Tips for parents
Does breastfeeding protect my child from eczema?
It's possible, but not certain. We generally advise mothers with an atopic family history to breastfeed exclusively for as long as possible, in order to limit contact with digestive allergens; and to put off food diversification until after the age of 6 months. Though these precautions lessen the risk of atopic dermatitis, they don't entirely rule it out.
Is eczema linked to diet?
Not normally, but sometimes children have an intolerance to certain foods, which aggravates their eczema. Your doctor can check for a food allergy and, depending on the results, a personal diet can be created.
How should I dress my child if they have eczema?
Avoid wool directly on the skin, as well as synthetic materials that can irritate the skin. Choose cotton that has been carefully rinsed after being washed. Avoid softeners.
Can I bathe my child if they have eczema?
Of course. A bath has several advantages: it cleanses, relaxes and prepares the skin for cream. However, make sure to follow these precautions: the bath shouldn't last too long (10 min. maximum) nor should it be too hot (93°F degree maximum), as heat encourages itching; use soap-free products. And most importantly, share this precious moment of relaxation with your child.
Is eczema psychosomatic?
Not really, but like all chronic conditions, stress can accentuate the symptoms.
Will my child have asthma?
Since atopic dermatitis is part of what we call the atopic "profile" (genetic predisposition to atopic dermatitis, hay fever, asthma, conjunctivitis), it is possible that your child may present some of these atopic symptoms. That is why we advise avoiding an overly allergenic environment (dust, feathers, fur.)
Can we have a pet?
Fur and feathers can be the cause of respiratory allergies. It is difficult to give an absolute answer. If your child has an animal that they love and that doesn't cause them trouble, you can keep it; if there is sneezing or conjunctivitis, it might be better to keep the animal away from the child. If you don't already have an animal, the risk of allergies is something to consider when getting one.
Are there hygiene rules to follow around the house?
Avoid dust (vacuum instead of sweeping), carpets, rugs and tapestries (full of dust). Choose cotton linens and washable curtains. Avoid feather pillows and wool mattresses. Regularly treat bedding against mites. Avoid household cleaners with aggressive chemicals. Choose hypoallergenic detergents and avoid softeners. Don't overheat rooms (66°F maximum) and make sure to air them out every day.
Can my child go out in the sun?
Atopic dermatitis often improves during good weather. However, avoid any direct exposure to the sun before the age of 3 and always apply a high index sun protection product on exposed areas. Choose mineral screens over chemical filters.