Do you often find your child constantly scratching their skin? Is your little one having dry, bumpy, and irritated skin? Eczema might be the culprit.
Eczema is a frustrating skin condition that can affect at least one in 10 children in the United States. It is a chronic skin problem that occurs when the skin barrier does not function as it should because of the lack of a special protein called filaggrin.
If you’re unsure if your child’s symptoms are because of eczema, this article is for you. Let’s discuss the common symptoms of eczema in children and how you, as a parent, can manage your child’s eczema.
Eczema Symptoms in Children
The symptoms of eczema can be different for each child and can be all over the body or in just a few spots. Sometimes, the eczema rash gets worse (a period called eczema exacerbation or flares), while other times, it gets better (a period called eczema remission).
In infants younger than one year old, eczema rash usually appears on their forehead, scalp, or cheeks. It may often spread to your infants’ knees, elbows, and trunk, excluding the diaper area. On the other hand, in older kids and teens, eczema symptoms usually appear in the bends of the elbows, on the neck, behind the knees, or in the inner ankles and wrists. The skin of older kids and teens is often scalier and drier compared to their skin when eczema first began. Their skin can also be darker, thicker, or scarred from all the scratching.
The main sign of eczema is an itching rash that becomes red or raw and weepy with flare-ups. It is pertinent to mention that if the rash does not itch, it is not eczema. Furthermore, the rash does not look the same for every child. For example, in babies with light skin, the rash appears as a patch of red skin. On the other hand, the rash might look brownish-purplish or greyish in babies with dark skin, making it harder to recognize eczema.
Moreover, the eczema patches in children are almost always itchy, dry, and rough.
Some Ways to Manage Eczema Symptoms
If you think your child has an eczema rash, it is in your best interest to see a pediatric dermatologist immediately. A pediatric dermatologist can diagnose eczema and offer a personalized treatment plan to treat and prevent its flare-ups.
Meanwhile, you can try the following home treatments for your child’s eczema symptoms.
- Give your child a short, lukewarm bath to soothe itching. You can also add oatmeal socking products to your baby’s tub to ease eczema symptoms.
- Keep your child’s skin moisturized, particularly with ceramides. You can also use a good fragrance-free moisturizer several times a day to help your child’s skin retain natural moisture.
- Always use mild, unscented soaps. Perfumed and antibacterial soaps can be rough on the sensitive skin of your child so avoid them.
- Choose comfortable and loose clothes for your child that are made of cotton.
- Always pat dry your child’s skin. Do not rub it.
- Apply over-the-counter products, such as hydrocortisone creams and ointments, to ease inflammation and soothe itching.
Eczema Treatment in Phoenix, AZ
At Happy Skin Pediatric Dermatology, our highly trained and skilled pediatric dermatologist, Dr. Samantha Casselman, has over eight years of experience in pediatric dermatology. Our pediatric dermatologist thoroughly assesses a child’s skin conditions, finds out the underlying cause of their problems, and develops a tailor-made treatment plan to address their unique skin needs.