Eczema is a common problem we hear about time and again at My Baba, The British Skin Foundation suggests that eczema can affect at least 10% of infants at some stage. It’s always horrible to watch your little ones struggle with the condition, especially when you’ve tried every cream and ointment going. Eczema is often hereditary, but more and more it’s thought that irritants or allergy inducing substances can also cause dryness and inflammation of the skin. We all know how delicate a baby’s skin is, so it’s really important to know how to manage or protect against common flare-ups.
This week is National Eczema Awareness Week, and with winter fast approaching, midwife Michelle Comrie, from Southampton Princess Anne Hospital is on hand with some simples steps that you can take to help soothe your baby’s eczema.
1. Whilst the gold standard for cleansing new born skin for the first four weeks of life is cotton wool and water, for a more convenient option, I would suggest using a chemical free baby wipe made with purified and softened water, such as WaterWipes. The water is purified by reverse osmosis and the only other ingredient is grapefruit seed extract (0.1%) which is renowned for being a natural skin conditioner. WaterWipes are endorsed by Allergy UK and approved by the National Eczema Association of America, and are therefore a great, convenient option for any family’s eczema-care plan.
2. For those in hard water areas, use a small amount of emollients at bathtime which helps to maintain the moisture barrier.
3. After bathing your baby, always moisturise the skin with a leave-on emollient, helping to avoid dryness or irritation to the skin.
4. Hotter temperatures can lead to sweating, which can exacerbate eczema. Try and keep your baby’s bedroom cool and avoid wool, polyester and nylon fabric.
5. Many babies might react to allergens found in common household soaps, laundry detergents and fabric softeners. Always look for hypoallergenic, fragrance-free products to minimise flare-ups and itching.
National Eczema Awareness week is 17 – 25 September; for more information, click here.