Archive for May, 2014

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Sunburn Relief and Skin Cancer

Dr. Susan Jewell discusses the importance of skin protection from the sun and why to avoid needing sunburn relief in the first place.

Monday, May 19, 2014

A Few Places You May Need Sunburn Relief

file0002054422162If we wear sunscreen, most of us know where to apply it: face, shoulders, back, arms and legs. But there are a few places that dermatologists and doctors see more sun damage than others – and this is because we have some places on our body that we don’t readily realize needs sunscreen (or sunburn relief) just as much as others.

Here are a few places you’ll want to be sure to apply sunscreen (or provide sunburn relief to) this summer:

The Scalp!
This is especially true for bald men, and for men and women with thinning or fine hair. Try a non-greasy sunscreen spray to make application easier. Then rub in.

Top of the Ears!
Don’t forget the top ridges of your ears. The skin is incredibly thin and can burn quite easily. If you’re going to pull your hair back or wear a baseball cap, your ears won’t be protected from the sun’s rays, so be sure to cover them with sunscreen.

Your Lips!
We often don’t think of our lips as needing sun care, but the definitely do and can become burned and chapped quite easily. Some chapsticks and lip balms have UV protection built in, so look for those then apply often because you’ll likely remove it every time you eat or swim.

The Edges of your Clothes!
Sometimes we wear plunging necklines, V-necks, or button downs that expose a large amount of our chest, but we forget that those areas need protection as well. So be sure to cover your throat and chest with a quality sunscreen to avoid odd-looking sunburns and the need for sunburn relief.

Back of Neck!
This is especially true for men and women with short hair because their is nothing to cover this area of skin. When you’re getting ready to head outside for a jog, beach day, boat ride, etc. remember to give some attention and protection to the back of your neck as well.

Back of the Knee!
Many of us apply sunscreen to our calves, knees and thighs, but completely forget about the back of our knees. This is really common if we apply sunscreen while sitting down since our legs are bent. If we do any sunbathing or just warming ourselves belly-down on the warm sand after a swim, the back of our knees are exposed to the sun. Getting a burn behind the knee can make walking quite uncomfortable so this isn’t an area we want to forget.

Back of Hands and Tops of Feet!
These two areas are often forgotten about, which is why we often see older people with age spots on the backs of their hands. This is an area wear sunscreen would easily be washed off quickly, and the same goes for the tops of the feet if someone spends time wading along the shore or in the shallow end of a pool. It’s easy to burn these two areas, so you may need to apply more sunscreen or cover these areas more than you may realize.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Why You Need Sunburn Relief and How To Get It

SONY DSCWe’re gearing up for summer and both children and adults around the country will be unintentionally damaging their skin without meaning to. Hours spent outside without adequate protection will cause the skin to become red and painful to the touch. What is causing this reaction and what can you do for sunburn relief to help reverse both pain and the damage?

Let’s begin with the causes of sunburn: A sunburn is a form of radiation burn from overexposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation. The UV rays affect the epidermis, or outer layer of skin by contacting the melanin, which can only absorb some of the damaging UV rays. At first, the UV light causes the melanin to react, which is why our skin becomes tan. But further exposure to the radiation affects deeper layers of cells in the epidermis and causes damage. This is what causes a burn.

Once this kind of a burn occurs, the burnt layer of skin cells becomes red, hot and may blister. These cells are dying off and our immune system reacts by sending more blood flow to the area. Additionally, the damaged cells also send out chemicals that cause our nerve endings to be more sensitive and to feel painful to the touch.

After layers of skin cells have died in this way, the skin will peel away with the loss of moisture. And the new skin cells that begin to grow underneath need extra protection because they are very sensitive and vulnerable to UV rays.

Did You Know?
• You can still get a sunburn even when it’s cloudy. Up to 90% of UV light rays pass through clouds.

• It can take than 15 minutes for sun damage to occur in the skin.

• Sunlight reflected onto you by snow, ice, sand and water still has the ability to cause as much damage as direct sunlight.

• The sun’s rays have a greater effect at higher altitudes because the earth’s UV filtering decreases the higher up you go.

Tips for Sunburn Relief
So, how do you care for your skin in the event that you do get caught out in the sun for to long?

1. Experts recommend taking aspirin or ibuprofen within the first 24 hours after a bad burn to decrease inflammation and get the red out. As we discussed above, the redness indicates damage to the skin cells and by addressing this immediately, you not only provide much needed sunburn relief, but you can help restore the skin’s health.

2. If the pain is extreme, try a spray like Solarcaine that has Lidocaine and will not only help your skin retain moisture, but will also have a pain killing, numbing effect for ailing skin cells. NOTE: If the burn is accompanied by nausea or fever, a doctor should be called immediately.

3. Lather yourself in a good healing cream that contains an anti-inflammatory ingredient like aloe Vera. This will not only ease pain, but will also lock in vital moisture and give you a jumpstart on reducing the chances that your skin will eventually peel, get itchy and flake off.

4. After the pain has subsided and the skin has healed a bit, exfoliate your once-burned skin with an alpha hydroxy acid face wash or with an over-the-counter Retinol cream. This will urge your skin to grow new, healthy cells and increase the production of collagen.

Your skin is precious, so be sure to limit sun exposure in the future and to wear a high SPF sunscreen.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Healing Cream for Hot Spots on Animals

DSC_0071Over the years we have had an increasing number of customers telling us that they purchase Jeans Cream as a healing cream to use on their animals’ hot spots and other skin problems. So, we thought we’d dedicate an article to this aggravating skin condition that often has our animal friends chewing, licking and scratching like mad.

A hotspot (also known as moist dermatitis) is when an animal’s fur falls out in a little patch and the skin becomes inflamed and infected. The skin tends to look moist, red and may be oozing. It is usually painful to the animal and can be very itchy, which encourages your dog or cat to lick and scratch at the area. If your animal has a hotspot and won’t stop fussing with it, you may need to get a cone of shame from your vet and have your pet wear it until the sore has healed a bit.

So, what causes hot spots in the first place? Hot spots are much more common in animals with thick coats, dirty skin, and/ or moist skin. Allergies including environmental or food allergies, fleas – even one bite can do it! – and other insect bites and skin wounds can all be triggers. Sometimes an odor can be present, which could indicate further cause for concern.

On occasion, a hot spot can be created by the pet if he or she is experiencing underlying pain. For example, if the dog has a sore hip or knee joint, he or she might begin gnawing at the skin over that area to try and create relief. If the dog’s vet doesn’t know about this underlying issue, they may label it a hot spot when the problem is deeper than that.

There are also some mental or emotional issues that can cause cats and dogs to begin chewing on their skin. If the animal has separation anxiety or obsessive compulsive disorder, they might resort to aggravating their skin by chewing and the same thing could happen where he or she is diagnosed with a hot spot, but the real cause is the distress underneath.

When it comes time to treat the animal, vets often begin by shaving the area to help see what is happening on the skin and also to clean the affected area and enable it to dry out. Then topical ointments, healing cream or sprays are used to disinfect and prevent further infection. Anti-histamines may be recommended to relieve itching. Sometimes oral antibiotics can be prescribed. And if the pet seems to be in a lot of pain, the vet may administer a prednisone shot (corticosteroid).

Most of our customers who are using our product with their cats’ or dogs’ hot spots report applying it after the wound has dried out somewhat. Obviously, if the problem is too much moisture which is exacerbating the possibility of infection, you won’t want to add any kind of moisturizing element. When it’s just a matter of healing the skin more quickly, customers have reported our product as a wonderful healing cream.

We recommend applying the cream for animals the same way someone would for a human. Apply it to the area 3-5 times a day and especially at night.