A common tip for reddened skin after sunbathing is quark. But can the dairy product really alleviate the symptoms? The main complaint of sunburn is inflammation, which is shown by reddening of the skin, says Professor Peter Elsner. He is a dermatologist and spokesman for the German Dermatological Society.

Cooling the skin helps against pain or burning. Quark or quark wraps can also be a useful method. “However, none of the curd’s substances can penetrate the skin and combat the inflammation. It has a purely cooling effect.”

The lactic acid bacteria contained in the product ensure that the pH value becomes acidic and the skin’s protective acid mantle is strengthened, but this has no effect on the inflammation caused by sunburn, explains Elsner. Alternatively, gels, cooling wraps or cooling pads can be used in addition to curd for cooling. Cooling pads should not be placed directly on the skin, but a cloth should be used between them. There is nothing against using curd for mild sunburn.

But anyone who has meant far too well with the sun should no longer just resort to home remedies. “If the sunburn causes severe pain or causes blisters, you must go to a doctor’s office. Severe sunburns can also lead to large areas of skin peeling off, which can be dangerous. There is a risk of infection.” Even if fever or chills occur due to sunburn, you should definitely see a doctor. Sunburn can be treated by a doctor with cortisone therapy to reduce the inflammation caused.

Peter Elsner advises: “A sunburn must be protected from the sun until it has really healed.” It is best to protect sunburn from UV radiation with textiles. “If you have a mild sunburn, you can also apply sunscreen. If the skin is open or blistered, you should not apply sunscreen.”

The following applies to the next sunbathing: Protect your skin from sunburn with clothing with a sufficiently high sun protection factor. From a dermatological point of view, the most important thing is to avoid any sunburn, says Peter Elsner. “We know that the number of sunburns – especially in childhood – has a significant influence on the risk of black skin cancer. This is the most dangerous skin cancer that can occur even in young people.”

When you get sunburned, the aggressive UVB radiation damages the epidermis. The affected area may experience reddening of the skin, tension and pain or, in the case of severe sunburn, blistering. “Most of the damaged skin cells die, but some cells also retain damage in their genome and this change can lead to skin cancer years or decades later. The skin does not forget, every sunburn we have once gets us later once.”