Top 10 Tips for Optimally Managing Your Child’s Eczema
When your child has eczema, there are so many things that make you worry. From your child’s health and confidence to the financial costs of the medication, you surely have a list of concerns to deal with each day. While there’s a lot of reasons to be bothered by this skin disorder, there are many ways to optimally manage it. Here are ten things you can do to let your child have a good quality of life despite eczema.
Tip # 1: Consult a doctor
A dry, itchy, red skin is not enough to conclude that your child has eczema. Seek medical help to check your child’s symptoms. If your child is diagnosed with eczema, your doctor will prescribe the right treatment according to the severity of eczema and guide you in making an eczema management plan that will work for your child.
Tip # 2: Avoid products with harsh soap and fragrances
Be extra careful with the products that you let your child use. According to Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPG) for the Management of Atopic Eczema published by the Ministry of Health Malaysia, irritants such as conventional soaps, detergents, disinfectants and other chemical reagents may worsen flares in atopic eczema. Hence, you must choose gentle and fragrance-free products for your child. Consider using a non-soap cleanser like Ceradan® Moisturising Wash. This fragrance-free, paraben-free and SLS-free body wash nourishes the skin with ceramides.
Tip # 3: Manage the vicious Itch-Scratch cycle
Itching is one of the symptoms of Eczema. Your child will surely scratch his skin every time it feels itchy, and scratching may aggravate his skin condition. To stop your child from scratching, apply a topical treatment like Ceradan® Soothing Gel, containing menthol and polidocanol. The gel is specially formulated to provide optimal itch relief in just 5 minutes without the unpleasant smell and stinging sensation.
Tip # 4: Keep your child’s fingernails short and clean
While there’s a way to manage the itch-scratch cycle, there will be instances when scratching can’t really be avoided, especially at night. To protect him from the harm scratching might bring, make sure your child has short and clean nails. With short nails, the damage that scratching may cause can be minimised.
Tip # 5: Use emollient therapy to repair the defective skin barrier
One of the causes of eczema is the skin barrier defect. A flawed skin barrier makes your child’s skin dry and allows penetration of irritants and allergens. Thus, it is recommended to use a ceramide-dominant, cream-based emollient therapy to rebuild the defective skin barrier. You can try using Ceradan® Skin Barrier Repair Cream. It has high essential lipid content in 3:1:1 optimal lipid ratio for skin barrier repair.
Tip # 6: Always keep skin moisturized
Sufficient moisturiser must be liberally applied on the skin, at least twice a day or as frequently as required. Even after your little one survives the flare-ups, it is important to keep your child’s skin hydrated. Include in your child’s daily hygiene routine the application of a ceramide-dominant moisturiser like Ceradan® Hydra Moisturiser, a hydrating moisturiser enriched with ceramide and sodium hyaluronate, which help in skin barrier repair.
Tip # 7: Take a bath daily using a non-soap cleanser
The Dermatological Society of Singapore recommends daily bathing to remove serous crusts. Make sure to use warm water and a fragrance-free and hypoallergenic non-soap cleanser when bathing your child. High pH soaps may increase the level of proteases that will disrupt the skin barrier. Consider using a non-soap cleanser like Ceradan® Moisturising Wash. This fragrance-free, paraben-free and SLS-free body wash nourishes the skin with ceramides.
Tip # 8: Avoid nylon and wool clothing
Create a skin-friendly wardrobe for your child. Choose the fabrics very well. Avoid nylon and wool as these are some of the physical irritants that can worsen flares. Children with eczema will be more comfortable wearing soft, breathable cotton clothes.
Tip # 9: Check with the doctor if food allergies are aggravating your child’s eczema
Aside from clothing, you should also be careful with what your child eats. Certain foods such as milk, egg and peanuts may worsen eczema in children less than two years old. Thus, it is best to consult a doctor if you think your child’s skin condition is affected by what he eats.
Tip # 10: Look for other therapeutic options for severe eczema cases
If topical treatments and eczema management measures aren’t working for your child, consult your doctor about other therapeutic options. According to CPG for Management of Atopic Eczema, phototherapy may be recommended for patients who do not respond or develop side effects to conventional treatment. Likewise, adjunctive treatment like antihistamines and systemic antibiotics, as well as specific treatment like immunomodulating agents and biologics, may also be explored.
Despite the many inconveniences that eczema brings, the good news is that eczema can be optimally managed. The key to effective eczema management is to consistently adhere to a proper skin care regimen as mainstay maintenance therapy. Practice proper bathing/washing practices with gentle, non-soap cleansers and applications of emollients/moisturisers at least 2-3 times a day. Identification and management of trigger(s)/irritant(s) are also critical to ensure that your child stays free from eczema flares.
Guidelines for the Management of Atopic Dermatitis in Singapore
Clinical Practice Guidelines for Management of Atopic Eczema