Cade Huckabay of Texas wound up with a golf-ball-sized dent in his forehead when he messed with his swollen and sunburned forehead. The dent became prominent when he moved around fluid that had built up under his swollen skin in response to his severe sunburn.
In a rare case of sun exposure, this was most likely a first-degree burn.
Huckabay posted photos to Twitter on December 4. The photos drew comparisons to cartoon characters and aliens, as well as sympathetic replies with similar burns and stories of lessons in sun care.
Huckabay got the sunburn because he shaved his head for the first time, then went outside to mow the lawn. The resulting sun damage made his head swell.
Huckabay took a series of photos of his inflamed skin, he touched his head with an exploring finger and left a dent in his forehead. Just that tiny amount of pressure left a shockingly deep dent in his swollen head.
‘At one point I could put a dent in my forehead and it would stay there for like half an hour,’ he wrote on Twitter.
Twitter user Maddy Drachler replied with a photo of her own swollen, dented forehead.
‘We all need a lesson in proper sun care,’ she wrote with the post.
‘In some cases, a severe sunburn can cause so much inflammation that the skin can become swollen, known as edema,’ says New York City dermatologist Joshua Zeichner.
‘Depending on how much fluid accumulates, you may be able to push it away with your finger, creating what looks like a dent in the skin,’ he says.
Dr. Zeichner advises treating a burn like his with: ‘a milk compress can help calm inflamed skin as well, as proteins in the milk coat and soothe the skin.’
He said that applying aloe can soothe the burn without locking heat into the skin, and anti-inflammatory pills like ibuprofen ‘can calm inflammation from the inside out.’
When the burn becomes bearable, ‘I advise applying a petrolatum-based moisturizer to form a protective seal over the skin’s surface.
‘The newest generation of these moisturizers even come in easy to spread lotion formulations that won’t weigh the skin down.’
Huckabay treated his bulging burn with Advil and ice, which ‘got the job done.’
‘If your sunburn forms a blister or if you develop open or raw skin visit your local dermatologist or in severe cases even the emergency room,’ says Dr. Zeichner.
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