Where On The Body Can Eczema Appear
Eczema can appear in any area where your child has come into contact with one of their triggers.
For example, if they have a grass allergy and rolled around in the backyard, they might have rashes anywhere there was exposed skin.
A child could get eczema around the outside of their mouth after eating acidic foods, like pineapple, or in the folds of their skin if they were sweating.
If your child had eczema as a baby, you might think youre a pro at identifying it. However, the symptoms of eczema in toddlers are actually different from the symptoms in babies. As kids get older, the location of their rashes can change.
Babies are prone to rashes on their faces and heads remember cradle cap? Thats a kind of eczema! Toddlers and older kids are more likely to get eczema in the following areas:
- creases of their elbows
When To Contact A Doctor About Baby Eczema
If this is the first time baby is experiencing red or irritated skin, its best to contact your doctor to confirm whether its baby eczema or another condition. Once you get a diagnosis, you can start taking the appropriate steps and trying some baby eczema treatments.
But if the skin irritation is accompanied by a fever, or the bumps and patches start to ooze, scab or blister, it may be a sign of infection, and youll want to consult your childs doctor right away.
Does Your Child Need To See A Doctor About Eczema
Yes. Take your child to see your GP if your child:
- might have eczema for the first time
- is very itchy and uncomfortable
- has eczema thats weeping or bleeding
- has eczema that hasnt improved much after a few days, even though youve been treating it as usual
- is having trouble sleeping because the rash is so itchy
- has painful or eczema that has developed pus
- has eczema and is generally unwell for example, has a fever and/or is sweating, feeding poorly or tired.
You should also take your child to the GP if youre not sure whether the rash is eczema.
If your childs eczema doesnt improve with a combination of medical treatment and management at home, your GP might refer your child to a dermatologist. If the GP thinks your childs eczema might be from allergies, they might also refer you to an allergy and immunology specialist.
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What Causes Eczema In Babies
The first step in preventing eczema is to learn what causes it, and unfortunately, there are many causes.
One of the biggest factors in whether or not a child develops eczema is the childs own health history, specifically his or her genes. If baby has a relative diagnosed with eczema, he/she is more at-risk for developing eczema as well.
In addition to babys unique genetic makeup, environmental triggers affect future flare-ups. The most common triggers include:
Will My Baby Outgrow Eczema
Many babies who develop eczema in their first year eventually outgrow eczema by the time they start elementary school. Other children outgrow it by their early teens. Still others dont completely outgrow eczema by these ages, but notice that their eczema is less severe as they get older.
But eczema, especially chronic eczema, can also be lifelong. Some babies never outgrow eczema, and have the condition for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, theres no cure for eczema, and no way to tell whether your little one will outgrow it.
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What Are The Top Lotions For Baby Eczema
Most parents understand that the top treatment for baby eczema and balls moisturizing lotion that can create.
There are a number of eczema creams that are exceptional at treating baby eczema. These include:
- CeraVe Baby Moisturizing Cream is a great overall lotion for eczema on all parts of the body.
- Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy Moisturizing Cream is an exceptional cream that does a great job of reducing itching and scratching in babies. This could help to keep those wounds from opening up.
- Eucerun Baby Eczema Relief Body Cream is great for babies that have widespread eczema on multiple parts of the body. This cream will do a great job of common irritation and relaxing the skin overall.
- Weleda Sensitive Care Face Cream is commonly recommended for eczema that shows up on the face of babies. Because facial skin is more sensitive, these areas sometimes require a more specialized cream.
With these products in mind, its important to know that these are all sold over the counter. Any parent who finds they are applying these creams multiple times a day without making a dent in eczema needs to visit their pediatrician for help.
In some cases, baby eczema could require a steroid cream. It is important to follow your pediatricians instructions when using steroid creams because these creams can lead to side effects.
On the other hand, if the eczema is so bad that babies are bleeding regularly and having trouble sleeping, then this cream might be warranted.
Best Treatment For Baby Eczema
There is no one right treatment for eczema in children. What works for another child may not work for yours. You may have to go through several treatments or combinations of treatments in partnership with your doctor before you find one that helps manage your childs symptoms. Be persistent and patient as treating eczema can take several weeks or longer before you see real progress.
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Managing Eczema In Winter And Year Round: A Parents Guide
Cold, dry outdoor air and indoor heating can rob skin of its natural moisture in the winter. Red, crusty, dry patches can be common on a baby’s skin, particularly in winter, and cause concern for parents. Such symptoms can be treated, however, and many babies and children do outgrow the dry, itchy skin of atopic dermatitis, also known as eczema.
We spoke with pediatric dermatologist Katherine Puttgen to learn more.
Eczema And Food Allergies
Babies with eczema are at a higher risk than the general population for developing food allergies. In fact, up to 67 percent of infants with severe eczema and 25 percent of infants with mild eczema will develop a food allergy, says Jonathan Spergel M.D., board certified allergist.
- If baby has mild to moderate eczema, early and sustained exposure to allergenic foods, like peanuts, cows milk, and eggs, has been shown to decrease this risk by up to 80 percent. When baby starts solids around 6 months, I recommend trying Ready, Set, Food!, a program that gives parents the option to add the most common allergenic foods to breastmilk, formula, or purees in a safe and effective way
- If baby has severe eczema: Consult your pediatrician before starting early allergen introduction. They may recommend allergy testing prior to introducing any allergens.
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Other Types Of Eczema
Eczema is the name for a group of skin conditions that cause dry, irritated skin.
Other types of eczema include:
- discoid eczema a type of eczema that occurs in circular or oval patches on the skin
- contact dermatitis a type of eczema that occurs when the body comes into contact with a particular substance
- varicose eczema a type of eczema that most often affects the lower legs and is caused by problems with the flow of blood through the leg veins
- seborrhoeic eczema a type of eczema where red, scaly patches develop on the sides of the nose, eyebrows, ears and scalp
- dyshidrotic eczema a type of eczema that causes tiny blisters to erupt across the palms of the hands
Page last reviewed: 05 December 2019 Next review due: 05 December 2022
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Dont Let Baby Scratch
One thing to know about eczema is that it is very itchy. Your little one will likely want to scratch it, and I think we all know what damage those baby nails can do. If the eczema is scratched too much it can open up, and if dirt and stuff gets in than it could become infected. The best thing to do is to cover the eczema up with clothes so you little one cant scratch.
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Progression Of Eczema In Infants And Children
Baby eczema is most prominent on the cheeks, forehead, and scalp of an infant within the first few months of life, and often tends to make the skin look more red and weepy than at other ages.
The eczema can appear on other parts of the body as well, including the diaper area.
When the infant begins to crawl, usually between 6 and 12 months, eczema will typically affect the elbows and knees, which rub on the ground. The eczema rash can become infected, resulting in a yellowish crust or tiny bumps of pus.
When the child is around age 2, eczema may begin to appear on the inside of the elbows and behind the knees, as well as on the wrists, ankles, and hands. It may also appear around the mouth and eyelids.
This eczema tends to be drier, scalier, and thicker .
Top Rated Products For Baby Eczema Include:
Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy
Eucerin Baby Eczema Relief Body Cream
Weleda Sensitive Care Face Cream
Mustela Stelatopia Emollient Cream
Babyganics Eczema Care Skin Protectant Cream
Vanicream Moisturizing Skin Cream
Triple Cream Eczema Care & Severe Dry Skin
Baby Dove Sensitive Moisture Lotion
MG217 Eczema Baby Therapeutic Moisturizing Cream & Skin Protectant
Tubby Todd All Over Ointment
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Healthy Diet And Supplements To Beat Eczema
Nutritional deficiencies can weaken your babys immune system. Another problem is if your child doesnt get enough essential fatty acids and vitamins the health of their skin is affected too especially in terms of being dry and healing very slowly. Adequate levels of zinc can minimize allergies. A wide variety of vegetables should be given for the vitamins and minerals. Vegetables are also more alkaline which helps your body to fight off inflammation.
Minimize grains and lower meat and dairy intake as these are foods that have an acidic effect on the body. The quality of the food is important. Go for organic produce, grass-fed meat, and raw dairy. Read more about the disease-fighting benefits of an alkaline diet here. Sugar and processed foods are should be either completely cut out or limited. They contain unhealthy fats and also have an acidic effect on the body.
Rather have them eat healthier fats like omega 3 which fights inflammation and cholesterol which is important for healthy cells. These fats are found in avocados, coconut oil, fatty fish like salmon and sardines, and olive oil. Fruit should also be kept to a minimum because of the fructose content. No more than one serving a day. Read more about which fruits are the healthiest here.
Avoid Trigger Foods The Cause Eczema
Its important to keep a food diary to try to identify any foods that aggravate your eczema symptoms and then eliminate them from your diet. You may also want to try the raw food diet as it was used to successfully get rid of eczema.
According to Dr. Tim Kenny on Patient.info, some of the most common trigger foods that make your eczema worse are cows milk, eggs, soy, wheat, peanuts, cheese, fish, chocolate, artificial food colors and tomatoes.
It might seem a long process if you go through every food, but the fact is that most people eat certain foods all the time. Start with those foods that you eat on a regular basis and by a process of elimination, try to find out which food triggers your itchy breakouts.
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What Causes Atopic Dermatitis In A Child
The exact cause of atopic dermatitis is not known. But some things are linked to it. They include:
Genes. This skin problem can be passed on from parents to a child.
Immune system. An immune system that isnt fully developed may affect how much protection the skin can give.
External factors. These include being in winter weather, using hot water for bathing, using soap, and being in dry, hot temperatures.
Detergent And Household Cleaners
There are often harsh chemicals in these products. If you’ve cleaned without using gloves you will have felt how drying they can be. One of the worst things is laundry detergent. Unlike cleaning products which can be rinsed away, for the most part, the clothing your child wears still carries the chemicals from the detergent.
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The Atopic March Food Allergies And Eczema
Eczema and food allergies are very closely related. They are both considered allergic conditions, and they are both part of a progression known as the atopic march.
What is the atopic march? According to the atopic march, children with one allergic condition are at increased risk for others, and allergic conditions often appear in a certain order. In other words, one condition usually marches in front of the other, in a fairly predictable lineup.
Eczema comes before food allergies in the atopic march. This means babies usually develop eczema before food allergies, and babies with eczema are at the highest risk for food allergies.
But even though food allergies and eczema are closely related, and even though some symptoms may look similar, eczema rash is not the same as a food allergy reaction.
Food allergy rashes appear as raised bumps, which look different from the red, scaly rash of eczema. Learn more about how to tell the difference between a food allergy reaction and an eczema flare-up.
How Long Does Baby Eczema Last
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, while some babies may continue to experience eczema through adulthood, many will outgrow it around age 4.
Baby eczema may also evolve as your little one gets older. According to the National Eczema Association, it might appear on babys face in early infanthood but pop up in key areas like the knees, elbows and hands as they get older. As they approach big-kid territory, eczema often hides in knee folds or elbow creases and other sweat-prone spots.
Whether eczema is an acute or perpetual problem for your child, its reassuring to know that there are many baby eczema treatments and preventive measures you can take to reduce the symptoms and alleviate the itch.
No one likes to see their baby in discomfortand the appearance of any rash can be disconcerting. But if you recognize eczema, you can rest assured that its common and treatable.
About the experts:
Anna Bender, MD, is a pediatric dermatologist at Weill Cornell Medicine and New York-Presbyterian in New York City. She received her medical degree at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons.
Latanya Benjamin, MD, FAAD, FAAP, is a Florida-based pediatric dermatologist and dermatologic surgeon and Society for Pediatric Dermatology board member. She earned her medical degree at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Plus, more from The Bump:
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Get Rid Of Eczema On Face With Bleach
You can get rid of extreme cases of eczema after you decide to apply bleach. You should be careful when applying the solution because too much can irritate your skin. Just place a half a cub of the bleach in a 40 gallon container of water. After you have made the solution, soak the affected area of the skin for about 20 minutes. You can repeat the process on a daily basis for 2 weeks and you will see great improvements.
Wrap Up In Cold Weather
Cold, harsh winter winds can dry out skin and cause eczema flares.
Keep the skin covered when temperatures are low. Also, consider covering the face with a scarf if eczema occurs on the face.
Many home remedies are suitable for babies and children, but always speak to a doctor before using them on kids of any age.
The following home remedies may help:
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How Can You Prevent Baby Eczema
If your baby has contact dermatitis, you can try your best to prevent a flare-up by identifying and avoiding common triggers, which might include:
- Moisture . Dress your baby in lightweight cotton clothing. Gently pat drool away when you see it.
- Scratchy fabrics. In addition to clothes and rugs, even your babys stuffed animals can trigger eczema.
- Allergens. Think pet dander, pollen or dust.
- Harsh detergents and soaps. Consider using a sensitive detergent when washing babys clothes and crib sheets.
What Should I Look For When Selecting Skin Care Products
Choose soaps and moisturizers made for sensitive skin. Although there is no single group of products that are right for every child, generally, products with fewer ingredients are best. Expensive products are not always better. If you need help finding products for your child, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
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Symptoms Of Atopic Eczema
Atopic eczema causes the skin to become itchy, dry, cracked and sore.
Some people only have small patches of dry skin, but others may experience widespread inflamed skin all over the body.
Inflamed skin can become red on lighter skin, and darker brown, purple or grey on darker skin. This can also be more difficult to see on darker skin.
Although atopic eczema can affect any part of the body, it most often affects the hands, insides of the elbows, backs of the knees and the face and scalp in children.
People with atopic eczema usually have periods when symptoms are less noticeable, as well as periods when symptoms become more severe .