Eczema is a common skin condition seen in babies and young children. According to a recent survey, one in eight children suffers from eczema. The condition is not a cause of alarm and it disappears on its own as the child grows. This is one reason that eczema is not termed as such in young sufferers.
Symptoms of Eczema in Children
Babies with family history of eczema normally display signs of the condition once they turn two months. The usual symptoms seen in babies are inflammation, redness and dryness of skin.
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The skin behind the ears first shows signs of eczema. This is also true of the skin on knees, elbows and neck. The dryness leads to intense itching which can cause infection of the skin.
Causes of Eczema
The true cause of eczema is still not known though the doctors speculate that the condition is a result of some kind of allergy. The allergy could be because of food, pollen or dust.
If you suspect your child has developed the condition then waste no time in getting your child diagnosed. After a correct medical diagnosis your doctor would want to begin the treatment immediately.
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Home Treatment For Eczema in Children
Medical treatment of eczema is effective though there are a few things that you can do at home to ease your child’s discomfort.
1. Use an unscented emollient on the skin at least 4-5 times in a day. This cream can also be used on the nappy area. An emollient is a vitamin E rich cream that is very effective for dry and itchy skin. It keeps the area well-moisturized and prevents the skin from turning scaly.
2. Aqueous creams also work very well on eczema skin. They are not very expensive and are available at all drug stores. Many mothers prefer using the cream for washing the skin of babies instead of chemical-based harmful soaps.
3. Steroid based creams are also known to keep the eczema cream well moisturized. Regular use of the cream will prevent skin dryness in your baby. However, consult your doctor before applying the cream.
4. Use only soft fabric clothes for your baby. The skin of a baby is very soft and harmful chemicals and colors in the fabric can irritate his/her skin. Make your baby wear clothes spun from cotton as cotton is a natural fabric. The colors of the clothes should be preferably pastel.
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5. Wash all baby clothes and toys in mild detergent or in an anti-septic solution. Rinse the clothes in well in water so that no traces of the detergent on the clothes.
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6. Keep your child protected from heat always. Cover your child well when going out in the sun. Limit your day time outings with the child. Heat can worsen your baby’s eczema.
7. Avoiding using too much soap to clean your baby’s skin. Use cream based washes for bathing your child.
8. Avoid smoking in front of the baby. Do not use chemical sprays in the room where your baby is. Cigarette smoke and chemicals in the spray can turn your baby’s skin red and itchy.
9. Do not cut down on any foods without consulting your doctor.