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Our skin is the largest, most versatile organ in the body. We need to ensure what we put on it keeps our skin in good condition, both for ourselves and our babies. It is our body’s natural protective barrier from a variety of germs and toxins. But how can we keep it in tip-top condition?
There are certain skin conditions that are more common than others, and in this blog, I would like to give you a brief overview on one of the most common conditions, eczema, and some treatments which may help keep your children’s skin in good condition.
One of the most common skin conditions, which has increased significantly over recent years is Atopic Eczema (also known as Atopic Dermatitis or AD). The exact cause of AD is unknown, it happens when the immune system goes into overdrive and often occurs in people who also get allergies, in fact, “Atopic” means sensitive to allergens. It can run in families and often develops alongside other conditions like asthma and hay fever.
The symptoms often are triggered by certain things i.e. soaps, detergents, stress and even the weather! Some food allergies can also cause a problem, especially in young children.
Who is Affected?
It mainly affects children, but can also affect adults. Eczema is a condition that causes the skin to become itchy, red, dry and cracked.
About one in five children in the UK currently have Atopic Eczema and in 8 out of 10 of the cases, the eczema occurs before a child reaches the age of five. Whilst it is a long-term condition, it does tend to improve over time especially in children.
This is typically known as Infant Eczema
There isn’t a cure for Atopic Eczema at the moment, but treatment can help relieve symptoms and many cases improve over time.
Eczema can be extremely distressing for babies and their parents alike. I remember Dominic having his first serious “attack” at a very young age and feeling desperate, not knowing how to ease the constant scratching. It can also disrupt their sleep, which makes us tired too! Constant scratching can lead to infections so it is key that you reduce the itchiness, anti-scratch mittens may help, and keeping their nails short and clean will minimise damage to their skin. Keeping their skin covered with light, natural clothing will keep them cooler and stop direct contact with the skin.
Doctors tend to suggest emollient (moisturising treatment which softens or soothes the skin)lotions and ointments, sometimes combined with a course of low-strength steroid creams – both of these treatments are considered safe if used correctly. However, long term it is important to try and pinpoint your child’s triggers so you can avoid them, and the use of steroid creams.
Choosing the Right Skin Care
Your skin care should nourish, protect and repair your skin. Simple, organic and natural ingredients are always the best idea for young, delicate skin. A recent survey by the Herb Research Foundation show that skin absorbs nearly 60% of the chemicals in skin care directly into the bloodstream, so try not to use harsh, heavily scented soaps and washing products.
Applying an oil based product that has anti-inflammatory and soothing properties to the affected areas regularly will help the skin protect and heal itself.
Our Soothing Skin Salve (here’s the plug!) is an award-winning eczema product that I developed because of Dominic’s condition, which eventually launched Mia & Dom Organic Skin Care. We are proud of our 5 star reviews from our customers.
I will be exploring other skin conditions in this Family Skin Care blog series over the coming weeks. Next time we will be discussing Psoriasis.
Thanks for reading
Credit where credit is due the photograph is from a happy mummy (Kate) whose baby’s eczema was eased with our Salve