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managing eczema questions for your doctor

Questions to ask your doctor about managing eczema

When we go to the doctors about managing eczema, we usually expect our GP to ask questions about symptoms of our child’s eczema and lifestyle behaviours. However, it is also helpful to know what questions you, as a parent can ask your doctor when your child has eczema. Being proactive and engaging in a conversation with your doctor will help expand your knowledge of this skin condition and assist you in understanding what treatment are available to help you with managing eczema . The health of your child is important to both you and your doctor, so keeping the lines of communication open will allow your doctor to help you and your family develop an appropriate eczema skin care treatment plan and reduce the impact eczema can have on your child and family.

How can I prepare for my child’s visit to the doctor about managing eczema?

It is a good idea to prepare before going in to the doctor’s appointment as it will allow you to get the most out of your visit and leave better equipped to manage your child’s eczema. Researching eczema beforehand can help you understand how eczema can affect your child and give you an idea of what you would like to know from your doctor.

It is also useful to keep a record of your child’s eczema in terms of flare ups, what they have been eating, or whether there have been any lifestyle changes triggering eczema. Sharing this information with your doctor, as well as how you are already managing eczema will help you develop an eczema management plan. Be prepared and download our eczema management resource so you finish your consultation with a documented plan on how to manage your child’s eczema.

What questions should I  ask my child’s doctor about managing eczema?

We should keep in mind whatever triggers our little one’s eczema the most, may be different to someone else with eczema and therefore you might be asking more specific and individual questions depending on your child’s symptoms.

Here are some questions to ask your doctor to help you with managing eczema:

  • What type of eczema does my child have?
  • Does my child also have psoriasis?
  • How severe is my child’s eczema?
  • What should I be looking out for in terms of flare ups?
  • What should I do when a flare up happens?
  • Will my child’s eczema go away?
  • Will my child be assessed for asthma, hayfever?
  • Does diet affect my child’s eczema?
  • Will food and allergy testing help?
  • What should I be doing on a daily basis to help manage my child’s eczema?
  • Are there specialists I should consider seeing, such as a dermatologist?

Managing eczema always involves a daily skincare routine  to ensure the skin is nourished and hydrated.  Step one of our pharmacist developed itchy baby co. skincare routine involves giving your child a daily bath with our bath soak to keep their skin hydrated and clean from irritants. Our colloidal oatmeal bath soaks leave a film on the skin to keep moisture in and stop hydration escaping from the skin’s surface. They have moisturising, anti-inflammatory and anti-itch properties.

Step two involves rubbing our long lasting moisturiser into your child’s skin immediately after the bath, then at least twice more throughout the day. Our moisturiser melts into the skin, going deep into the skin’s layers to help prevent dryness and have a long lasting effect on the skin’s protective barrier.

Step three pays extra attention to areas of the body which are commonly affected by eczema, such as the face, using our face mask, and the scalp, using our scalp oil. These products can be used on any area of the body which needs more intensive hydration.

Natural, pharmacist products to help you target your child’s eczema can be found in our itchy baby co. shop.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.


how do I manage eczema without a cure? need eczema cure

What is the best eczema cure for my child?

There is no eczema cure yet. The emotional burden eczema causes and the impact it has on the quality of your family life sometimes goes unrecognised and unsupported. Unfortunately, there is no eczema cure and the effect eczema can have on the life of your child and family can be ongoing indefinitely. Although there is no eczema cure, there are many products available which can help to manage eczema. On your eczema journey it is important to remember that what is effective for one child or eczema sufferer might not be as effective for another.

Is allergy testing an eczema cure?

Many eczema children also have food allergies and environmental allergies like house dust mite. Finding out what your child is specifically allergic to will allow you to avoid these triggers and therefore better control eczema flare ups. However, avoiding what your child is allergic to is not an eczema cure as these allergies are not the cause of eczema.

The most common type of allergy testing is skin prick testing, where the skin is pricked with a small needle that contains a little bit of the allergen on it. If the doctor sees an itchy, red lump appearing within 15-20 minutes, it means your child is allergic to that particular allergen. This is generally a safe procedure as the red lump usually goes away within a couple of hours. Another, less common type of allergy testing are blood tests, which are usually done if your child is taking other medications that could interfere with the results of skin prick testing.

Managing your child’s skin without an eczema cure

Without an eczema cure, the key to maintaining healthy skin and and managing eczema is to keep the skin well hydrated and nourished. This will not only help stop dryness, itchiness and irritation but it can also strengthen the skin’s natural barrier to avoid environmental triggers and bacteria from sitting on the skin’s surface and causing inflammation. Without an eczema cure the best way we can manage eczema is by sticking to a skin care routine of bathing and moisturising to hydrate, nourish and protect our children’s skin.

Regular moisturising and bath time

Since dry skin leads to itchiness and inflammation, it is essential to find a moisturiser that works best on your little one to keep their skin soft and hydrated. Generally ointments, work best for eczema as they contain no water, making them effective in hydrating and moisturising the skin. These moisturisers take a long time to evaporate from the skin’s surface, holding in moisture for a much longer time.

Regular bathing in lukewarm water for about 10 minutes helps manage eczema because it washes away any irritants that may be sitting on the skin’s surface, and hydrates eczema skin. Our itchy baby co. natural oatmeal bath soak with marshmallow root contain natural properties that soothe, nourish and hydrate all types of skin, especially eczema skin, without stripping it off its natural barrier, which can often happen using soaps and bubble baths.

Is coconut oil an eczema cure?

Coconut oil in a natural oil taken from the edible flesh of a coconut, and contains many properties that can help to treat eczema, such as:

  • Vitamin E – needed for healthy skin to grow and repair itself
  • Lauric acid – contains antibacterial properties as well as anti-inflammatory properties that help control the growth of bacteria on dry skin.
  • Saturated Fats – softens the skin by adding a natural barrier to retain moisture
  • Polyphenols – have antioxidant properties to fight skin cell damage.

Our itchy baby co. natural moisturiser contains organic coconut oil as a main ingredient, which helps to hydrate, soothe and moisturise eczema skin. Minimising the risk of flare ups.

Remember with every product you try, it is important to patch test first to check if your child has an allergic reaction.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.

child have asthma eczema hayfever

What is the risk of my eczema child developing asthma and hay fever?

Eczema is commonly associated with hay fever, food allergies and asthma. Children who have eczema are more likely to suffer from asthma and hay fever because they are all connected in a group of diseases called the Atopic Triad . This refers to the genetic chance of your child having other conditions as well as eczema. Generally eczema is the condition diagnosed first as part of the atopic triad, then hay fever and asthma.

What is the link between eczema and asthma?

According to research, around 50-70% of children with eczema eventually develop asthma and both are associated with allergies and hay fever. Inflammation occurs in both and with asthma the inflammation happens in the lungs, and eczema on the skin. Researchers have discovered the gene that produces a protein that stops the skin becoming dry (filaggrin) isn’t effective in children who have eczema. Lack of filaggrin may also lead to foreign bodies entering your child’s lungs and result in asthma.

We do not know the exact cause of either of these conditions but we know that genetics play a part, so if you have a history of allergies, hay fever and asthma, there is a greater chance for your little one to develop eczema.

Studies also showed that:

  • Up to 80% of kids with eczema get hay fever or asthma later in childhood.
  • Approximately 35% of adults with asthma have had eczema when they were kids
  • Around 37% of kids with moderate to severe eczema, also have food allergies.

What is the link between eczema and hayfever?

Recent research suggests that a lack of filaggrin also increases the chance of experiencing hay fever. Children with eczema may have a defect in their skin barrier and these small gaps make the skin dry out quickly, allowing germs and allergens to enter the body, resulting in inflammation. If this inflammation reaches the lining of your child’s nose, it will cause a runny nose, resulting in hay fever. Histamine is also released as a result of pathogens entering the body, causing a stuffy nose, sneezing and increasing the risk of hay fever.

Another important reason to manage your child’s eczema

It is important to always remember to stick to your little one’s regular skincare routine because it provides a protective barrier from allergens and keeps moisture from escaping. This helps to lessen the risk of irritants entering the air passages of the lungs, which can result in asthma or hay fever.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.


how to help our children's eczema in summer

How do I manage my children’s eczema better in Summer?

Our children’s eczema is easily affected by changes in weather. We often think winter is the toughest time of the year for eczema skin because of the dry air, cold temperatures and low humidity, making the skin more susceptible to eczema flare ups. However, summer also plays a role in our children’s eczema, triggering flare ups and severe itching. What changes can we make to better manage our children’s eczema in Summer? 

How does Summer affect our children’s eczema?

During warm weather, your child will sweat more to try and regulate their body temperature, causing water loss from your child’s body and drying out their skin.  This can break down the skin’s natural barrier, making it harder to keep bacteria and irritants away from the body and increase the risk of infection.

Sweat contains trace amounts of chemicals such as zinc, magnesium, calcium and iron, which may be irritating to the skin. Heat also stimulates the itch reflex, making your child itchier than normal, so it is important to make sure your child is kept in a cool environment and drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated.

To add to the impact of warm weather and eczema, children with eczema have more difficulty regulating heat and allowing it to escape from the surface of the skin. This means that their skin is warmer than others, and warm, hot skin is itchy skin.

How we can help our children’s eczema Summer

  • Drink plenty of water

It is important to make sure your child is drinking plenty of water to help keep the body’s core temperature from rising. Also, try to avoid the hottest part of the day to minimise flare ups and have better control of your child’s body temperature. Ice blocks are also a great way to cool down and hydrate your child.

  • Eczema Friendly diet

Eczema is an inflammatory skin condition and histamine is released into the body as part of an allergic reaction. A diet rich in foods which have anti-inflammatory and antihistamine properties can help to reduce eczema flare ups. These foods include broccoli, apples, cherries, spinach and kale. Fatty fish contains high levels of Omega-3 fatty acid, which is also a strong anti-inflammatory. It is important to give your child foods with a high-water content such as cucumbers, apples, celery, carrots and pears to help keep their body hydrated.

  • Moisturise daily

Be sure to keep your child’s regular moisturiser with you at all times because the moisturiser will act as a barrier on the skin to keep away from unwanted bacteria and prevent infection.  The best time to moisturise is within two minutes of taking your little one out of the water while the skin is still damp as this is the optimum time for absorbing moisture into the skin.

  • Eczema and swimming

Although chlorine from swimming pools can aggravate your child’s eczema, it can also help to reduce the bacteria which causes infection in eczema skin. You can help lessen the irritation from chlorine by applying moisturiser half an hour before swimming as this will provide a barrier on the skin so it it less affected by chlorine. Try your best to avoid warm water in pools (such as baby wading pools and spas) as warm water can increase the chances of flare ups. A lukewarm shower immediately after the pool followed by moisturising will remove chlorine from the skin, minimising contact and aggravation.

  • Regular bathing

Regular bathing in lukewarm water, for about 10 minutes is important in managing eczema because it helps to wash any irritants that may be sitting on the skin’s surface. Make sure to check that the water is not too hot as this can trigger intense itching.

  • Stick to daily eczema skincare routine

The most important part of managing your child’s eczema is sticking to their eczema skin care routine to ensure the skin is nourished and hydrated. There are a range of ointments and creams which can be used to give as much moisture as possible against triggers to manage dry skin. Moisturisers and other skin care products for your child’s eczema can be found in our itchy baby co. shop.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional.


what is the best cream for eczema

Difference between a cream and an ointment for eczema?

Finding a suitable moisturiser, whether it be an ointment or cream, for our child’s eczema isn’t straight forward, especially when we have a range of options, so it is important to understand what works best for our child’s skin and what minimises the severity of flare ups. Regular moisturising is the best way to keep our children’s skin hydrated and allow their skin’s natural barrier to stop hydration escaping and stop irritants getting into the skin. There are specific properties to look out for when choosing a suitable cream or ointment for your child’s eczema.

What is the difference between an ointment and a cream?

Creams are mixtures made up of half water and half oil. This means creams are not greasy to the touch, spread easily and wash off quickly with water. But this also means creams evaporate quickly from the surface of the skin drying the it out at the same time. Creams can also contain stabilisers, which are added to the formula to help the water mix in with the oil,  and can also use more than one type of preservative. These added ingredients can irritate your child’s skin, so it is important to read the label before purchasing the product.

An ointment is mainly made up of oils, there is a lot less, if any water in an ointment. Our itchy baby co. moisturiser, which is an ointment, does not contain any water. Ointments are thicker, stickier and greasier, because they contain a higher concentration of oil than in creams. This means ointments are more effective in hydrating and moisturising the skin than creams, because they very slowly evaporate from the skin’s surface, holding in moisture for a much longer time. This long lasting moisturising effect lessens the need to itch and keeps the skin soft and hydrated.

Tips for choosing a suitable moisturiser for eczema

  • Check to see if water is the main ingredient in your moisturiser. If it is, it may not be effective for eczema skin as it will evaporate quickly which means less time to lock in moisture and hydrate the skin.
  • Eczema isn’t a ‘one size fits all’ situation, because a moisturiser works on one person, it doesn’t mean it will work for every child, so we should keep an eye out for what our child responds to effectively. If you know your child is allergic to a particular ingredient, read the product’s label carefully before purchasing.
  • The first time you use a new moisturiser on your child, apply a small amount to the inside of their elbow. Do not wash the area for about 24 hours and watch out for any unusual allergic reaction such as increased redness, pain, rash or itchiness. If you don’t see any side effects, you may start using the moisturiser regularly on your little one but always keep an eye out for flare ups and stop using if it reacts badly to your child’s eczema.

When is the best time to moisturise eczema skin?

Moisturisers are most effective when applied on damp skin, within two minutes of taking your child out of the bath and gently patting them dry.  This is the best time for the skin to absorb and lock in moisture which of course helps in managing eczema. Moisturise your child’s skin at least twice more during the day.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional


do eczema flare ups improve with age?

Do eczema flare ups get better as my child grows older?

All the time, but especially when our child is experiencing an eczema flare up, we desperately hope these flare ups will be a thing of the past, and sooner rather than later. In most cases eczema will not completely go away, however the severity and frequency of  eczema flare ups may improve as they get older. Eczema can be diagnosed at any age but studies show that it is most common in children under five years old.

How is eczema different in babies, compared to older children?

Eczema usually first appears at three months old with flare ups on the face, chin, scalp and forehead in infants. The location of eczema flare ups on the body can change between six to twelve months because this is the time your little one is learning to crawl. The most common flare ups appear on the elbows and knees as it is easier for your child to scratch or rub these areas while they are crawling. It is important to look out for infection from the eczema flare up, which can form a yellow crust or small pus bumps on the skin. Infection is common with eczema because the skin is open from scratching and bacteria can easily invade the skin’s surface.

Around the age of two, you might start to see eczema flare ups on the creases behind the knees and elbows, the wrists, hands and ankles. Sometimes the skin around the mouth is affected and this can sometimes be linked to teething.

At what age do eczema symptoms improve?

There is a very good chance that eczema will improve as your child gets older and eventually grows out of it, however there may be the occasional bout of eczema which we need to be prepared for. There is no exact age at which your child’s eczema will become substantially less severe and manageable but generally many children will have grown out of their eczema by the time they start school. By the time high school starts, most children will only be affected by eczema flare ups very occasionally. It is important to keep in mind that people with a history of eczema are more likely to have dry skin even as an adult, and should maintain a lifestyle to keep their skin moisturised and hydrated at all times.  

What can I do to treat my child’s eczema until it gets better?

Giving your child a daily bath to keep their skin hydrated and clean from irritants is an important part of lessening the number of eczema flare ups. Immediately after the bath apply a moisturiser to help strengthen the skin’s natural barrier which stops hydration escaping the skin and triggers getting in. Maintaining a skincare routine is essential for eczema management.

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love and care by Julia and the itchy baby co. team x

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only and you should always consult your medical professional.

What is nummular eczema, how do I manage and treat it?

What is nummular eczema and how do I treat and manage it?

Nummular eczema (also called nummular dermatitis) is an itchy rash that forms coin-shaped patches on the skin. It appears scaly and red around the circular shaped lesions, and can cause itching and burning on the skin. It can occur at any age and is difficult to treat. This less common type of eczema is long lasting but there are periods of the time where nummular eczema can get better and then worse again.

 What causes Nummular eczema in my child?

There is no known cause for nummular eczema, however it is more likely to occur in children with a family history of asthma, allergies or atopic eczema. It is more common during winter and is associated with dry skin. Your child may have very sensitive skin that gets irritated easily so try and keep their skin hydrated throughout the day with regular moisturising, this can help to manage nummular eczema.

 What can trigger Nummular eczema?

  • temperature changes
  • stress
  • dry skin
  • irritants such as wool, rough clothing, soaps and detergents

Nummular eczema can look like ringworm, so it is important to make sure that the rash you see is not a fungal infection, especially if your child is not responding to treatment. Keep seeking advice from your doctor to make sure your child’s nummular eczema is being properly managed.

How can I manage my child’s Nummular eczema?

Unfortunately, like all eczema there is no cure, however there are effective ways to manage and control this type of eczema for your child. Keep up with your moisturising skincare routine, as well as avoiding common triggers. It is important to keep in mind that each child with eczema has different triggers which can bring on a flare up, so try and watch out for what worsens your child’s symptoms so you can then avoid them.

  • Speak to your doctor about covering  the affected area. This is because unlike atopic eczema, nummular eczema causes lesions in the skin. Covering the affected areas with moist bandages will keep the skin hydrated and protected from environmental irritants. Applying moisturisers regularly also helps keep your child’s skin soft and minimises the dryness that that could lead to severe itching.


  • Giving your child a daily bath with a moisturising bath soak helps keep their skin clean, hydrated, moisturised and clear from irritants. This is because  water washes away any bacteria or allergens that may have built up on your child’s skin, minimising the possibility of infection. Hot water can increase the symptoms of eczema, so it is wise to keep your little one in a lukewarm bath for no more than ten minutes.


  • Stick to your little one’s regular skincare routine to keep moisture from escaping. Daily treatment helps manage your child’s eczema and helps block irritants from entering their skin or causing infection.

The good news is many children’s skin seems to clear up from nummular eczema. It is important to continue to manage symptoms to avoid itchiness, distress and infection. 

This blog post was brought to you and your family with love from Julia and the itchy baby co. team x.

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult



managing scratching skin

How can I help my eczema child stop scratching their skin?

When your child keeps scratching their eczema skin, nerve endings are opened which allows bacteria into their sensitive skin, leading to bacterial infections, inflammation and increased risk of scarring even when eczema flare-ups are reduced. We want to do everything we can to avoid the itch-scratch cycle which once your child starts scratching can be very hard to break and often leads to infection.

What is making  my child scratch their skin?

The need to start scratching is generally triggered by the external environment such as dust, house dust mites or even prickly clothing. When your child’s skin feels aggravated, the brain receives a nerve signal, urging your child to start scratching really fast to relieve the irritation. Once the irritation is gone, there are no more signals received and that itchy, scratching feeling goes away. However, by then your child’s skin is probably already inflamed and broken which makes it easily infected.

Tips on how to stop your child scratching

  • Regular bath time routine

Bathing your child regularly will remove any irritants sitting on their skin which could cause inflammation and infection and by using effective products, it will also will give the skin the best opportunity to absorb moisture.

  • A bedtime routine

Children with eczema often find it difficult to sleep during bed time especially because there is no activity to distract them from scratching. Their skin can also get hot at night, and cause more irritation and flare-ups. A good bedtime routine can help your child have a good night’s sleep. It is important to keep your child’s room cool and dress them in comfortable nightwear, preferably clothing made of breathable cotton, as well as light cotton bedsheets and cotton blankets when needed. Layering cotton sheets and cotton blankets should be used instead of heavy doonas which trap heat around the body, which increases the need to scratch.  Make sure to also keep your child’s skin hydrated by applying moisturiser, around 20 minutes before bed time to let it soak in.

  • Use Cold Compress on eczema skin

It helps to use a damp washcloth and hold the compress to your little one’s skin until the itching sensation goes away. This is especially useful on hot days to take the heat out of the skin, or an a very itchy patch of skin when your child has come into contact with an eczema trigger.

This blog post was brought to you and your child with love and care from Julia and the itchy baby co. team. X

Disclaimer: Information provided is of a general nature only, and you should always consult your medical professional




what i sthe difference between eczema and hives

What is the difference between eczema and hives?

Hives and eczema are two skin conditions which often get confused. Being a parent we are confronted by many different challenges. Children’s skin can be affected by different types of conditions and some of them can look very similar. As allergies and immune system irregularities become more and more common many of us will also need to manage how the skin responds to allergens as part of our childrens body’s immune response.

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Are eczema and dermatitis the same thing?

What is the difference between eczema and dermatitis?

The words eczema and dermatitis often are used to talk about the same condition of itchy, dry, inflamed and irritated skin.  So what is the difference between them or are they the same?

The answer is simple, eczema is one form of of dermatitis. And because it is the most common form, it is often used as a general term for all the different types of dermatitis.

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