How To Survive Hell's Itch
Start writing a post

Before this past week, I have never heard of Hell's Itch and if I had, I honestly wouldn't have thought that it had anything to do with sunburn. However, after a whole unfortunate situation and much Google searching, here I am. This new and improved me knows not only what Hell's Itch is, but also first hand what it feels like and I am committed to warning everyone about it.

For those who don't know, I have a very fair skin tone, which is a nice way of saying translucent. I've never been a tanner by any sense of the word, I don't like to tan because it's boring to me, and my skin certainly does not like to tan either. Regardless, I understand that paleness stands out quite a bit in the summer, especially now that I'm living on an actual island.

So here I was, thinking maybe I would actually try to tan for once so my paleness wouldn't blind people. I lay in the sun by the pool for an hour. An hour. I even timed it, a half hour on my stomach and a half hour on my back. Of course, I applied sunscreen, but only to my face and my tattoos because I wanted to ensure a good tan. I realize now that that doesn't actually make any sense, but I'm a different person now than I was last week.

About two hours after I come inside, I realize that I am a lobster. I have undergone a species transformation in an hour and I am no longer a pale human girl, but a gigantic sad lobster. Everything hurts, you know the drill, I'm sure you've probably had sunburn before. Fast forward 48 hours.

After a long workday, I'm happy it's finally Friday and I take a shower and climb into bed, ready to pass out until noon on Saturday. You know what? That certainly did not happen because out of nowhere, I get an urge to itch my back so intense I actually yelp. Of course, I give it a scratch. I had assumed that this would fix it but I was sadly very wrong.

Instead, the itch got much worse and spread across my whole back and felt like it extended below my skin. I then decided to itch it harder and everywhere, which still helped nothing, in fact, it made everything worse and added immense pain. Luckily, this whole ordeal only lasted around 15 to 20 minutes for me. However, for some, it lasts much longer.

Hell's Itch is a condition that can come with even a minor sunburn.

It's relatively uncommon, explaining why most people have never heard of it. It typically sets in around 48 hours after the sunburn occurs, and can last up to the same amount of time. Some people have described the feeling as similar to fire ants crawling in your skin and find the pain unbearable enough to visit the hospital. When the affected area is scratched the pain worsens, leaving the victim to feel helpless.

Since not much is known medically about the condition, home remedies are the best you can do to treat it. I personally find that regular aloe with no additives works the best. Another tip is to try rubbing gently at the affected area to alleviate the itch without causing pain or more damage to the tissue.

While it is possible to power through the intense itch and pain at home with treatment, it is altogether best to attempt to avoid it. When outside, always wear sunscreen. If you know that you're like me and don't tan very easily, don't attempt it without plenty of protection from the rays of the sun. Stay safe!

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Everyone's been here. And, truthfully, it sucks. But in order to move on and get past something you need to allow yourself to feel it for what it is--all of the heartbreak and pain--and then you can start to take steps move on.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Christmas season is coming to an end, but it's not too late to get some last-minute movies in! Unfortunately, this year didn't look like a typical Christmas. While we can't have any big Christmas parties or family gatherings, we can still celebrate at home! Christmas is the best time for nostalgia, and we could all use some warm and fuzzy feelings as we wrap up a tough year and enter a new one that hasn't been proven any calmer, either.

As a kid who grew up in the 2000s, I can think of some of my favorite staple Christmas movies. If you're looking for recommendations or just a walk down memory lane, check out the list below.

Keep Reading... Show less

As we enter the new year, you might be looking for a great show to kick-off 2021. Look no further, I have the perfect recommendation. "The Wilds" was released on Amazon Prime last month and has been gaining traction steadily since then. This series of 10 one-hour episodes tells the stories of eight girls who find themselves on a deserted island after their plane crashed while they are on their way to a resort. Unlike other survival shows, there's a bit more to the story than what first meets the eye. This show is unique in characters, storytelling methods, and plot.

If you aren't convinced yet, allow me to provide you with a list of further persuasion.

Keep Reading... Show less

10 Things TikTok Made Me Buy, And Now My Life Is So Much Better

Where would I be without my Revlon hair dryer or CeraVe skin products?! Thanks, TikTok.


TikTok is a great way to see what products are trending. People are sharing tips and tricks about items that they use to make their life happier, healthier, or just easier.

Keep Reading... Show less

Online classes and virtual reality in general have been the staple of 2020. One day in March, everything shut down and we all had to learn how to work, teach, study, do therapy, and take classes remotely without much preparation. So, it's been a roller-coaster experience, and definitely not what we expected.

Keep Reading... Show less

11 TV Characters Who Are Irritating BEYOND Belief

Maybe they never really did anything seriously wrong, but oh my god they are annoying af.


Have you ever been watching your favorite show, all comfortable and relaxed, and then that one character that you just can't stand pops up on the screen and ruins your mood? I know I certainly have. These characters aren't necessarily evil or horrible people, but they do have personalities that make them incredibly irritating. They're the kind of characters that make you want to yell at the writer, "what the hell were you thinking with this one?" Perhaps they have never hurt a fly, but it doesn't matter since their character just straight-up sucks.

By the way, some of my arguments contain spoilers, so fair warning.

Keep Reading... Show less

20 Songs You Should REALLY Add To Your Winter Playlist

Watch the snow gently falling out your window and put these songs on to get in the winter mood.


For the majority of these songs, I can't really explain why, but they remind me of winter. Maybe it's their slow pace, their magical synth sounds, or their melancholy lyrics, but all of these songs give me winter vibes. If you're looking to add some songs to your winter playlist, give these ones a listen.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments