Can You Be Allergic To Sunlight?

It’s common knowledge that being exposed to the Sun too long can be dangerous, especially if you have sensitive skin. But is it really possible to be allergic to Sunlight?

Sunlight can trigger immune system reactions. Some people can suffer from itchy eruptions or areas of redness and inflammation on patches of sun-exposed skin, but these reactions typically resolve without treatment.

It is however possible to be allergic to the Sunlight.

Sun allergy is a term often used to describe a number of conditions in which an itchy red rash occurs on skin that has been exposed to sunlight. The most common form of sun allergy is polymorphic light eruption, also known as sun poisoning. Polymorphic light isn’t well-understood. The rash appears in people who have developed sensitivity to components of sunlight, and in particular ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or other sources, such as tanning beds or tanning lamps. This sensitivity is called photo sensitivity.

Some people have a hereditary type of sun allergy. Others develop signs and symptoms only when triggered by another factor — such as a medication or skin exposure to a plant such as wild parsnip or limes.

You may have heard of a condition known as photosensitivity that is sometimes referred to as a sun allergy.

Photo sensitivity reactions include solar urticaria. A person who suffers from solar urticaria develops big itchy welts within minutes of sun exposure.

The hives typically last for minutes or hours. A person can be prone to developing solar urticaria for a very long time, sometimes indefinitely. People with large affected areas sometimes have headaches and wheezing and feel dizzy, weak, and nauseated.

Sun allergy can be difficult to treat, but it’s not impossible find a cure. People who have a severe sun allergy may need to take preventive measures and wear sun-protective clothing. Doctors may prescribe histamine (H1) blockers, antimalarial drugs, corticosteroids, sunscreens, or ultraviolet (UV) light therapy

Scientists don’t fully understand why some people suffer from sun allergy, but they assume it’s a condition that is similar to food allergy or seasonal allergy.