Child Eczema

Children come in from the cold with frozen toes and those adorable rosy cheeks that can be cured with a warm hug and cup of hot chocolate. But the redness that results from a skin condition called eczema comes and goes, along with dry, itchy skin that can leave a child miserable and you frustrated. Children have almost no choice but to scratch. You want them to stop, but you know they can’t.

Doctors aren’t sure what causes eczema in children, also known as atopic dermatitis, but it tends to be more common in families that have a history of hay fever or asthma. Children with eczema also seem to have a form of sensitive skin that is more easily irritated by sweating, heat, rough fabrics and some detergents, soaps and cleansers.

Eczema can appear over and over in children, on different parts of the body at different ages.

  • Newborns, for example, usually develop eczema on their cheeks, forehead and scalp.
  • At 6 to 12 months, the rash is often worst on elbows and knees, because of crawling.
  • At two years, eczema tends to center in the creases of the elbows, knees, wrists, ankles and hands.
  • On older children and teenagers, the rash is usually limited to hands.

No matter the trigger or the area that’s affected, soothing the itch right away is your – and our – top priority. Much of the damage associated with eczema comes from scratching and rubbing that the child cannot control.

Our pediatricians and pediatric care specialists at Mercy work closely with every child to determine exactly what’s causing the rash and to provide immediate relief. And, since eczema can re-occur, we provide ongoing care to keep your child comfortable in his or her own skin.

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