ADVICE & TIPS

Our tips for itchy, scratchy skin

At home

Even if my skin feels "scratchy", I mustn't touch it.
I can scratch my teddy instead.
I wear clothes made of soft cotton so that I have fewer urges to scratch my skin.
I always keep my cream close by so I can put it on when my skin feels "scratchy".

In the bathroom

To cleanse my skin, I take a shower instead of a bath. I use products that are adapted to my very sensitive skin.
To apply cream properly, I put little dots of cream all over and spread it all around. I look like a white ladybug!

During activities

I only have a few teddies; this prevents dust.
I play and exercise to take my mind off my itchy skin.
And most importantly, I always cut my nails so that I don't hurt myself.

Little tips for parents

Does breastfeeding protect my child from eczema?

It's possible, but not certain. We generally advise mothers with an atopic family history to breastfeed exclusively for as long as possible, in order to limit contact with digestive allergens; and to put off food diversification until after the age of 6 months. Though these precautions lessen the risk of atopic dermatitis, they don't entirely rule it out.

Is eczema linked to the diet?

Not normally, but sometimes children have an intolerance to certain foods, which aggravates their eczema. Your doctor can check for a food allergy and, depending on the results, a personal diet can be created.

How should I dress my child if they have eczema?

Avoid wool directly on the skin, as well as synthetic materials that can irritate the skin. Choose cotton that has been carefully rinsed after being washed. Avoid softeners.

Can I bathe my child if they have eczema?

Of course. A bath has several advantages: it cleanses, relaxes and prepares the skin for cream. However, make sure to follow these precautions: the bath shouldn't last too long (10 min. maximum) nor should it be too hot (34° maximum), as heat encourages itching; use soap-free products. And most importantly, share this precious moment of relaxation with your child.

Is eczema psychosomatic?

Not really, but like all chronic conditions, stress can accentuate the symptoms.

Will my child have asthma?

Since atopic dermatitis is part of what we call the atopic "profile" (genetic predisposition to atopic dermatitis, hay fever, asthma, conjunctivitis), it is possible that your child may present some of these manifestations of atopy. That is why we advise avoiding an overly allergenic environment (dust, feathers, fur, etc.).

Can we have a domestic animal?

Fur and feathers can be the cause of respiratory allergies. It is difficult to give an absolute answer. If your child has an animal that they love and that doesn't cause them trouble, you can keep it; if there is sneezing or conjunctivitis, it would be better to keep the animal away; if you don't already have an animal, the risk of allergies is something to consider when buying one.

Are there cleansing rules to follow around the house?

Avoid dust (vacuum instead of sweeping), carpets, rugs and tapestries (full of dust). Choose cotton linens and washable curtains. Avoid feather pillows and wool mattresses. Regularly treat bedding against mites. Avoid household cleaners with aggressive chemicals. Choose hypoallergenic detergents and avoid softeners. Don't overheat rooms (19° maximum) and make sure to air them out every day.

Can my child go out in the sun?

Atopic dermatitis often improves during good weather. However, avoid any direct exposure to the sun before the age of 3 and always apply a high index sun protection product on the areas in need of treatment.

The emollient massage,
a moment of special care

Apply an emollient cream twice a day. A massage with emollient cream is a powerful moment of a day for an atopic child. It's a moment of gentleness and soothing. It is also a moment of contact, tenderness and time with Mum or Dad. Lay the child down before massaging each area, take a small amount of the emollient cream and warm it up between your hands.

  • 1The lower limbs

    Massage from the ankle to the thigh, starting from behind and finishing in front.
  • 2The upper limbs

    Massage from the wrist to the armpits.
  • 3The torso

    Place your hands flat against the base of the stomach. Make large circular motions, going up towards the neck with your hands parallel. At the neck, move your hands down along the length of the shoulders for an encircling motion.
  • 4The back

    Seat your child. Place your hands on the lower back. Make large circular motions, going up towards the nape of the neck.
  • 5The nape of the neck

    Make large circular motions, if necessary going all the way up to the ears, massaging them with your fingertips without forgetting the junction between the earlobe and the cheek.
  • 6The face

    Massage with your fingers, symmetrically. Place your fingers flat against the top of their forehead, descend towards the top of the temples and come back under the nose, sliding under the eyes. Descend along the nostrils, smooth the cheeks and descend towards the neck, passing by the chin. If necessary, apply the emollient cream on the eyelids, mouth and the corners of the mouth with your fingertips.
  • 7The hands

    Place the child's hand on your fingers, massage it by alternating your thumbs. Massage the back of the hand from the tip of each finger, towards the wrist.
  • 8The feet

    The massage is done by alternating your thumbs. Massage the sole of the foot as well as each toe with your thumbs, then massage the top of the foot, going up to the ankle.
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