Finding out that your child has eczema isn’t an easy thing to deal with. Depending on the severity of their condition, it could mean daily care to keep their skin as healthy as possible. Although it worries you and can be emotionally trying, you mostly just want to do as much as possible to help your child keep their skin condition under control. Sometimes, their doctor might prescribe something for them. But often eczema treatment involves lots of home remedies and over-the-counter medicines. If you’re at a loss about where you should start, take a look at these eczema treatments for you child.
Emollients are creams and ointments used for everyday application, to help stop skin from drying out. They’re applied directly to the skin to keep it moisturised and cover it with a protective film. As well as creams and ointments, they also come in the form of lotions, sprays, bath products and soap substitutes. It’s likely that your child will need an emollient as part of their everyday skincare routine. However, don’t just choose the first one you find. You should try several different types and brands to find one that’s suitable for your child’s skin type.
Corticosteroids are not intended for daily use. These creams are also for topical application, but you should only use them for short periods of time. Their main purpose is to help treat particularly bad flare-ups, when your child’s eczema becomes more irritated than normal. Though they often come in creams, you can also find them as water or alcohol-based solutions, gels or ointments. They come in different strengths, and your GP will prescribe them to you based on the severity of your symptoms. It’s important not to use one that’s too strong, as the steroids can have adverse effects. These effects include the skin thinning, changing colour or becoming vulnerable to infection.
When your child has eczema, it’s important to try to stop them scratching. It can be incredibly frustrating for both of you, but scratching can make eczema worse. There are several ways you can help your child stop scratching to avoid irritating their skin or risking infection. For young children, Scratchsleeves and similar products can help to limit the damage of any scratching. You can also use systems of reward and distraction techniques. These help older children resist the temptation to scratch
Treating eczema isn’t all about medication. Most cases of eczema have triggers, including certain foods, dust or pet dander. Avoiding triggers is one of the major parts of treating eczema. Working out what your child’s triggers are will help you immensely. Common triggers include food colourings, dust mites and certain laundry detergents. Food allergies include eggs, milk and nuts. Once you know what your child’s triggers are you can try to avoid them or limit their exposure to them. If you’re adjusting their diet, make sure that you give them any essential nutrients from other sources.