What Should Parents Know About Baby Eczema
Eczema in babies is common. Many babies grow out of it, or at least see their symptoms improve over time.
We are not always sure what causes eczema in babies, explains Stephanie Jacks, M.D., a pediatric dermatologist in Roseville, California. Genetic factors certainly play a role, and babies who have at least one parent with eczema are two to three times more likely to get eczema. However, some babies have eczema even with no family history of the condition.
In adults, eczema usually appears as skin that is rough and dry. But the skin condition can show a little differently in infants. Itchy cheeks are usually one of the first signs of infant eczema, Dr. Clark says.
In most infants, eczema is not due to an allergy to foods or other triggers but instead reflects an intrinsic tendency for skin that is more dry and easily irritated by temperature, clothing and other external triggers, says pediatric dermatologist Kara Shah, M.D., Ph.D., of Kenwood Dermatology in Cincinnati, Ohio. As such, the basis for treatment is good skin care.
To treat infant eczema, you might try keeping baby’s nails short to prevent scratching, giving baby a lukewarm bath and patting baby’s skin dry. Immediately after that, apply any topical medicine prescribed by your doctor and finish with a moisturizing cream.
Can You Prevent Baby Eczema
Unfortunately, you cannot prevent eczema with 100 percent certainty. Remember that genetics is a big factor for eczema, but you can minimize your babys risk for eczema.
The first and most important step is to avoid the common environmental triggers, as well as the previously listed inflammatory foods.
Youll also want to:
- Avoid heat and sweat
- Keep nails short and use mittens if baby scratches frequently
- Use breathable natural fabrics like organic cotton only
- Avoid using products with fragrancesthis includes laundry detergent!
- It may seem obvious, but cigarette smoke can be an irritant
What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider
- How can you tell that I have breast eczema?
- If I dont have breast eczema, what other skin condition might I have?
- Is there a specific brand of moisturizer that you recommend?
- Is there a prescription cream or ointment that you can prescribe?
- Should I see a dermatologist or another specialist?
- What soaps, lotions, makeup and other skin care products should I avoid?
- What medications do you recommend?
- What at-home treatments do you recommend?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Breast eczema is annoying and can be embarrassing, but its common and very normal. It can affect your quality of life, particularly if its very itchy or makes you feel self-conscious. However, with a proper skin care routine and treatment, you can reduce its impact. See your healthcare provider as soon as you notice signs of breast eczema.
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What Causes Eczema Flare
The main causes of child eczema flare-ups include:
- Too much bathing
Even though there are many factors that can lead to an eczema flare-up, treatment is simple and effective, regardless of what caused the reaction in the first place. Before we discuss the seven ways to treat and prevent child eczema flare-ups, lets find out a bit more about the condition itself.
How To Treat And Prevent Childhood Eczema
Eczema, or atopic dermatitis, is a common skin problem that can affect newborns, babies, children, and adults. Symptoms include dry, red, itchy skin that can flare up in the presence of a number of allergens and environmental factors.
In babies, eczema flare-ups can first appear between birth and three months. With the right treatment, those flare-ups will eventually disappear, but the potential for future flare-ups will always remain. For children, then, prevention is the key to keeping these uncomfortable dry, itchy patches at bay.
But what exactly is eczema? What causes flare-ups to occur? And what is the difference between baby, child, and adult eczema? The experts at Mustela will answer all those questions and give you seven steps to treat and prevent your childs eczema flare-ups.
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See A Doctor If Otc Moisturizers Dont Work
Applying moisturizer twice a day, especially after cleansing your face, helps your skin retain moisture. If over-the-counter moisturizing creams dont work, or if your facial eczema doesnt respond to self-treatment, see a doctor.
Your doctor might recommend other therapies, including:
- prescription topical corticosteroids to reduce inflammation
- prescription antihistamine
How Is Eczema Treated
There is no cure for eczema. But treatments can help with symptoms. The doctor will recommend different treatments based on how severe the symptoms are, the child’s age, and where the rash is. Some are “topical” and applied to the skin. Others are taken by mouth.
Topical moisturizers. Skin should be moisturized often . The best time to apply moisturizer is after a bath or shower, with the skin patted dry gently. Ointments and creams are best because they contain a lot of oil. Lotions have too much water to be helpful.
Topical corticosteroids, also called cortisone or steroid creams or ointments. These ease skin inflammation. It’s important not to use a topical steroid prescribed for someone else. These creams and ointments vary in strength, and using the wrong strength in sensitive areas can damage the skin, especially in infants.
Other topical anti-inflammatory medicines. These include medicines that change the way the skin’s immune system reacts.
Medicine taken by mouth. These can include antihistamines to help itchy kids sleep better at night, antibiotics if a rash gets infected by bacteria, and corticosteroid pills or other medicines that suppress the immune system.
Other types of treatment can include:
- wet wraps: damp cloths placed on irritated areas of skin
- bleach baths: bathing in very diluted bleach solution
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How To Find A Food Trigger
Some are obvious. If your child eats lobster for the first time and breaks out in hives 15 minutes later, itâs probably not hard to figure out.
But with eczema, it’s often tougher. Symptoms may not show up for days after you eat something. If you do find a trigger food and get rid of it, that may help. Still, it may not make the eczema go away. Remember, 2 out of 3 kids with eczema don’t have a food allergy at all.
That’s why working with a doctor is so important. They can guide you toward the real cause through tests like:
Elimination diets. If your doctor thinks a food may be harmful, they may ask you not to give it to your kid for 10 to 14 days. Watch to see if it makes a difference.
Food challenges. After you’ve taken a food out of your child’s diet, your pediatrician might want you to add a small amount back in to see if it causes symptoms. They may want to do this in the office, just in case your child has a reaction.
Skin testing. A doctor can take an extract of the food and use it to scratch the skin lightly. If the area swells up, that could be an allergic reaction. However, it’s not always accurate.
Blood tests. RAST — a radioallergosorbent test — can check for special cells in the blood that signal specific food allergies. Again, it’s not always accurate. Other lab tests can check for cells that trigger swelling.
Tracking down a food trigger can take patience and detective work.
Natural Remedies For Baby Eczema
Posted by allnaturalmothering
Baby eczema, medically known as atopic dermatitis, is a common skin condition that effects an estimated 10% of all children. If your baby is one of them, then you know how uncomfortable this dry, scaly, often itchy skin rash can be for little ones.
Luckily, theres a lot you can do to help your babys eczema flare-ups and relieve their discomfort!
Today, Im going to share some of the top natural remedies for baby eczema that you can try right away. These include: probiotics, cod liver oil, vitamin D, homeopathic remedies, coconut oil, shea butter, and oatmeal baths. Read on to learn more!
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How Does Baby Eczema Affect My Childs Skin
Baby eczema makes your babys skin dry, itchy and sensitive. This happens because your babys protective barrier on the outermost layer of their skin is weak and doesnt work as expected. Their symptoms can last for a couple of weeks each time theres a flare-up of symptoms.
Baby eczema is a chronic condition, where it can come and go unexpectedly. Some children grow out of the condition when they reach adulthood but will still experience symptoms of dry skin or mild flare-ups throughout their life.
Will My Baby Have Eczema All Her Life
In some babies with atopic dermatitis, the condition stays put. But, fortunately, eczema clears up in many babies by the time they turn 4 years old.
From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When Youre Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.
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Does Eczema In Babies Go Away
There is good news: Most children outgrow their eczema.
According to the experts at the University of Iowa Stead Family Childrens Hospital, many children see a big improvement in baby eczema by the age of three. About 66 percent of children with childhood or baby eczema outgrow it and only suffer from occasional dry skin during their teen years.
If your babys eczema does not let up, try keeping a journal to identify the triggers, then work to avoid those triggers. In the meantime, you can ease symptoms by treating baby eczema naturally.
The Causes Of Eczema In Babies
There is no one cause of eczema in babies. However, there are several factors that affect your babys likelihood of developing eczema, as well as maternal factors and environmental factors.
Genetics play a role in eczema. If there are atopic and allergic conditions in the family, your baby is at a higher risk of developing eczema. But this is only one piece of the puzzle genes still rely on diet, lifestyle and environmental factors to trigger a condition.
Another big contributing factor is food allergies and intolerances. Studies have shown that around 30% of infants with eczema have or develop a food allergy. Once you consider intolerances and sensitivities, food triggers play a role in most cases of eczema.
Many of the root causes of eczema live in the gut. Leaky gut and dysbiosis are the two most common gut health concerns for babies and young children. Most babies experience digestive symptoms such as reflux, constipation, loose bowels or mucus in their stools. All of these are signs that there is an underlying gut health concern.
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What Are The Risk Factors Associated With Eczema
There are numerous risk factors associated with the skin during the problem of eczema. Here is a list of some for the people who may be prone to the condition more than others:
- People who live in freezing temperatures and climate encounter the situation of eczema more
- People who have dry skin can develop the disease more than the people who have oily skin, healthy skin or combination skin
- People who use perfumes, powder, cosmetics, and deodorants a lot may encounter the disease as well.
Natural Remedies For Babies With Eczema
Most often, creams, balms, butters and oils are recommended to treat baby eczema. Its important to be aware that lotions do not protect and seal in moisture well enough to work effectively as an eczema treatment. They are simple too thin.
Lets dive into my top seven recommendations for natural baby eczema remedies.
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Gentle Soaps And Detergents
Laundry detergent can contain harsh chemicals that aggravate eczema.
Many body washes and cleansers contain detergents, which help provide a soapy lather. Detergents and other lathering agents can dry out the skin, especially in people with eczema.
Bar soaps can also be harsh on the skin because of their alkalinity.
Try using a gentle, no-lather, fragrance-free cleanser. Avoid products with rough particles for scrubbing or exfoliating, as these can further irritate the skin.
Many people with eczema also find that switching to a more gentle, fragrance- or color-free laundry detergent can help improve symptoms.
Additionally, try skipping fabric softener, which lingers on clothes and often contains fragrances and chemicals that can irritate the skin.
Sitting next to a fireplace or near a furnace may feel good, but it can worsen eczema symptoms. The hot, dry air can dehydrate the skin and aggravate the itchiness of eczema.
Use a humidifier during the dry winter months and avoid getting too close to heaters and fireplaces.
Effective Treatment Begins With Sunscreen
Whether youre treating the dark spots on your own or seeing a dermatologist, using sunscreen is essential when youll be outside. Applied daily, sunscreen can prevent new dark spots and patches. It can also help to clear existing ones.
Youll want to apply sunscreen to all skin that clothing wont cover.
To get the best result, dermatologists also recommend wearing a wide-brimmed hat when youre outside.
Sunscreen is essential to effective treatment
To get the protection you need to prevent dark spots, use a sunscreen that offers all of the following:
- SPF 30 or higher
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Keep Away Fragrances Dyes And Chemicals
Many parents dont realize that even a natural fragrance can be irritating to an infants skin. A babys skin can be extremely sensitive, and they can develop allergies to the simplest of things.
Moreover, detergents, soaps, lotions and even baby shampoos and wipes can include harsh chemicals and dyes. Therefore, you should only be using fragrant free and dye free products on your baby. Try to find all-natural products for everyday purposes as much as possible.
Dont forget about the dyes in foods. Food dye can be just as irritating for your infant. Be sure to buy natural foods without dyes and other unnatural ingredients for your baby.
Causes Of Baby Eczema
It can be difficult to determine exactly whats causing your babys eczema. Its a skin condition that some people seem to inherit and is not spread through contact. There does seem to be a higher likelihood of suffering from eczema if a family member also has the condition.
Figuring out what causes your little one to have a flare-up is important to keep their skin comfortable and healthy. Here are some common causes of baby eczema:
- General dry skin: some babies have seasonal flare-ups because their skin tends to be drier in the winter. Anytime your little ones skin is especially dry it may put them at risk for a flare up
- Allergens: anything that your little one is allergic too can result in an eczema flare-up. This includes animal dander, pollen, and foods
- Soaps, lotion, detergents and fragrance: soaps, lotions, and anything with fragrance may cause flare-ups. For babies with eczema prone skin, its best to opt for all-natural, unscented, mild products. Ideally, look for something thats designed for sensitive skin
- Dry Air: not surprisingly, if you live in a dry climate or the air is very dry in your home, your baby may get dry skin which results in a flare-up. Try running a humidifier in your babys room to help with this
- Wool or other rough fabric: these types of materials can irritate the skin and trigger your babys eczema
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This Post Has 4 Comments
My son is 11 months has eczema since 2 months, I have tried so many different creams it is different for every child. I recently tried Bepanten nappy cream and it works really well I havent had to use steroid creams since. I also use Oilatum in his bath. His pediatrician says he should grow out of it by 2/3
My one year old has had eczema since he was born It progressed from milk spots to dermatitis to eczema. I went to the doctor and then onto a dermatologist. I have tried many different things and found that the things that work the best for us are:
-Keep baby cool, dont overdress, same as you or less if the hot baby.-Mild cortisone cream on the bad bits.-Barrier cream twice a day we have two baths and put on just after. I use a big jar of soft paraffin just from the chemist it is cheaper than a lot of the creams because we use so much and less sticky than Vaseline.-I avoid soaps as they do tend to dry out the skin.-It also gets worse if he has some foods so keep an eye on that too.
Good luck! Fingers crossed they both grow out of it.
Ive heard petroleum jelly can be used, but check with your Dr. first. Also, dont wear tight-fitting clothing on the affected area.
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How We Made Our Picks For The Best Eczema Creams For Babies
We relied on several different factors to pick the best eczema creams for babies. First, we analyzed a range of products and determined which ones were most effective, particularly seeking out options that were given a seal of accpetance by the National Eczema Association. The What to Expect editorial team also conducted research focusing on popularity, innovation, design, quality, value and ease of use for baby eczema creams. We also sought out input from pediatricians and pediatric dermatologists, and road-tested products at home with our own families. And no roundup would be complete without checking with parents in the What to Expect community to hear their thoughts on the best eczema creams for babies.
Here, the best baby eczema creams to help moisturize your little one’s dry, irritated skin.
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