If you’re like me, you’re constantly on the hunt for those hidden food and allergen triggers that cause eczema to flare up. It seems that just when I figure out what not to give my kids; something else starts causing us trouble. The real work of a parent who has a child with eczema really is finding triggers and managing them – but what if you simply can’t figure them out? Sometimes triggers are like a puzzle that stumps the best of us, but there’s still hope. There are some things you can do to give your child and yourself some relief while you learn more about their eczema and what works. Today I’ll be sharing some tried-and-tested basics with you to help keep things calm while you continue your search.
While this tip won’t solve your problems right now, it is the absolute best and easiest way to find triggers that may otherwise keep you guessing. A journal can help you find patterns that would normally slip between the cracks of daily experiences, and they can give you some really powerful insight into things like mood, sleep, food, and immunity.
While many parents carry a notebook and pen with them, you can certainly go hi-tech. There are tons of apps out there that let you mark down what your child eats, what they do, and where they go while also noting how they feel. In just a couple of weeks these apps will create patterns and show you if there’s a link between a certain food or activity and a challenging (or positive) health reaction. I recently wrote about some of the top rated allergy food journal apps out there, and you can see it here: https://blog.scratchmenot.com/the-best-food-allergy-journal-apps/
No matter what caused an eczema flare up, a lukewarm or cool bath is almost sure to help. A cool to lukewarm bath with oils and toys can easily be one of the most positive treatment experiences any kid has. I rely on baths all the time and they always help. Just make sure to lock the moisture in with a cream or oil within minutes of ending the bath.
When itching is out of control, kids want to scratch. We’ve all experienced how crazy-making an itch can be, so it’s no wonder our kids go absolutely wild sometimes – to the point of injuring themselves. Think back to that itchy spot on your back that you stretched to scratch. It felt sooo good to finally reach and scratch that spot. Imagine your child’s eczema as the same “hard to reach spot, but oh so good to scratch” spot. A child could easily get lost in scratching. I call this “The Zone”. Eczema’s itch may not go away in an instant, but we can approach it differently by rubbing instead of scratching.
Rubbing is actually a great way to relieve itching in a non-harmful way, but young kids may need come coaching on how to choosing rubbing over scratching. You can help! Using your favorite moisturizer, go for brief, light massage-style applications that will help bring blood and detoxing to the skin’s surface while also benefitting the skin with moisturizing. This is a go-to technique that many parents on the ScratchMeNot Facebook page rave about!
Do you have a favorite go-to remedy that helps no matter what the mysterious cause may be?
Share with us in the comments below!