Lately I've been getting a ton of direct messages, emails, and comments about how I keep Zachary's eczema under control. I love getting messages like this, because it makes me feel even more united with other mommas, knowing we are going through so many of the same things. With that said, keep the questions coming because I really don't mind. Since so many of you have asked, I will explain how I keep Zac's flare-ups to a minimum. You can see what triggers her allergies in a previous post I've written here.
Tackling Zac's Eczema:
1. Bath every other day
Although water is great for moisturizing skin, it can also really dry it out. Skin produces natural oils throughout the day and if you are constantly washing it off, the result can be drier skin. We give Zac baths only every other day to make sure her skin is well-balanced.
2. Use whatever soap/shampoo that works
I used to buy "specialty" and/or organic soap, hoping it would help Zac's skin. I tried Aveeno Shampoo and Wash, Aquaphor Shampoo and Wash, Cetaphil for babies, Honest, Burts Bees, Babyganics, and other miscellaneous, random hippie stuff. The last thing I tried when all those products did not make much of a difference was, dun, dun, DUN... Johnson's & Johnson's Baby Head-To-Toe Baby Wash. It's super affordable and works so well for Zac. No wonder it's been around for so long! It smells great too!
3. Always pat dry
As soon as Zac is out of the bath, I don't dry her off with a towel. I take her out of the tub, wrap a towel around her, take her over to our bed, pat dry just a bit and start applying moisturizer on her semi-wet skin. Applying the moisturizer on damp skin helps to keep the skin extra dewy.
4. Favorite eczema moisturizer ever: AVEENO BABY ECZEMA THERAPY NIGHTTIME BALM
You guys! This moisturizer has changed our life! It helped Zac's rough, dry and itchy skin even when it was at it's worst. This is what I apply when her skin is still damp from the bath. I am super liberal with it and apply it everywhere.
5. Occasional hydrocortisone
I mix either 1% hydrocortisone (you can find this over-the-counter at any Target or drugstore) or her prescription 2.5% hydrocortisone. I mix it with a bit of the nighttime balm and apply to those problem spots during flareups.
6. Oatmeal baths
I only do this on occasion for extra irritated full body flareups. For example, if she ate something she is allergic to and is scratching everywhere on her body, I use the Aveeno Baby Eczema Therapy Oatmeal Bath. This helps to calm it down to help her sleep a little better. Luckily, I haven't had to do this in months.
7. Trim & file nails
Pretty much a given. We use FridaBaby NailFrida. Long nails cut skin and harbor bacteria. Keeping baby nails short helps to minimize raw, bleeding flareups.
These tips were not a prescription from her pediatrician. They are things I did on my own that has worked for Zac. I have heard great results from those who I have given this advice to, and I hope it's helpful for anyone who has been looking for a new regimen. Of course, it is important to talk with your own healthcare provider in regards to your own child if you have doubts or questions.