Eczema or atopic dermatitis is a common skin rash in children below the age of five. Normally, this rash can be seen on the scalp or cheeks. However, it can easily spread to other body parts such as the chest, legs, and arms. The rash may manifest as dry and scaly skin or as tiny red spots. If your baby scratches these red spots, it may lead to infection. In addition, your baby’s skin may become scarred over time. If the skin rash is not treated, coping with eczema in babies and children can be problem.
Causes Of Baby Eczema
Eczema is more common in families where a close relative has had the same condition in the past. This does not mean your baby is safe if this is not the case. It can be triggered by environmental allergens such as pollen. In certain instances, it can be triggered by allergens in the food your baby is eating. Skin irritants such as soap, wool, heat, and lotions can also aggravate the skin rash. As a child grows older, the condition becomes less severe.
Treatment And Care
There is no standard form of treating eczema. However, you can use a wide range of skin care tips to manage your baby’s skin rash. According to a study published in the journal “Pediatrics”, soaking your baby in a diluted bleach bath can help treat eczema. Before using the bleach bath treatment at home, it is wise to consult your doctor. The study researchers recommend using two teaspoons of bleach for every gallon of water.
While soaking your baby, make sure the water with bleach does not get anywhere near the face. As a safety precaution, apply a layer of petroleum jelly on your baby’s face. In addition to the bleach bath, your doctor may recommend emollients. These creams help your baby’s skin retain water. At the same time, the skin becomes less itchy. Topical steroids may come in handy if the skin inflammation is serious. In the most severe cases, you doctor may prescribe oral steroids. Before using oral steroids, consult a qualified dermatologist.
Keeping your Baby Comfortable
Even though eczema is manageable, scratching is the biggest problem. To discourage constant scratching, it is necessary to take care of your baby’s skin. To begin with, trim your baby’s nails to reduce skin damage. Since eczema tends to flare up when it is hot, buy cotton clothing for your baby. This should extend to your baby’s sleeping cot as well. Devise activities to keep your child distracted from focusing on the skin condition.
Coping with eczema in babies and children is not hard. Even though watching your baby in the throes of a skin rash is distressing, worrying too much will not help. The good news is most infants outgrow this condition after 12 months of age. Stick to your doctor’s advice and keep your baby’s skin well moisturized. At the same time, avoid using irritants such as strong detergents. Eliminate foods that may contain allergens from your baby’s diet.