Treating Eczema in Infants
- Posted on: Feb 15 2019
Eczema is a common, chronic skin condition in which a type of rash may develop on one or more parts of the body. Usually, we see eczema in older children and adults. However, it is estimated that up to 20 percent of infants also show signs of this skin condition. Because there is no way to cure eczema, parents whose child shows symptoms of a persistent or recurrent rash are encouraged to obtain a medical evaluation by a board-certified dermatologist. An accurate diagnosis is the first step in developing strategies that can minimize uncomfortable itching and irritation.
Tips for Treating Infants with Eczema
We don’t rush to prescription medications to manage skin conditions when alternatives may be available. For infants with eczema, home remedies may provide sufficient relief and prevention of flare-ups.
Looking at Cleansers
Eczema flare-ups may result from contact with certain chemicals found in household cleaners, laundry detergent, and even personal care products. Soaps and shampoos for infants are usually made for sensitive skin and may need to be used throughout childhood to preserve the skin’s protective barrier as much as possible. Laundry detergents and other home cleaners are often made with dyes and scents, and these can irritate the skin. Look for products with the term “free and clear” to use for your home and your child’s clothes.
If eczema causes noticeable redness and inflammation, a cool compress may be used to alleviate itching. Understandably, this might be difficult with some children. If an ice pack or cold compress can be applied for just 5 minutes, itching should improve significantly. This process can be repeated every twenty minutes as needed.
Focus on Moisture
One of the fundamentals of eczema is the lack of moisture in the skin. In the winter months, this can be particularly challenging because outdoor air becomes increasingly dry and the heated air indoors is not much better. An easy and efficient way to promote moisture for an infant is to place a humidifier in their room or in various rooms of the home. Moisture also needs to be applied and locked into the skin. Wintertime moisturizers for any person with eczema need to be thick. Creams and ointments are ideal for this time of year and, in some cases, may be layered for extra benefits. Products used on infants with eczema should be fragrance and dye free. Ingredients like argan oil or Lichochalcone (from licorice root) help soothe the skin.
We understand that, when your child is uncomfortable, your worry gauge can rise quickly. For help with rashes and skin irritation, call our Manhattan office at 212.391.8600.
Posted in: Eczema