If your kids have Eczema you know how frustrating it can be to deal with! Trying to prevent a baby or toddler from scratching their skin is nearly impossible and not knowing exactly what causes it is extremely frustrating!!!
Also many African American and biracial kids have sensitive skin that’s prone to drying out. Since my children are biracial I have to be more aware to keep their skin hydrated. This was hard for me initially because my skin is not prone to drying out so if I don’t remember to moisturize, it’s not a big deal. That’s not the case with my mixed babies.
Both of my children have Eczema, although how much it bothers them and when it flares up, seems to be different for both of them.
I was put through the ringer when my daughter was a baby and started showing symptoms of it.
I noticed she had a patch of skin right above her foot that was a lighter color and she would scratch it a lot. When I took her to the doctor, initially they told me she had ringworm and prescribed something for that.
Of course that didn’t work and she ended up scratching it more.
In an effort to keep her from scratching it I would put gauze on it and then a sock over it.
The scratching was getting worse and she would often scratch it when she was sleeping.
One time when she was napping, she got through the sock and gauze and scratched it til it bled!
(Notice the one sock that covered her eczema patch, which she always wore)
We went back to the doctor and the patch had become infected from her scratching it so much. So now she was on antibiotics and then they decided to try steroids for eczema.
The infection went away and the steroids seemed to work, but her skin became a lot lighter where the patch was.
I thought maybe it was from her scratching but then her doctor referred us to a dermatologist to make sure it was actually Eczema.
Of course it was and we found out that the steroids were actually bleaching her skin!
So we finally she was given a prescription cream that made the patch go away and eventually her skin returned to a normal color.
During this nightmare of a time dealing with her Eczema I went through a lot of trial and error with various creams and body washes to find one that wouldn’t aggravate her skin.
Eventually my son got Eczema as well, but his was nowhere near as bad as my daughter’s, as he didn’t scratch it. But his rough patches seemed harder to get rid of with any cream I tried.
Of the many creams I tried, most either weren’t moisturizing enough or didn’t seem to help the Eczema go away. But I finally came across Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy Nighttime Balm and this has worked the best for both of my kids!
Right away I noticed a huge difference in their skin, it was softer and the patches were gone! I do have to use it daily to keep the eczema at bay for my son.
Keep in mind that there is no cure for Eczema currently, but there are things you can and should do to reduce flare ups!
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Products You Need To Heal Eczema On Biracial Skin
Because eczema is so common in biracial children, here are some tips if you’re struggling to keep your child’s eczema under control.
1) Don’t take daily baths!
I know in every parenting book I read it talks about the nightly ritual of bathing your child to peacefully put them to sleep…well unfortunately that’s out of the question for you!
Your child should have a bath a couple times a week if necessary with warm water, not hot! Hot water will aggravate their skin as will frequent bathing. It sucks any moisture out of their skin.
I was actually told lukewarm water is best but my kids most of the time won’t get in a lukewarm bath so I make it warm and keep their baths down to twice a week unless they are incredibly dirty and need an extra bath.
2) Stick to unscented body wash
That freshly washed baby/little kid smell is so addicting! However, your child’s Eczema will definitely become aggravated if you use scented bath washes.
You’ll need to find a good body wash that won’t irritate their skin. I’ve gone through so many washes and the one that’s worked the best and is most gentle on their skin is this Cetaphil baby wash.
3) Invest in a good cream
Finding a good, moisturizing cream is a must! Not just any lotion will help moisturize your child’s skin and help their Eczema go away. There’s a difference between lotions and creams as creams are thicker.
I found that lotions did nothing to keep my kids skin moisturized so I always have to use creams or balms. Again, I’ve tried A LOT of creams and vaselines for my kids, because although the Aveeno nighttime balm works the best, it’s pricey.
But if you find a pricier cream that works, keep using it! Don’t try to switch to a cheaper version like I did, which then caused flare ups! The Aveeno balm is definitely the one we’re sticking with because it has worked for years.
4) They may need a prescription
Sometimes an over the counter cream won’t work and your child might need prescription ointment to get their eczema under control.
At the worst point, my daughter needed a prescription to get it under control and once it was, I was able to use over the counter cream once I found the one that worked for her.
5) Use unscented detergents
Part of the gentle skin care regime you need to have for your kids Eczema, is using detergents with no fragrance, (even Dreft has fragrance!). So you need to find one that says free and gentle, or free and clear.
I’ve used several different detergents and don’t necessarily have a favorite as they all seem to work well getting their clothes clean and they don’t irritate their skin.
The one I stick with using for washing my kids clothing is ALL free & clear.
You’ll also want to avoid using dryer sheets or fabric softener because again it’ll leave irritating fragrance on your kids clothes.
This was SO hard for me because I’m obsessed with the way clothes smell after they come out of the dryer and when clothes have no smell I feel like they aren’t clean.
But I had to realize that just because they smelled like fragrance doesn’t mean their clothes were anymore clean than washing and drying without a fragranced detergent and softener.
6) Try an oatmeal bath
You can have your child sit in a bath, (lukewarm if they can stand it, warm if they can’t) with Colloidal oatmeal for about 15 minutes. This can help relieve the intense itching and help soften the rough patches of skin.
When they get out of the bath, make sure to use your cream to moisturize them.
7) Check their diet
My kids doctor had told me to try limiting their intake of certain foods to see if it had an impact on the condition of their skin, (food allergies can come out as Eczema).
Some common foods that can cause Eczema are:
You can try keeping a food journal to track what your kid is eating and if they have a flare up after they’ve eaten a specific food. You should wait some time before giving them that food again.
For example, if they drink milk, give it to them once and then don’t give it to them again for a few days and track what happens. Then if they don’t get any flare ups, reintroduce that item slowly and continue to track how their skin is doing.
8) Get a second opinion
If you aren’t sure your child has Eczema, if you don’t like the side effects of the medicine they’re on, or if there’s other options you want to try to heal their Eczema, get a second opinion!
I wish I would have asked more questions from the doctor along the way to have more clarity about Eczema and biracial skin.
Eczema can be a pain (literally) to deal with. It’s frustrating for both you and your child. But these tips are a starting point to help your child’s skin begin to heal and to reduce flare ups.
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