One of the more common skin conditions seen in young children is eczema. Typically, this problem starts at a very young age and can lead well into young adulthood. While most people know the common "triggers" of this condition, there are a few less known culprits that act to amplify eczema-related symptoms. If your child has developed eczema, it's important to be aware of the following three triggers:
While food-related worsening of eczema is rare, it is possible allergic reactions to food causes skin irritation that can make your child's condition worse. Particularly if your child is allergic to milk, eggs, or wheat, consuming these products can cause an outbreak on the skin that exacerbates the symptoms of eczema.
Specifically, there are three different ways food allergies can cause eczema symptoms in young children:
- Increased itching or scratching – Some children can have a reaction to particular foods that causes them to vigorously itch or scratch their skin to relieve the irritation. The process of harshly rubbing the skin can cause eczema symptoms to become more pronounced, damaging the skin and underlying tissue. The best way to highlight and rectify this problem is to keep a note of everything you are feeding your child. This will allow you to recognize particular trigger foods you should remove from their diet.
- Hypersensitivity – If your child's food allergy is particularly severe, they may experience an immediate reaction when their trigger food is consumed. This will cause a rapid outbreak in "surface symptoms," such as a significant rash, redness of the skin, tissue swelling, and fever-like temperatures. These symptoms can occur independently of eczema; however, if they occur alongside the condition, their effect can be amplified.
- Delayed hypersensitivity – This involves the same symptoms as immediate sensitivity; however, they do not begin to show until a few hours after consumption. With delayed hypersensitivity, surface symptoms on the skin and body can occur alongside abdominal pain and diarrhea.
If you believe a food allergy is making your child's condition worse, it's important to seek medical advice straight away. Visiting a dermatologist will help to control the outbreak of eczema symptoms; however, it is also important to visit a doctor or allergy clinic in order to treat the allergy.
Dust mites are tiny, microscopic creatures that lurk in every home. Typically, these insects are found in bedrooms or underneath sofas, where there are significant collections of dust.
The presence of dust mites in the air supply can cause your child's eczema symptoms to worsen, because mites tend to become airborne easily, landing on your child's skin and causing irritation.
When it comes to house dust mites, you may believe simply vacuuming more often will remove the source of the problem. However, it is very difficult to clear a home entirely of dust mites. Not only are they problematic to find and remove, but they will inevitably find their way into your home down the line.
One of the best lines of defense against dust mites is to control the humidity in your home. Dust mites are unable to survive when humidity drops below 40%, so taking measures to reduce your home's humidity can stop the problem from occurring.
Soaps and Laundry Detergent
Your choice of soaps and laundry detergents can be vital when it comes to controlling your child's eczema. The majority of soaps and detergents act to removal oil from the skin, making the skin dry and more sensitive to chemical irritants. Specifically, bargain brands found in discount stores usually contain harsh chemicals that can exacerbate eczema symptoms on sensitive skin.
To help your child's eczema, it's best to search for products specifically designed for sufferers. Although they may be slightly more expensive, they will help your child cope with skin irritation and discomfort over the long run.
The most important thing to look for is detergents that don't contain sodium laurel sulfate (SLS). This substance has been used by researchers to strip skin prior to testing substances for dermatitis. As such, this substance will act to amplify any existing eczema systems and make your child's skin much more uncomfortable.
Check with professional dermatology services for more tips and treatment options.