Infant eczema is characterised by dry, red, raised, rough, itchy patches on your baby’s skin. The common areas eczema will develop on your baby’s skin are the wrist folds, back of the knees and ankle folds. Patches can become moist and infected.
Common causes are difficult to detect and can include:
- Allergies to foods such as dairy protein and environmental factors such as dust, carpets and pollens;
- Intolerance to foods such as salicylates in fruit and vegetables and additives such as natural flavourings in processed foods;
- Intolerance to scented substances such as makeup, perfume and cleaning products;
- Hereditary factors;
- Aggravated by rough or tight clothing, sand, dry air and dirt.
How to help your baby even if you don’t know the cause:
- Dress your baby in light, loose fitting clothes made from natural fabric;
- Wash bedding and clothes in chemical and fragrant free washing liquid and rinse well;
- Avoid perfumed bath wash and soap – use natural products or just water;
- Protect your baby’s skin by applying natural moisturisers containing essential fats several times a day;
- When laying baby on the floor or ground for play time use cotton blankets and avoid laying baby directly on carpet, grass or sand;
- Breast feed as long as possible.
There is no immediate cure for infant eczema but the good news is most children grow out of the condition by five to seven years old. In the meantime, do what you can to relieve the uncomfortable symptoms and seek professional advice.
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