Infection in early life can increase a baby's sensitivity to pain.

Researchers from Oxford's Department of Pediatrics have discovered that infection can increase a baby's sensitivity to pain, which may last longer than the infection.

When a baby's blood test result suggested they may have an infection, which required further antibiotic treatment, the researchers continued to look for signs of pain or discomfort.

They found that babies with laboratory markers of inflammation associated with infection displayed more sensitivity to pain.

This was measured by recording changes in each baby's brain activity, leg reflex withdrawal activity, facial expression and heart rate in response to a clinically-required heel prick blood test.

These babies were also more sensitive to touch, which is consistent with clinical reports that infections can make babies more irritable.

While behavioral signs of pain, such as facial grimacing, did not appear to be exaggerated by the presence of inflammation, this may be because fighting an infection can cause babies to be more lethargic and fatigued.

If you do wind up with a margarita burn, a cold compress should help treat it, but if it blisters or itches, you should see your doctor or a dermatologist.

This study also suggests that increased pain sensitivity may be maintained after the infection has been treated, supporting other laboratory studies which show that early-life infection can have a long-term influence on pain sensitivity that lasts into adulthood.