

Call your child’s doctor:

  • For any child under 1 year of age with a sunburn
  • For temperature above 100.4°F
  • For signs of dehydration (drying out):
  • No urine in six to eight hours in an infant younger than 1 year old
  • No urine in more than eight hours in a child older than 1 year old
  • No tears when crying
  • Sunken eyes
  • Dry lips and mouth
  • For large or multiple areas of blistering
  • For signs of infection:

         -Increase in swelling, redness and pain (NOTE: Sunburn redness will
           increase for the first 24 hours; this is normal. Increasing redness,
           especially around an area of blistering, after 24 hours is not    
           normal.)
  • Drainage
  • Bad smell from damaged skin
  • Fever

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.