Fifteen million. That’s how many people are thought to be living with eczema in the UK, and Littlest B is one of them.
The diagnosis has come as quite a shock as we have no family history of eczema, and given there’s no family history we have absolutely no experience in how best to deal with it.
Apparently the chances are she’ll grow out of it, but in the meantime she’s got angry red patches of skin that are making our lives a misery, especially at night when the itching keeps her – and us – awake.
We’ve changed our washing powder from biological to non-bio because apparently the enzymes in biological washing detergent can be an irritant, and we’ve been prescribed creams and bath additives to help soothe her skin. But all they’re really doing is managing the problem, not improving it.
So what can we do to try and help make it better? I asked some mums and dads of children with eczema for their tried and tested tips on dealing with the condition and hero products they can’t live without, and this is what they said.
10 simple ways to help your baby with eczema
1. Oats. “Cut the foot off an old pair of tights and fill with oats,” says Sarah at Whimsical Mumblings. “Tie up the foot, then tie this to your tap and run a bath, while letting the water run through the tights. Once your little one is in the bath, take the tights off the tap and gently wipe it onto any sore bits. Oats are AMAZING for eczema!”
2. Amber. “My son wore an Amber anklet under a sock and this was the difference in two weeks,” says Becci at To Aufinity And Beyond.
3. Salt. “Salt works wonders, which is why swimming in the sea helps most older eczema sufferers,” says Emma at The Money Whisperer. “We have a salt cave near us – there are a few around the country. A session lasts an hour – strip baby down to nappy and just play or watch TV. It’s amazing to feel the skin afterwards.”
4. Keep their nails short. “Keep nails short, and do not put scratch mitts on as this just causes more frustration and increases the need to itch,” says Melanie at Life At Number Eleven.
5. Use a vaporiser. “In winter when it’s cold and the heating is on in the house and it gets quite dry, we use a vaporiser to create more humidity, which helps with their skin,” says Sara at Mind Your Mamma.
6. Cover their skin at night. “I found it really important to make sure baby’s skin is covered at night so that they can’t scratch themselves in the night and cause themselves real damage,” says Kate at Ever After With Kids.
7. Don’t bath them every day. “We stopped giving my son a daily bath and reduced it to twice a week which really seemed to help,” says Clare at My Tunbridge Wells.
8. Avoid anything with too many ingredients. “Aveeno is a great brand to use,” says Kelly-Anne at Mimi Rose And Me. “For cream we use Sudocrem Care & Protect, it’s thinner almost like lotion. It clears both our eczema!”
9. Try Childs Farm products. “It’s amazing and has completely cleared my son’s eczema,” says Katie at Mummy’s Diary.
10. Consider cutting out dairy. “Lots of skin conditions can be due to lactose in milk, so reduce or cut out dairy,” says Victoria at Healthy Vix.
Do you or one of your children suffer with eczema? Do you have any advice or tips to add to this list? If so I’d love to hear from you!