How to deal with Eczema
Dealing with Eczema Jack has had Eczema since he was 6 months old and up until recently it was completely under control. It flared up occasionally but as long as I moisturised those rough patches of skin, they would fade and disappear quite completely. That was until around a month ago where Jack started itching like crazy. I don't mean occasional itching in one particular spot, i mean itching all over the body. Itching so severe that he was covered in small cuts caused by him scratching himself. A combination of doctor-sought advice and our own attempts at controlling it mean that he currently has stopped itching and his skin though not perfect by any means, is a lot better than it was.
I have found this period of time quite difficult. Jack has been upset and has been telling me he is itchy and his skin is sore so if this advice helps anybody then I will be really glad I talked about it.
1) Go to the doctors This is the very first thing I will say. Seriously, book an appointment now. Don't feel like you are wasting their time. My doctor was very helpful and Jack's Eczema has really improved since we saw him. They will be able to give you the right prescription to help improve your child's skin. For Jack this was steroid cream and several other concoctions. I did initially feel that I was overreacting and did even think that something else could have irritated Jack's skin but by the time I saw the doctor (it took a week to get an appointment) I was really glad i had decided to go.
2) Bath your child less and be careful about what the products you use in the bath Bathing a child with Eczema too often can cause their skin to dry out and can make the condition worse. I was bathing Jack every two days but have now reduced this to twice a week. I make sure that I wash his bottom, face and hands everyday. Eczema prone children often have very sensitive skin so you need to be careful about the products you apply to it. Baby washes and shampoos often contain irritants that can affect your child's Eczema. I do not use many products on Jack's skin at bath time. I only use Oilatum Bath Foam. This is a product that I add to the bath. This was recommended to my by my doctor and was the product that I was using on his skin prior to the appointment.
3) Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise I cannot say this enough. Prior to my appointment at the doctors, I was moisturising Jack's skin with Oilatum Cream once per day. He advised me to simply increase how often I was applying it to his skin. I now apply it three times a day and it really has made a huge difference on Jack's skin. It's best to moisturise just after your child has a bath or shower as the skin is still moist. I also like to make sure that Jack's hand and face are covered in moisturiser.. These are the areas of the skin that are exposed most often to the elements so I make sure that I try and protect these areas.
4) Keep your child's nails clean and short Make sure you keep on top of nail cutting. Even with short nails Jack managed to create cuts on his skin so I dread to think how his skin would have looked if it was slightly longer. Also make sure you keep the nail's clean. Cuts can become infected and you don't want this to become a problem alongside your child's Eczema.
5) If the Eczema flares up, put your toddler in loose clothing Jack's Eczema flared up just as we were having warmer weather. I think this had a negative effect on Jack's Eczema as his skin become to hot and the itching then increased. I found putting him in loose clothing prevented his skin becoming irritated further by fabrics.