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The rise of allergies in children

The rise of allergies in children

Why are allergies rising in Australia? These days there seems to be so many more children and adults who are experiencing allergies, especially food allergies. But why? Why suddenly are allergies on the rise? Why do my toddlers suffer from allergies when I don’t?

This question is on my mind a lot since my youngest toddler is allergic to eggs and pineapple and my eldest is allergic to yeast. Allergic reactions to foods are also more common in children with eczema.

The answer to why allergies are on the rise is that we’re not totally sure. The experts say it is a bit of everything – our western lifestyle and environment, a bit of genetics but not one thing alone is to blame.

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balancing work and family

Balancing work and family

I have just finished reading Annabel Crabb’s The Wife Drought. And wow! It really opened my eyes to how most families in Australia survive the everyday… and it made me start thinking about how I manage and prioritise my work and family.

work and family balance – when I’m at work

As soon as I get to work I write my to-do list and prioritise the day’s tasks. This is especially important knowing that I have to leave work by 5 o’clock for daycare pick up.

Throughout the day I check-in with myself asking if the task I’m doing right now is the best use of my time, is there a another, faster way I could do this to get the same result?

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Surviving with two kids under two

Surviving with two kids under two

Yes, I was one of the crazy mums who planned two kids under two. I thought having my two kids close together would be a win-win. I get all the hard stuff out of the way in a shorter space of time and they become good pals being closer in age. When I told people my plan they said I was mad and it would be so much hard work, and they were right, having two kids 20 months apart was such hard work. But now with my youngest about to turn two things are definitely getting easier and although there were times I didn’t think I would cope, seeing them play and grow together now, I would plan it the same way again.

Some tips on surviving with two kids under two

Here are some tips I used to get through the tough times of having two kids both aged under two… Read more

Eczema and asthma

Managing your toddler’s asthma

Winter infections are made a little more serious if you have a toddler with asthma. We know if your toddler has eczema there is a higher chance they might also have asthma. In our house with two toddlers with eczema, only one of them, my eldest, also has asthma. Having been admitted to hospital a few times with chest infections made worse by asthma, there are a few extra things we do this time of year.

what is an asthma action plan?

Every six months our asthma action plan is updated by our pediatrician, but a GP would also be able to do this. Getting on top of our action plan is the first step we take to managing our toddler’s asthma in winter. Not only does it remind me of important steps to take, but also my toddler’s medication might be changed for the winter months.

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Boosting your baby's immune system

Boosting your baby’s immune system

With winter coming and two toddlers attending germ heaven (aka daycare) I’m doing everything I can to boost my toddler’s immune system and ward off nasty chest infections, earaches and the common cold.

What can you do to boost your baby or toddler’s immune system?

  • Diet

For me, boosting my toddler’s immune system starts with a good diet. Carrots, green beans, oranges and strawberries all have immune system boosting phytonutrients such as vitamin C. Phytonutrients may increase your toddler’s chance of fighting an infection.

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Eczema and dust mites

Dust mites and eczema

We were getting ready to move house and amongst all the chaos there’s one thing which really took me by surprise and that’s the amount of dust which was happily living where I couldn’t see it.

Wasn’t my weekly vacuum, mop and wet dust enough to keep dust away? Apparently not.

Of course the reason why I was so alarmed about the hidden amounts of dust is that dust mite allergen is a big trigger for eczema. Some babies skin can be become more inflamed if it comes in contact with dust mite allergen. Dust mites and eczema just don’t go together. So now I’m trying even harder to make dust mites uncomfortable in our new house with a few new tricks.

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Treating winter eczema

Treating Winter Eczema

Melting marshmellows over the open fireplace, slipping my feet into my favourite hot pink ugg boots, the smell of a yummy casserole in the oven and… my toddlers’ eczema flaring up. These are just a few things I’m thinking of as winter is approaching and yes winter eczema is very much on my mind.

Why does eczema get worse in winter?

Winter brings cold, dry air and this makes it hard for your baby’s skin to keep the moisture in. So it is even more likely that your baby’s skin will become dry, itchy and irritated. Winter also means in and out of warm heating to outside windy weather. Going from warm to cold shocks your baby’s skin which can lead to a winter eczema flare up.

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Soothing itchy skin

Soothing Itchy Skin

Baby eczema is almost always itchy and sometimes itchy skin starts even before we see a rash. The hot spots for baby eczema rash are the face and the back of the knees, wrists, hands or feet. Other spots I found to be popular for itchy skin with my baby are the fronts of the ankles and the eyelids. Sometimes the itchy skin can be so bad that if your baby is like mine, he might scratch his skin until it bleeds. This is called the itch-scratch cycle and makes your baby’s skin more irritated and inflamed.

Getting the eczema itch under control

Getting itchy skin under control is the first step to happy for skin for your baby. The first thing I do for itchy skin which brings immediate relief to my toddler is to put a cold compress on the really itchy areas. I usually do this by wrapping a small bag of frozen peas in a wet tea towel. When the need to itch seems to be dying down I rub a steroid cream into his skin quickly followed by a moisturiser. The moisturiser I use is called emulsifying ointment in water which your local pharmacist can make up for you without a prescription.

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