One-in-five children has eczema and it's a condition that causes parents a significant amount of worry. It usually appears for the first time before the age of two as a baby's skin barrier is much thinner so breaks down more easily.
Babies also lose a lot more water from their skin which allows allergens to get through. This week is National Eczema Week so Hope's Relief, the award winning natural skincare company is offering advice to parents who are concerned about their children's skin.
Parents looking for support can visit www.facebook.com/hopesreliefuk for advice and information videos from Hope's Relief resident skin expert and medical herbalist, Lindsey Miller.
Here are some of Lindsey's key pieces of advice for parents looking to protect their baby's sensitive skin, naturally:
Bath time: If your baby suffers from dry skin don't be tempted to bath every night of the week â just once or twice a week should be adequate. We know that parents and babies enjoy bath time, but baby skin is very fragile and frequent exposure to water and especially the use of soaps or bubble baths will dry the skin. When you do bath your baby, keep the water tepid and be careful to pat dry and never rub delicate areas.
Avoid scratching. This may be the biggest challenge of all but scratching only damages the skin further and can also introduce harmful bacteria into the wound. This causes further inflammation, irritation and possible infection. For young babies and children I recommend cotton body suits and scratch mittens to help them stop scratching the skin, especially at night when scratching is more common and a good night sleep is also critical to good skin health.
Identify triggers: If you are concerned that flare-ups could be related to a food allergy, don't eliminate any foods unless absolutely sure as getting a healthy balanced diet is crucial for children. Foods to keep a watch for are: cows' milk (dairy), eggs, soya, wheat, fish and nuts. Solanceae or deadly nightshade family food groups can also cause problems with some people; these include potatoes, aubergines, cucumbers and peppers. I often find that tomatoes and orange juice can be the hidden and unsuspected culprits!
Omega 3: Children often don't eat enough of this wonderful fatty acid which is fantastic for skin as it is anti-inflammatory and therefore good for dry, irritable, sore skin conditions. Is it any wonder, as some of the richest sources are found in cold water oily fish such as: mackerel, herring, sardines, pilchards, salmon and tuna (fresh, not tinned!) Not often top of a child's favourite foods list! To combat this, I often recommend an Omega 3 fish oil supplement high in EPA (Eicosapentaenoic acid).
Choose natural: Synthetic chemicals in everyday skincare products like Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, parabens, mineral oils, petrochemicals and artificial fragrances can all cause skin irritation. Choose natural, unperfumed, uncoloured products and those that are soap-free. To clear up particularly bad flare-ups you need to be committed and consistent with your care. It isn't always necessary to use hydrocortisone creams. For a baby's skin I would use an intensive treatment like Hope's Relief âIntensive Rescue Cream'. Apply the cream 3-4 times a day for 1-2 weeks until the condition has improved. You may begin to see results over night, but for the most cases it will take time for the skin to heal and this usually takes between 3-6 weeks.
Small lifestyle changes: Always seek professional medical advice and help. In my experience there is rarely one single cause for stubborn skin conditions. Making small lifestyle changes in all areas is generally more helpful to keep problems at bay long term.
For more information click on the links below.
14 Tips on how to keep your baby cool during heatwave
Lucy Shrimpton, AKA The Sleep Nanny has come up with 14 tips on how to keep your little ones cool at night during the summer
Gearing up for summer cycling
Summer is the perfect time to get back in the saddle out cycling with the whole family
It’s only cold when you’re standing still…
So, winter is quickly creeping up on us and it’s often all too easy to find ourselves slowly slumping into hibernation. Dark mornings, cold blustery evenings and it seems we would all rather reach for our duvet than even contemplate heading outdoors to get active!
5 ways to make fitness fun for the whole family!
Being a parent is hard work. Finsing time to keep fit and healthy seems to be a struggle, but here Sarah Philp shows us how to build it into our everyday lives!
Advent Calendar Competition
This year we are bringing back our Advent Calendar Competition on our Facebook page! Each day from 1st - 24th December we will be running a task on the page and picking someone to win a prize bundle. With prizes from Our Little Globe, Stuck on You, Thermapen, Scentco UK, ToucanBox, HamaBeads, Orchard Toys, Pip Ahoy, Gotrovo and more, don't miss it!
If you are looking for ideas to keep the children busy throughout the Christmas holidays, or the kids want some ideas and inspiration for cards and gifts them take a look at our Winter KidsZone. Jam packed full of fun ideas that everyone can get involved in! Activities for indoors and out - some are messy, some are not! What are you waiting for?!?!