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Sunburn hospital cases on the rise

The health risks associated with sunburn are now common knowledge. It is widely known that getting burnt is directly linked to skin cancer and that staying safe in the sun should be a top priority.

Despite this, a significant number of people are still failing to take the necessary precautions and are allowing themselves to get burnt in pursuit of a tan, or simply because they forget to wear sun cream.

As temperatures have risen across the UK in July, hospitals all over the country have seen an increased number of Brits coming to them with badly burned skin. For example, the Surrey Mirror has reported the level of patients visiting East Surrey Hospital for this reason in the first 18 days of July was double that for the whole of June.

However, going to an accident and emergency ward should only be required in extremely severe cases of sunburn, as normally this is a condition doctors can do little about.

Eloise Clarke, a spokesperson for the hospital, said: “People with sunburn should ask their pharmacist for advice, or see their GP if they have sunburn and feel faint, dehydrated or have severe blistering.

“If the GP surgery is closed they should call the GP telephone number to hear a message about who to contact for medical advice or call 111.”

This sentiment has been echoed by the East of England Ambulance Service, which is concerned about the number of people calling 999 after getting burned in the sun.

Oskan Edwardson, associate director of special service operations at the organisation, urged people to think twice before dialling for an ambulance due to sunburn, as the condition does not require urgent medical treatment.

The symptoms of sunburn will heal naturally over a relatively short space of time, but it is the long-term effects that are most worrying. Getting burnt causes irreversible damage to the skin that may lead to skin cancer several years later, which means it is crucial to do everything you can to stay protected.

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