Loading... Testing....

Experiencing sunburn while pregnant can be particularly concerning, as the skin's sensitivity increases during this time, leading to a higher risk of complications.

In this blog, we'll explore the potential risks associated with sunburn during pregnancy, offer practical tips for prevention, and suggest safe treatments to ensure you and your baby stay protected and healthy.

Do You Sunburn More Easily When Pregnant?

When you’re pregnant, your body goes through hormonal changes leading to an increase of estrogen and progesterone in your body. These hormones increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun [*]. This means that even a short amount of sun exposure can put you at a higher risk of getting sunburned.

So even if you aren’t spending more time than you usually do in the sun, you still run the risk of excessive sunburn if you aren’t properly protected.

What Are the Dangers of Getting Sunburn While Pregnant?

If you experience heightened sensitivity to the sun during pregnancy, you are at a greater risk for sunburn-related complications. Read on for a few to be aware of.


Sunburn can also lead to overheating which can also pose potential dangers to both you and your baby.

When your body temperature rises too high, it can lead to a condition called hyperthermia, or heatstroke, which can have adverse effects on fetal development. High body temperatures have been associated with an increased risk of birth defects and developmental issues [*].

In addition, overheating can cause discomfort, fatigue, and dizziness for the expecting mother.


Dehydration while pregnant can have some significant effects on both you and your baby. When you have sun poisoning your body loses moisture which can be especially concerning during pregnancy.

Becoming dehydrated can have adverse effects on both you and your baby, like a decrease in amniotic fluid levels [*]. Amniotic fluid provides protective cushioning for your baby inside the womb and if the levels decrease it could be potentially dangerous to your unborn child.


When sunburn is severe enough your skin can peel and blister. In some cases, if the burns are not treated properly you could potentially develop an infection [*]. Skin may leak pus or start to crust up at the site of infection and if not treated, the infection could potentially spread.

Ways to Avoid Sunburn During Pregnancy

To protect yourself from sunburn, it's best to take preventive measures. Here are a few tips to keep you safe:

Seek Shade

Seeking shade is paramount in preventing sunburn during pregnancy due to the heightened sensitivity of the skin to UV radiation. Prolonged exposure to the sun's rays can exacerbate the risk of sunburn, which not only causes discomfort but also poses potential risks to both maternal and fetal health [*].

By seeking shade, expectant mothers can significantly reduce their exposure to harmful UV rays, thereby lowering the likelihood of sunburn and its associated complications.

Staying in the shade also helps maintain a more comfortable body temperature, mitigating the risk of dehydration and heat-related illnesses during pregnancy.

Wear Protective Clothing

Wearing protective clothing is another way to mitigate the risk of sunburn and safeguard maternal and fetal health. Clothing acts as a physical barrier against harmful UV rays, reducing direct exposure to the skin and minimizing the likelihood of sunburn.

Opting for loose-fitting, tightly woven fabrics that cover the arms, legs, and torso provides an additional layer of defense against UV radiation.

Additionally, choosing clothing with built-in UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) offers enhanced sun protection.

Use Sunscreen

Using sunscreen is an effective way to protect the skin from harmful UV rays and prevent sunburn. The increased sensitivity of the skin to sunlight during pregnancy heightens the risk of sunburn, which can lead to discomfort and potential complications.

Sunscreen forms a protective barrier on the skin, effectively blocking both UVA and UVB rays, thus reducing the risk of sunburn and minimizing the adverse effects of sun exposure.

Furthermore, sunscreen helps prevent skin damage, and premature aging and reduces the risk of skin cancer.

How to Treat Sunburn While Pregnant

If sunburn occurs, several home-based treatment methods are available to alleviate discomfort, provided the condition is not severe.

Here are a couple of simple solutions that you can use to easily treat your sunburn yourself.

Cool Compress

Using a cold compress to treat sunburn during pregnancy offers several benefits for expectant mothers. Firstly, it provides immediate relief by cooling the skin and alleviating the burning sensation associated with sunburn.

Secondly, cold compresses help reduce inflammation, minimizing redness and swelling in the affected area. Additionally, the moisture from the compress can hydrate dry, sunburned skin, promoting faster healing.

Importantly, cold compresses are entirely safe for use during pregnancy, offering a non-invasive and risk-free method of sunburn relief without potential harm to the developing fetus.

Overall, incorporating cold compress therapy into sunburn management during pregnancy can provide much-needed comfort and aid in the skin's recovery process [*].


Hydrating is an excellent way to treat sunburn while pregnant due to its multifaceted benefits for the body and skin. Sunburn not only causes discomfort but also dehydrates the skin, leading to dryness and flakiness.

Drinking plenty of water helps replenish lost fluids, promoting overall hydration and supporting the body's natural healing process.

Hydration also aids in maintaining skin elasticity and suppleness, which can be particularly beneficial in soothing sunburned skin.

Moreover, adequate hydration can help flush out toxins and reduce inflammation, further alleviating sunburn symptoms.

By prioritizing hydration, expectant mothers can nurture their bodies from within, enhancing their skin's resilience and promoting faster recovery from sunburn during pregnancy.


Moisturizing is a crucial aspect of treating sunburn while pregnant, offering relief and promoting skin healing. Sunburn often leads to dry, irritated skin, and moisturizers can help replenish lost moisture, soothe discomfort, and prevent excessive peeling.

Opting for gentle, pregnancy-safe moisturizers, such as those containing natural ingredients like aloe vera or coconut oil can provide additional benefits. Similarly, moisturizers containing ingredients like shea butter or coconut oil can help hydrate and nourish the skin while minimizing irritation. Incorporating these safe and gentle moisturizers into a sunburn treatment regimen can offer expectant mothers much-needed comfort and support during pregnancy.

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a natural remedy that can be highly effective in treating sunburn during pregnancy. Known for its soothing and cooling properties, aloe vera gel can provide immediate relief from the pain and discomfort associated with sunburn. Its anti-inflammatory and moisturizing effects help to reduce redness, swelling, and dryness, promoting faster healing of the damaged skin. Additionally, aloe vera is gentle and generally safe for use during pregnancy, making it an excellent option for expecting mothers looking for a natural way to treat sunburn without the risk of harmful chemicals. Applying pure aloe vera gel directly to the affected area can help restore hydration, soothe irritation, and support the skin's healing process.

When to See a Doctor

While most cases of sunburn can be treated at home, there are instances where medical attention may be necessary. Signs that indicate a need for medical evaluation include severe pain, blistering, fever, chills, nausea, dizziness, or signs of infection such as pus or red streaks extending from the affected area.

Additionally, if sunburn covers a large area of the body or if the expectant mother experiences any unusual symptoms, it's advisable to consult a healthcare provider.

Prompt medical intervention can help ensure proper management of sunburn complications and address any potential risks to both maternal and fetal health, providing peace of mind and appropriate care during pregnancy [*].

Sunburn and Pregnancy FAQ

Here are a few commonly asked questions that expecting mothers have about heat and sunlight exposure during pregnancy:

Is it alright to be in the sun while pregnant?

Even though there are risks associated with exposure to sunlight, pregnant mothers can still safely enjoy moderate sun exposure.

Research suggests that higher sun exposure during the first trimester may be linked to reduced risk of preterm birth, indicating potential benefits of moderate sunlight exposure during pregnancy.

Sunlight is also a great way to get vitamin D, which is essential to the production of serotonin, which can improve your mental health as well [*].

Consulting with a healthcare provider can provide personalized guidance on sun exposure during pregnancy, ensuring the safety and well-being of both mother and baby.

Can hot sun cause a miscarriage?

While there isn’t any kind of direct link to sunlight causing miscarriages, heat can still pose a potential threat.

In 2022 The Boston University of Public Health published a study that found a higher rate of miscarriages in hotter months of the year, with August having a 31% higher chance of a miscarriage than February [*].

However, there are various health risks for anyone, pregnant or not, when subjected to excessive heat.

What temperature is too hot to be outside?

Due to the fact that pregnant women overheat and get heat exhaustion faster than women who are not pregnant, it is important to be aware of what outdoor temperatures could be dangerous to you and your baby [*].

Your tolerance for hotter outdoor temperatures can depend on a variety of factors, but generally, if your internal body temperature reaches up to 102 degrees Fahrenheit, you could potentially be putting yourself and your baby at risk.

Studies have shown that overheating can increase the chances of your child having a neural tube defect, so it is best to avoid any weather with excessive heat [*].

The Bottom Line

Due to increased hormones while pregnant, you may be more sensitive to the sun and heat, but there are still many benefits to getting sunlight while pregnant.

As long as the proper preventative measures against sunburn and overheating are taken, you can enjoy the sunny weather while pregnant in moderation.

About MiracleCord

MiracleCord is a leading provider of cord blood banking services, dedicated to helping families preserve their baby's cord blood stem cells for potential future medical use.

With state-of-the-art laboratory facilities and a commitment to excellence, MiracleCord ensures the highest quality standards in cord blood storage. Give us a call today at 888.743.2673 or download our Free Info Kit.

DISCLAIMER: THE INFORMATION ON THIS WEBSITE IS NOT INTENDED TO BE USED AS MEDICAL ADVICE.The materials and information contained on the MiracleCord website is provided for educational and informational purposes only, and is not intended to, and does not constitute, medical or other health advice or diagnosis, and should not be used as such. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. If you are seeking personal medical advice, you should consult with a licensed physician. Always consult with a qualified health care provider regarding a medical condition.

Related Articles

Find Out Why Doctors Recommend MiracleCord
Save Today's Miracle for a Healthy Tomorrow™