According to the National Eczema Association, about 9.6 million children in the United States under the age of 18 have some form of eczema. While it is very common, researchers still cannot pinpoint an exact cause of the condition. If your child suffers from any of the different types of eczema, you are probably wondering what you can do to help ease their discomfort and decrease their symptoms.
In this article, we will share some practical tips that parents can use to help manage their child’s eczema. If you suspect your child has eczema, the first step is to schedule an appointment with your dermatologist. Your dermatologist will evaluate your child’s skin to give you an accurate diagnosis. From there, he or she can recommend a treatment plan based on the type of eczema your child is experiencing and the severity of the condition.
Do you live in the Atlanta area and have a child that is dealing with dry, red or itchy skin? Contact Buckhead Dermatology today to schedule an appointment with board-certified dermatologist Dr. Straughn. Dr. Straughn has over 25 years of experience treating eczema and other persistent skin conditions for patients of all ages and skin tones. Contact our office today at 404-816-4000 to make an appointment.
What is eczema?
Eczema is a skin condition that results in dry, itchy, red or inflamed skin. It is extremely common, with more than 31 million Americans suffering from some form of the condition. There are several different types of eczema including:
- Atopic dermatitis
- Contact dermatitis
- Dyshidrotic eczema
- Nummular eczema
- Seborrheic dermatitis
- Stasis dermatitis
The most common symptom associated with eczema is itchy skin. Other symptoms include rough or scaly patches, red and inflamed skin, oozing or crusting skin, swollen skin or infected skin. The appearance of the symptoms depends on the person. While some people may experience all of these symptoms, others may have only mild itching.
What are the causes of eczema?
The exact cause is not currently known; however, it is accepted that genetics and environment can play a role in the development of eczema. The condition is commonly seen hand-in-hand with food or seasonal allergies and asthma. Children often develop eczema because their skin does not contain a substance known as filaggrin, a protein that aids in creating a strong skin barrier. Without adequate amounts of this protein, the skin is more susceptible to drying out and bacterial infections.
Is eczema contagious?
No, eczema is not contagious and cannot be passed from one person to another through contact or any other means.
Is there a cure for eczema?
While there is no cure for eczema, there are a number of treatments that can be very effective. Treatments can include over-the-counter products or prescription medications depending on severity. With the help of your dermatologist, you may be able to pinpoint the individual triggers that cause an eczema flare-up. Treatment would then include avoiding the triggers and implementing a consistent skin care regimen.
Tips for Easing Eczema Symptoms in Children
As a parent, it is difficult seeing your child in distress. In addition to following the advice of your dermatologist and other healthcare providers, follow these tips to help ease the symptoms and frequency of eczema flare-ups.
- Bathe in warm water for a maximum of 10 minutes at a time. Avoid hot water and long baths or showers.
- Use gentle cleansers that are formulated for sensitive skin.
- Avoid rubbing skin. Instead, gently pat the skin dry after bathing.
- Moisturize twice a day using a gentle cream or ointment.
- Keep your child’s fingernails short and clean to avoid infections from itching the skin.
- Avoid extremely dry air or extremely humid conditions.
- Purchase a laundry detergent meant for people with sensitive skin.
- Choose clothing without tags, zippers or buttons that might rub against the skin and cause irritation.
- Wash clothing in a gentle detergent before your child wears it.
- Choose fragrance-free products whenever possible.
Eczema Treatment Atlanta and College Park
If you or your child is suffering from dry, itchy or red skin, contact Buckhead Dermatology to schedule an appointment with Dr. Straughn today. As one of the leading dermatologists in the country, Dr. Straughn can help you treat and reduce your child’s eczema symptoms and help them achieve a better quality of life.