✨How common is eczema?✨
Eczema (also known as atopic dermatitis) is most common in babies, in fact, it affects 1 in 5 children under the age of 2 years.
It can also occur in older children and adults but usually improves with age.
Although eczema can be effectively treated and managed, no cures are currently available.
Why people develop eczema, is still not well understood but it is common for people with eczema to develop allergies.
The skin in people who have eczema is different, the skin barrier does not work as well at retaining water and moisture 💦 is easily lost! And drinking more water, Unfortunately is not necessarily going to help.
✨ Symptoms ✨
It can appear like a red itchy rash, where the skin can ooze & flake. over time the skin can become rough & hard. When eczema gets worse it is termed an eczema flare.
Infantile eczema starts before 6 months of age and presents with the symptoms described above. It will usually improve significantly by age 2-5 years
Childhood eczema can sometimes follow on from this or may start between age 2-4 symptoms usually arise in the creases of the elbows & knees, ankles, face, ears & neck
the good news is that this form of eczema usually gets better with age.
✨ Eczema & other allergic disorders ✨
Many children with eczema will also have food allergies, dust mite allergies, asthma or hay fever.
Some studies have reported that up to 3 in 10 infants with eczema and a family history of allergy will develop food allergy and up to 4 in 10 develop asthma and/or hay fever.
✨ Eczema & food allergy ✨
Many babies with moderate or severe eczema will have food allergies. This does not mean that if you remove that food, the eczema will be cured.
In severe eczema, removal of some foods under medical supervision, can result in an improvement in the skin but I cannot stress enough that this must only be done under an immunologist as cutting foods out of your child’s diet has many consequences if not done right.
✨ What can trigger eczema? ✨
When the skin barrier is damaged, water evaporates so the skin becomes more susceptible to allergens and irritants, and this in turn can cause the skin to release the ‘itch’ chemical.
The more the child itches, the more chemical is released so the ‘scratch/itch’ cycle can be awful.
some common triggers are
Swimming in chlorine
Playing in sand
Sitting on carpets or grass
Sudden temperature change
Stress (although eczema is not a psychological condition)
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