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The incredibly sensitive nature of your newborn’s skin makes them far more susceptible to skin irritations and common skin conditions. One such condition is eczema. And while it can make your baby uncomfortable, it can be managed at home to keep it under control.

What Is Eczema?
Eczema is a type of rash that usually develops in babies within the first six months of life. The most common type of eczema babies develop is known as atopic dermatitis (AD), which is caused by the immune system springing into action too aggressively. As a result, red, itchy patches will develop on the skin, usually on the cheeks and scalp. After the age of six months, the eczema may develop on the limbs, particularly the elbows and knees, but it can spread to other areas well.

As they get older, the look of the eczema will change as well as the placement. This is partly due to them being on the move more and coming into contact with more surfaces that can irritate their skin. The patches may become thicker with visible lines, scales or creases. If an infection occurs, small, pus-filled bumps may also appear on the surface.

How to Treat Eczema
The most important thing to remember about baby eczema is that it is manageable. Here are some tips to help you better manage your baby’s eczema:

  • Make sure their bath water is warm but not too hot, which dries out the skin.
  • Limit bath time to 10 minutes to prevent drying out the skin.
  • Use mild baby soaps and shampoos that are as natural as possible.
  • Apply a moisturizer daily, right after bathing, to the entire body. Look for one that is free of fragrance and dyes with plenty of oil.
  • Use a more concentrated ointment on any inflamed patches. Stronger versions should be used according to your child’s physician’s advice and supervision.
  • Use a humidifier in their bedroom to keep moisture in the air.
  • Avoid rough, itchy fabrics when choosing clothing. Bamboo fabric is an ideal choice.
  • Keep their nails trimmed short to prevent scratching. Use baby mittens if needed. Or choose clothing with integral scratch mittens.
  • Choose bedding that is soft, like their clothing.
  • Wash your baby’s clothing and bedding in a gentle, non-irritating detergent.
  • Avoid rapid changes in temperature when it comes to their environment.

What Else Can I Do?
Paying attention to what contributes to your baby’s flare-ups of eczema can help you better manage it. Common triggers can include exposure to high temperatures, abrasive fabrics like wool, chemicals in household cleaning products and sweating as well as airborne allergens like dust, pollen and dander. Seek the help of your baby’s physician for advice on how best to keep your baby’s symptoms at bay so they have fun playing and learning. Your physician can provide further treatment options if home remedies aren’t proving effective enough.

No mommy likes to see her baby itchy, red and uncomfortable. Just know eczema is condition many children outgrow by age three. In the meantime, follow these suggestions and you’ll be helping them to stay happy and well.

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