Childhood eczema is a pretty miserable experience. My own niece suffered from it when she was young. It´s hard enough as an adult to stop yourself scratching, so imagine how miserable it must be for a young child! Fortunately many do grow out of their childhood eczema, but in the meantime, here are some tips on how to help a child with eczema.
1. Frequent Moisturising
It´s important to keep the skin of an eczema sufferer well moisturised. Ointments or creams are better than lotions. Always use fragrance-free products, as perfume can irritate, and don´t forget to apply them after your child has a bath. Also, keep up the habit of moisturising, even when the eczema is not as bad.
2. Exclusion Diet
An exclusion diet can sometimes identify a dietary cause for childhood eczema. Cow´s milk and eggs are common problems. It´s important though, if a trigger is identified, to carry on treating the eczema with creams and other methods, as changing the diet alone is not enough.
When you´re wondering how to help a child with eczema, alternative therapies and natural remedies can be very helpful. Homeopathy is best prescribed by a trained practitioner, as they can select the most appropriate remedy for the child. Each person is different, which is why buying a remedy over the counter may not be effective.
4. Oatmeal Baths
Oatmeal is not just nutritious in your diet; it can also be very beneficial for calming irritated skin when used externally. Eczema is just one of the many skin conditions that can be helped with an oatmeal bath. See health.howstuffworks.com for how to make one.
5. Hemp Oil
A friend of mine had a child with eczema, and found hemp oil was beneficial in treating it. Hemp oil contains essential fatty acids. It can either be taken straight from the spoon, or used in food, but should not be heated, as this reduces its effectiveness.
6. Avoid Detergents
Laundry detergents and soap/bath products can be a big problem for sufferers of skin problems like eczema, as they take away the skin´s natural oils. So it´s best to use soap substitutes like emollient creams for your child´s bath. As for laundry, try non-bio products and avoid fabric conditioner.
7. Dietary Alternatives
Childhood eczema can sometimes be related to diet. A common factor in these cases is cow´s milk. My niece´s eczema was helped by putting her onto soy baby milk, instead of the regular version. Goat´s milk may also be better tolerated by children with eczema.
8. Calming Creams
Steroid creams should be a last resort, as they thin the skin. There are lots of natural alternatives that may help a child with eczema. In fact, some mothers of eczema sufferers have created their own creams – look at naturewithin.com.au or briaorganics.co.uk for a couple of examples.
It is hard for parents to know how to help a child with eczema. The poor little mites really do suffer. There is no magic cure, but there are lots of methods of alleviating the condition. So if your child has eczema, try different ways and see what helps. Did you suffer from childhood eczema yourself, and grow out of it, or does your own child have it?
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