Eczema is a popularly persistent inflammatory disease of the skin that affects about 10 percent of children. If a baby shows red, scaly and itchy patches all over his body, it’s quite certain that he’s got eczema. This disease can show up anywhere but is usually found on the cheeks, the head, backs of the knees, the elbows and the neck.
Although we do not certainly know causes of the disease, we can still make it under control by a regimen mentioned as below.
- Take more showers
Many people normally believe that bathing frequently makes eczema worse. In fact, it’s useful to help remove an overgrowth of staphylococcal bacteria, a potential trigger to eczema flares, according to Dr. Megha M. Tollefson, an assistant professor of dermatology and pediatrics at the Mayo Clinic Children’s Center in Rochester.
There’s no recommendation for frequency of giving baths, but how often to give baths for babies may not the same as for adults. For babies, always remember to use warm water, to wash soiled areas only and not to bathe your baby longer than 15 minutes. Besides, products labeled “cleansers” and those that are fragrance-, paraben- and phthalate-free are welcome for babies’ skin. Be aware of ingredients within products labeled “natural” as they can irritate the skin.
It’s advised to use an ointment or a thick cream at least twice a day to lock the skin’s moisture instead of rubbing the baby’s dry skin to leave some moisture behind.
- Consider bleach baths
It sounds like unsafe at all to put your baby near bleach, but for babies with moderate to severe eczema, a small amount of highly-diluted bleach within a bath can help keep the bacteria under control without using antibiotics. However, this treatment can be used only when your baby can sit up himself, and under the guidance of your pediatrician.
- Supplement with probiotics
According to a review and meta-analysis in the journal Allergy, adding probiotics in daily diets during pregnancy and early infancy can protect the baby against eczema. In addition, a combination of probiotics and fish oil can eradicate eczema in about 50% of babies, said Dr. Erika Krumbeck, of Montana Whole Health in Missoula. Consult with a doctor for the best brands and appropriate dosage.
- Eliminate dairy
Bad gut bacteria inherited from mom might be a cause of some babies’ eczema or tummy troubles, said Krumbeck. Thus, it might be useful to eliminating dairy, the often most common culprit of eczema if the mom has digestive problems herself.
If the baby is formula fed, switching to a hypoallergenic formula or considering donor breast milk might help the situation.
- Ask the pediatrician
If you go to a pediatrician, he/she may prescribe a topical steroid medication, oral medications, antibiotics, or phototherapy, it depends on the severity of your baby’s eczema. Another treatment, called wet wrap therapy, which covers baby in wet dressings (or pajamas) and topical steroids can also be helpful, said Tollefson.