It’s almost summer! While most people in Las Vegas are excited for warm days full of blue skies and sunshine, those with a sun allergy are running inside to the land of air conditioning and shade.
A telltale sign of a sun allergy is the development of an itchy red rash after exposure to sunlight. The most common type of this allergy is polymorphic light eruption, also known as sun poisoning. While no one knows for certain why some individuals have this intense reaction to the sun and others don’t, allergy specialists think the condition may be genetic. It is also thought to be caused by certain medications, chemicals or medical conditions that make an individual’s skin more sensitive to sun.
Sun Allergy Symptoms
Redness, itching, pain, tiny blisters, scaling, crusting, bleeding, blisters or hives are the most common symptoms of a sun allergy. These symptoms typically develop only after sun exposure. How long an individual must be in the sun before these symptoms occur is entirely dependent on that person.
Sun Allergy Treatment
Mild cases usually clear up on their own without treatment. If you experience an unusual or especially bothersome reaction, contact your Las Vegas allergy specialist. In order to make a diagnosis, your allergist will examine your skin. If they are unsure, additional testing may be ordered. The following tests may be completed:
- Ultraviolet light testing. This test is used to see how your skin reacts to different wavelengths of light.
- Photopatch testing. This test involves placing substances on your skin and seeing how they react when you are exposed to sunlight.
- Blood tests and skin samples. These tests are not usually needed to diagnose a sun allergy; they are ordered if your allergist thinks your symptoms are caused by an undying condition, like lupus.
A treatment plan will be put together once your Las Vegas doctor has determined if you have a sun allergy. Those suffering from mild cases will be advised to avoid the sun. For a more serious reaction, over-the-counter or prescription corticosteroid creams are needed. Severe reactions may require an oral corticosteroid or malaria medication.
If you think you may have a sun allergy, visit your Las Vegas allergist for an accurate diagnosis.
Call Nevada Ear + Sinus Institute at (702) 735-7668 for more information or to schedule an appointment.