How To Bathe A Baby If They Have Eczema
Rub a dub, dub. Time to bathe your little one in the tub! What if your babys skin is irritated from eczema, though?
If you notice your baby has a rash, bumps, flakiness, or patches of dry skin, they may have eczema. This skin condition can leave your little one itching and you wondering if a bath will help or hurt.
Bathing your baby can be a fun time for bonding, but if your baby has eczema youll want to keep a few extra things in mind. While you should always talk with your doctor for specific advice about any health concerns your baby may have, here are some basics to keep in mind.
Bathing your little one isnt that much different when they have eczema.
How To Run A Cleansing Bleach Bath
Guide shared by NHS Oxford University Hospitals
Their guidelines state using 150ml of bleach in at least 10cm depth of water for adults, while babies require 2ml of bleach for every 1L of water used.
It recommends using a “pure bleach” and lists options such as Tesco Everyday Value Thin Bleach, Milton Disinfecting Solution and Asda Smart Price Thin Bleach.
Patients should soak in the water for 10-15 minutes and the guide claims that a child’s face and hair can get wet in the bleach bath, as it shouldn’t be harmful to the eyes or mouth.
Undiluted bleach should not be used on the skin and if done so, it needs to be rinsed off immediately with water.
Bleach baths should not be used if there are any open wounds present on the skin as it can cause stinging or burning.
NHS Trust warns that bleach baths can cause mild discomfort in some patients. If skin irritation does occur, remove child from the bath and rinse off well with warm water.
What Type Of Products Can I Use To Bathe My Baby
There are a lot of products on the market specifically designed for small children with eczema.
When choosing a cleanser, youll want to look for a gentle one that doesnt irritate your babys skin.
For a moisturizer, youll also want one that locks in moisture to help the current flare-up while providing a barrier to prevent future ones.
Creams tend to be best for moisturizing , but youll want to watch out for allergenic preservatives and fragrances. For this reason, products that are hypoallergenic and fragrance-free tend to get the best ratings.
For the more severe cases of eczema, you may need to apply a steroid or antibacterial cream. You should check with your childs doctor before applying these to your newborn, though.
Recommended Reading: Strongest Over The Counter Eczema Cream
Pooled Analysis Of Efficacy
EASI and BSA assessments at 4-weeks were the only end-points and time-points in common across at least 3 studies . In pooled analyses, the mean ± std. dev. EASI and BSA decreased at 4 weeks vs. baseline in both the bleach and water bath groups, respectively . There were no significant differences observed between bleach vs. water baths at 4 weeks vs. baseline for EASI or BSA .a
EASI and BSA for bleach vs. water baths at 4 weeks compared with baseline
Mean EASI and BSA of bleach baths and water baths are presented for individual studies. Pooled mean ± std. dev. EASI and BSA of bleach baths and water baths are presented for 3 combined studies.
Bleach Baths And Eczema
Why do it? Many people carry bacteria called Staphylococcus aureus on their skin. This is particularly common in children and adults who suffer from eczema.
Eczema is an itchy skin condition, often worsened by a bacterial infection. Staphylococcus aureus can contribute to the flaring of the eczema and to ongoing skin inflammation. Complete eradication of Staphylococcus aureus in patients with eczema is very difficult, however some therapies can reduce the number of organisms which live on the skin. The use of regular diluted bleach baths in people with Staphylococcus aureus infected eczema has been shown to effective and safe in reducing the number of skin infections and improving eczema control.
An eczema bleach bath can kill bacteria on the skin, reducing itching, redness and scaling. This is most effective when combined with other eczema treatments, such as medication and moisturizer.
You May Like: One Year Old With Eczema
Bleach Baths For Eczema In Babies
In a previous article, I talked about seeing several doctors for my eczema child. A pediatric dermatologist was the one that recommended bleach baths for eczema in babies. Ever since then Ive been giving them which baths whenever their eczema flares up. I have found it especially helpful when managing their eczema with cream doesnt help. Sometimes cream/moisturizing is not enough. Sometimes you just need a little boost and thats where the bleach bath comes in.
There are affiliate links in this post. Read my disclosure policy to learn more.
How Does It Work What Are The Benefits
Bleach has several unique qualities and when added to a bath it reduces inflammation, moisturizes your skin and most importantly kills bacteria all in the same treatment. Bacteria like Staphylococcus aureus which 90% of people suffering from eczema have on their skin will be destroyed by this method of disinfection. The low levels of oxidation help calm inflammation by turning on some anti-inflammatory pathways in the skin
Bleach baths will also reduce chances of eczema flare-ups and will also control some of the symptoms. These are among the reasons why people who have regular bleach baths are less likely to get secondary bacterial infection e.g. staph infection which comes as side effects of eczema.
Also Check: How To Treat Oozing Eczema
How To Prepare Bleach Bath For Eczema
- Lukewarm water of about 40 gallons of water
- ¼ a cup or ½ a cup of bleach
Do these for 2 to 3 times weekly
Talk to a dermatologist before embarking on using bleach bath for eczema. Dont add any other ingredients or products to the bleach bath and if baths are painful stop using them and consult a doctor.
How Do I Give A Bleach Bath
This is a protocol for giving a bleach bath per American Academy of Dermatology :
- Speak with your doctor before starting a bleach bath
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup of bleach for 40 gallons of water in a bathtub,
- In the United States, bleach product may contain 6- 8.25% sodium hypochlorite
- Soak from neck down for 5 minutes
- Rinse the skin well
- Moisturize as soon as they are out of bath within 3 minutes
Also Check: Never Had Eczema Before Why Now
How Well Do Bleach Baths Work
First, its important to know that baths alone might help with some eczema symptoms. The National Eczema Association recommends lukewarm baths of 5 to 10 minutes at least once per day, followed immediately by applying topical medication and moisturizers to keep skin hydrated. The question is: Can adding bleach to some of those baths help?
Over the years, scientists who have done studies to investigate the effectiveness of bleach baths have found mixed results. A 2017 analysis published in the journal Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology that rounded up all the existing research on bleach baths found that they did provide some benefit but were no more effective at reducing eczema symptoms than regular water baths .
Still, more recent research suggests that bleach baths may do slightly more than regular bathing alone. In an analysis , researchers included some more recent studies, including data from some studies that were unpublished. They found that diluted bleach baths did help a bit more than regular bathing. According to the study, out of 100 people with eczema, 22 could expect to see their symptoms improve with regular bathing. Using a bleach bath, however, 32 out of the 100 would see an improvement in symptoms.
A wide variety of such treatments are available, including skin-applied corticosteroids, emollient moisturizers, other prescription topical medications, and some systemic drugs, according to Wolters Kluwers UpToDate, a decision-making tool for physicians.
Side Effects And Risks Of Bleach Baths
- People who are sensitive to bleach or have allergic asthma may find that bleach or chlorine fumes can irritate their skin or respiratory system.
- Bleach baths can be painful for people who have extremely dry skin
- Anyone thinking about incorporating a bleach bath into their own or their childs eczema skin care routine should speak to a doctor or healthcare professional first.
Information contained in this article was obtained from:
- Childrens Hospital at Westmead
- The Royal Childrens Hospital
- The Mayo Clinic & The National Eczema Association
It is not the policy of the Eczema Association of Australasia Inc to recommend or endorse any product or treatment.It is part of the role of the Association to provide information on a wide range of products and treatments to keep those involved with eczema as fully informed as possible as to all options available. For medical advice, consult your health professional.
Read Also: How To Control Eczema On Hands
How To Give A Bleach Bath
- Fill the bath* with tap water to the desired level using a standard-sized bucket. Count the number of buckets you use. Then mark your bath with tape so you dont need to use the buckets again.
- Add 12 mL of bleach for every 10 litres of water .
- Add 1-2 capfuls of bath oil per bath
- Add 100 grams of pool salt for each bucket
- Let the patient soak in the bath for 10 minutes.
- Wash the patients head and face with the bath water. You can immerse their head in the water as the concentration of bleach is very low and it will not cause any problems.
- Wipe away any crusting or weeping at the infected area while the patient is in the bath. Use a soft disposable towel and throw it away afterwards.
- Do not rinse your childs skin after the bath.
- Use old or white towels to avoid possible bleaching of coloured towels.
- Repeat the bleach baths as often as recommended by your health professional.
*Note: If you do not have access to a bath, use a large watering can to make up the solution pour over your skin after showering and do not rinse off.
Soak And Seal: The Seal
Careful, intentional bathing is only half of the “soak and seal” method. After your baby’s bath, moisturize their skin right away to “seal” the remaining moisture of the bath into their skin, and keep it from escaping.
- Remember the 3-minute rule: use a moisturizer on your baby’s skin within 3 minutes after the bath. If you wait too long to moisturize, the moisture of the bath will quickly escape from your baby’s skin.
- Recommended moisturizers include coconut oil , moisturizers with ceramides, and alcohol-free ointments.
- Avoid creams that contain alcohol, as the alcohol can sting and burn your baby’s skin. Look for ointments instead, as they usually contain no alcohol.
- If you plan to dress your baby’s skin or use wet wrap therapy, first let the moisturizer soak into your baby’s skin for a few minutes.
- Intentionally moisturize your baby’s skin more times per day than just after the bath. Spritz your baby’s skin with water at least twice a day, and apply moisturizer immediately afterwards. This helps baby retain the moisture from the bath more effectively.
Recommended Reading: Best Otc Ointment For Eczema
Add Bleach And Mix Well
Commercial bleach products can change so please see your doctor if you are not sure or have any concerns.
- for a 4.2% product, add 1 ml for every litre of water
- for a 3.1% product, add 1.3 mls for every litre of water
- for a 2.1% product, add 2 mls for every litre of water
Work out the amount of bleach to add to the bath.
Eczema And Bleach Baths
Eczema and Bleach Baths: Follow Dermatologists Instructions to Keep Children Safe
SCHAUMBURG, Ill. Eczema is a common skin condition in children, which begins with very itchy skin. Scratching can cause a rash that can become infected. If your childs eczema is frequently infected, your childs dermatologist may recommend bleach bath therapy.
Eczema: Bleach bath therapy
Bleach baths can be helpful for many children who have moderate to severe eczema, said board-certified dermatologist Lawrence F. Eichenfield, MD, FAAD, chief of pediatric and adolescent dermatology, University of California, San Diego. If your childs dermatologist recommends bleach baths, be sure to ask how much bleach to add to the water and how often a bleach bath should be given. Adding the wrong amount or type of bleach to the bath can irritate your childs already sensitive skin.
Its very important for parents to talk with their board-certified dermatologist before beginning bleach bath therapy with their child, said Dr. Eichenfield. Bleach bath therapy can be a key component, along with overall good skin care, to gain control of your childs eczema.
# # #
Recommended Reading: Why Is My Eczema Burning
Are Bleach Baths Safe For Babies With Eczema
It sounds an alarming prospect, putting tiny children in bleach baths in order to manage their eczema: how can it possibly be safe?!
But the amount of the bleach used in bleach baths for eczema is tiny its more like the levels of chlorine added to public swimming pools to kill off germs, than the strength of household bleach used to disinfect your kitchen sink!
Why are bleach baths used to manage eczema?
Bleach baths are a way of preventing infections on eczematous skin, which can be prone to bacterial infections. If your child is getting frequent infections which are making their eczema worse, then regular weak bleach baths can keep them under control.
How to make sure bleach baths are safe for babies with eczema:
Balmonds Bath & Body Oil for all-over soak and seal moisturising as soon as you get out of the bath. See our Top Tips For Bathing With Eczema for more information!
If you require medical advice we recommend you always contact your healthcare professional.
If you or someone you are caring for seems very unwell, is getting worse or you think there’s something seriously wrong, call for emergency services straight away. For general medical advice, please contact your healthcare professional, this article does not contain or replace medical advice.
Do not delay getting help if you’re worried. Trust your instincts.
Bleach Baths To Treat Eczema Are Popular But Do They Work
Evidence suggests that this home remedy may have some benefit as long as its done safely
On its face, the idea of using diluted bleach to soothe the itchy, dry, sensitive skin endured by people who have eczema might seem counterintuitive.
But there are plenty who swear by this home remedy, with posts about it garnering millions of views on TikTok. In videos of babies with eczema patches on their cheeks, parents describe how bleach baths helped calm the condition down. Another flare-up, another bleach bath, one declares. Another common theme: dermatologists on TikTok assuring viewers that yes, bleach baths are in fact a legitimate treatment.
The topic may have first gained momentum back in 2009, when a study in the journal Pediatrics suggested that bathing in a diluted bleach solution might help ease the symptoms of atopic dermatitis when combined with other strategies.
Since then, scientists have found additional evidence that diluted bleach baths might be helpful, at least for some people. It doesnt seem like its going to be a slam dunk, says Derek Chu, MD, an assistant professor in the departments of medicine and health research methods, evidence, and impact at McMaster University in Ontario, who has studied bleach baths as a treatment for eczema. But its an important tool to have.
You May Like: Eczema In 2 Month Old
How To Prepare A Bleach Bath For Eczema
The National Eczema Association advises having a bleach bath two to three times a week.
To prepare a bleach bath:
Tips When Using Bleach Bath For Eczema
- Dont soak more than 15 minutes
- Never pour bleach on your skin directly
- Use latex-free gloves when measuring and dispensing bleach
- Dont allow children to prepare their own baths
- If you are allergic to chlorine dont use bleach
- Dont swallow
- Properly measure water and bleach in the right ratio
- Discuss with a doctor if you are using bleach bath for the first time and follow directions and warnings.
- Dont use very cold or very hot water
You May Like: How To Deal With Itchy Eczema