About 10-15% of the babies develop eczema and when this happen, it can be frustrating for mothers and care givers.
Why do babies and children get eczema?
The exact cause is unknown. It could likely be due to a combination of dry skin, irritable skin with malfunction of body immune system, stress. Other causes are:
- Hormonal imbalance (e.g Hypothyroidism) – a drop in the thyroid level cause blood circulation to drop and hence, not delivering enough oxygen and nutrients to the skin.
- Unhealthy gut – allergies to food trigger reaction or intestinal tract is not functioning.
- Infection – immune system over react to the environmental stimulus.
5 ways to manage baby and children eczema
1) Chlorophyll water bath
Patting dry instead of rubbing with towel is better to prevent irritating the sore skin. It is commonly advised by dermatologist to apply moisturizer on the baby when the skin is still moist to allow the moisturizer to penetrate into the skin.
This is misplaced advice. When the skin is moist and the pore is open, it is allowing chlorine in the water to also penetrate alongside the moisturizer. Chlorine present in the water is an irritant to the skin. So, by doing this, will increase the itchiness.
2) Shampoo and soap
Most commercial shampoo and soap contain ingredients that are irritating to baby skin. Look out for ingredients that are mild, gentle and non-irritants. Examples are vegetable-based coconut oil, palm oil, acetyl-glucosamine and cocoaminobetaine.
Babies diet is quite simple. Breast milk is the best for babies. Cow’s milk contains casein, which is a milk protein that could be an allergen. When babies and children are on solid food, you should avoid processed food, gluten and sugar as they are allergens and cause inflammation in the body.
Eczema skin is usually dry and scaly and a good, natural moisturizer is necessary to keep the skin moist and soft. Look out for ingredients in such as aloe vera, cocoa butter, sweet almond oil and contains no irritants such as fragrance, colorings and harmful preservatives. Aloe vera is anti-inflammatory. Cocoa-butter is rich in Vitamin E, which help to soften the skin. Sweet almond oil contains ursolic acid and oleic acid, which are anti-inflammatory.
Besides managing the external skin condition, good nutrition is important in helping the baby fight the inflammation raging in the body.
Good quality Omega-3 supplementation is necessary. While you can get Omega-3 naturally from oily fish such as salmon, most commercial fish are contaminated with heavy metal, hormone and antibiotics.
Steroid creams are normally prescribe to apply on the skin to alleviate the condition. Please do not that as you risk the child developing addiction to the steroid cream and suffer on withdrawal from the addiction. See my next post to find out more.
Try out these 5 ways to manage your babies and children to alleviate their discomfort. This period will pass as most of them grow out of their eczema conditions.
Do you have any other ways to manage baby and children eczema? If you do, share with me in the comment box below.
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