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Elimination Diet

post #1 of 39
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Need help with elimination diet to improve babies allergies


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Author Topic: Need help with elimination diet to improve babies allergies
tanyako
Member posted 02-13-2001 01:50 PM
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Hi everyone. I am hoping to get some help with how I can reduce my ds eczema by eliminating allergens from my diet. My son is 9 months and has had eczema since he was 3 months . Exhausted trying to find out what the allergens were, I took him to an allergist. We did the skin test which indicated he is allergic to peanut, yeast, beef, peas, & dust mites. After dust mite proofing our room and eliminating those food from my diet, he still has eczema. Those foods he did not test positive for that are common culprits (soy, dairy, wheat, sugar) may still be allergens as the test is ONLY 65% accurate. I wish I had not even done it.
Anyway, I have read a ton of suggestions re: excema and I am trying some (flax seed oil, creams, oatmeal baths). I want to do another elimination diet and try to figure this out. The challenge is first, that I can't cook worth a darn and second, I am not sure what I can eat if I eliminate all yeast, dairy, soy, wheat, peanut, peas, sugar. Suggestions on elimination diets, breast feeding a child with allergies, and eczema would be VERY appreciated.
Thanks
Tanya



olloo&sagie
Member posted 02-13-2001 02:15 PM
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Our dd got eczema at around 3mo too. I had an allergy test done for her and did the elimination diet faithfully for five (very long) weeks. It was soooo stressful for me. I was sure everything I ate was poisoning my baby and spent half my life reading labels. As I have a toddler and husband to cook for as well it was very hellish. Worst of all there was absolutely NO improvement. I'm not trying to discourage you but I just think all factors should be considered. My dd is now almost 9mo and much better. We found that she was very allergic to her grandmas cat. Moisturizing has made a big difference too. We slather ointment on her at least twice a day. I know the chlorine in the pool water affects her skin but she has so much fun that we make that sacrifice.
Most importantly don't think that you are doing anything wrong. My naturopath was constantly trying to blame me and I'm sure that the added stress made dd worse!
Once I relaxed and followed my instincts a bit (and got some really good vitamine A? cream) it started to improve. Until then put mittens on your little guy at night, it did wonders for sleeping.
Good luck, Morgan.


Momay
Member posted 02-13-2001 02:17 PM
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We've been dealing with this same thing for almost a year now.
There is a great website called
http://www.eczemainformant.com . Try that one. Also just do a search for elimination diets online. You might want to try the diet here
http://www.feingold.com . (I hope I am making these links work correctly!!!!)
Breastfeeding is a great thing for eczema babies!
We tried various things to get the e to go away. Some worked. Some didn't. Some worked for a little while then stopped. Just goes with the territory. It can get really frustrating. The itching and open sores are sooooooooo hard to deal with. Sometimes I would just hold my daughter and cry when she woke up at night digging into her legs until she bled. It was horrible.
BUT it is getting better. We don't know if it because she is getting older or if something we are trying is working. We are just glad it's getting better!
Right now, she eats what she wants. We put an ayurvedic powder into her bath (like a mudbath!). She gets herbal lotion IMMEDIATELY after getting out of the bath. Then we dab on some evening primrose on the bad spots. Then we put 100% cotton tights on her so her legs will be protected. She wears a long-sleeved shirt also. Harder to get to the skin when scratching!
We put e.primrose oil in her food. We also experimented with chickweed tea and burdock tea but she didn't like those. I'm still trying to make them appealing. We don't do much sugar in our diet. But she eats whatever we eat, which is a large variety of foods. I, for one, never had much success with elimination diets. BUT that does not mean that you won't. Eczema is different for everyone.
Hope I've helped in some way! Good luck!!!!


Momay
Member posted 02-13-2001 02:19 PM
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Oh, just wanted to add, we had the allergy test too for Sophie. I'm not sure how accurate those things are. And it was horrible for her to endure. I really really regret doing that to her...
In our case, we think that the water where we live triggered her eczema. It is very highly chlorinated here. Have you thought that the eczema could be environmental?


Rainyday
Member posted 02-13-2001 03:31 PM
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I have responded to a few different posts on the topic of eczema so I don't want to be redundant, but I have alot to say on the subject.I'll just say that going to a pediatric skin specialist helped me understand a few things when nothing was working for baby's eczema, also, the pediatricians wise words regarding blaming yourself for the rashes--don't. Also, when we did the skin test for allergies, their milk sample didn't register, but we knew she was allergic because she had an anyphelactic reaction when it was fed to her. So they tried the test with fresh milk, and it caused a reaction. When I eat powdered milk or proccesed dairy products, it does'nt seem to affect her very much, but fresh milk will cause a serious rash on her face, which takes two or three days to appear. Because it does not instantly transfer from milk to baby, it can be difficult to pinpoint.
Today, for example, she has a rash and I have been trying homeopathics and herbs, but it only helped a little and it started to get bad, so I applied the corticosteroid (Elocom, very effective, as some aren't)quite sparingly, and the rash is almost vanished four hours later. It took me about two months to really stop eating all her allergic foods, because doing it sometimes isn't enough.
Anyway, good luck with your efforts...
[This message has been edited by Rainyday (edited 02-13-2001).]



francisflock
Member posted 02-14-2001 12:47 AM
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I have seen a baby of a friend acquire eczema. They lived in town with chlorinated, flourinated (and who knows what else) water. She was bathing the little girl nearly every day. She had done all the doctor's advice to no avail. Finally she took the bathing down to about twice a week and only in purified water and herbal soaps. The child has had no problems since.
Makes sence to me. Babies are so pure at birth and the first thing we do is douse them in chemicals. I pray something this simple will heal your baby. too.



sagewinna
Member posted 02-14-2001 08:44 AM
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An elimination diet worked wonders for us when my DS was a tot. I recommend keeping a journal of what you eat as well as any reactions she has so you can begin to see a patterns. My DS is allergic to milk products (Casien, lactose, lactase, casienate as well as milk, cheese, etc. Milk products were the hardest to actually get rid of, too!), oranges, strawberries and peanuts. These are all pretty common allergins. Corn, eggs and tomatoes are very common allergins, too.
You may have a few weeks where you eat a lot of sweet and regular potatoes, squash, carrots and brown rice! Luckily you can make stuff like that ahead of time and microwave it when you are hungry. Go to your local health food store and find quinoa and other unusual grains. Eat beans, too! There are a lot of good books with info on elimination diets that have recipes.

Don't give up! Finding the allergins is the hard part. If you can find them and keep them away from your diet there is a better chance of your little one growing out of the allergy. You are doing a wonderful thing!



tanyako
Member posted 02-15-2001 07:03 AM
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Thanks for sharing your experiences, encouragment, website references, and advice. I had not considered the water as a possibility. I will call the H2O Co. today.
In the mean time I am doing web searches for elimination diets and I am off to the library to search for resources. Any recommendations? I think I can live off sweet potatoes and squash, for a little while at least. Sagewinna, what is quinona? I have never heard of it.

Blessings,
Tanya



sagewinna
Member posted 02-15-2001 08:41 AM
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Quinoa is a grain that is very well tolerated by maost people with food allergies. At our health food store you can buy it and get a little paper with cooking directions.


Rainyday
Member posted 02-15-2001 01:08 PM
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And quinoa is also very nutritious and tastier than brown rice in many ways, and cooks faster.


tortoisel
Member posted 02-15-2001 04:37 PM
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I've been going through the same thing with my 3 1/2 month old daughter. Actually, her eczema has improved a lot...but she keeps breaking out in a pimply rash on her face. I've eliminated dairy and that seems to help, and I'm keeping a food diary to try to correlate the rash to what I eat. When researching elimination diets, the best one I found was on Dr. Sear's website. It's basically organic turkey or lamb, green and yellow squash, rice and rice products, and pears or pear juice for two weeks. (No oil or spices.) Then you add one new thing every four days to see how your baby reacts. You can find it easily on the website if you do a search.
If you don't like to cook, look at this at a great excuse! Maybe you could get your husband and toddler some frozen organic stuff for the duration and keep sandwich makings on hand for them.

I know how frustrating this is, because as a previous poster said, the conventional medical community doesn't really have any answers--just stick some steroids on it and be done with it.

One thing that has really helped my daughter's eczema is a homeopathic cream called Florasone (you can find it online). She had the eczema on her legs and torso, and now just has a few patches around her knees. This cream has the same effect as a steroid but none of the side effects.

Finally, I just read Dr. Andrew Weil's book Spontaneous Healing. He talks about eczema a little in it, and says that almost 50% of children in Japan have it! He thinks this is because they recently went from a vegetable and fish-based diet to a Western diet very high in meat and dairy products, and also that agricultural chemicals play a large part. For skin conditions and allergic disorders, he recommends cutting out dairy and cutting way back on meat-based protein, and also eating as organically as possible.

Best of luck!



tanyako
Member posted 02-16-2001 09:29 AM
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Thanks! I will check out quinona.
Tortoisel - I appreciate the info. It IS my excuse not to cook! I have been dreading the diet thinking I needed to learn new reciepts and discover new foods to make my family healthier...and maybe I do. But not to do the elimination diet. Thanks for helping me shift my paradigm.



Rainyday
Member posted 02-16-2001 12:46 PM
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About Florasone...I have used it alot and would also reccomend it, but would definitely
not say it has the same effect as the cortisone cream,as I am finding Florasone increasingly ineffective. It's like a pricy moisterizer, in a way. But that's just me.


mirlow
Member posted 02-16-2001 09:29 PM
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you might want to try finding information on allergy elimination through acupuncture. I don't know any websites but look under NAET. It's much easier than watching what you eat. For a yr I had to eliminate dairy and foods with gluten. It was hard but not impossible, one good thing was I lost alot of weight because I couldn't eat anything. I was lucky enough to have a handful of health food stores around. I also would check out cookbooks at the library.


TRISTANMOM
Junior Member posted 02-28-2001 07:17 AM
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Allergies in babies are more frequent that most people believe. As a nutritionist (working on myPhD) I have a few tips that may help:
1. Log onto Metagenics.com. Find a practitioner near you who sells their products. Then go to that practitioner and ask him for UtraCare for Kids. It's a non allergenic protein powder that is one of a kind. It's a medical food, meaning it's pre-digested and is packed with vitamins.
2. Do your best on the elimination diet. Don't go nuts if you slip here and there.

3. Water, water, water.

4. Get your child a chiropractic adjustment. My husband adjusted this little kid (about 5-6 years old) who was so allergic he couldn't eat any fruits or vegetables and could not be around any cats or dogs. Within one month they had a yellow lab puppy and the kid was eating as if nothing was ever wrong.

5. Try a CRA practitioner. CRA is contact reflex analysis and it's an amazing technique that can help the body remove it's communication lines within.

Hopes this helps.
Cornelia
post #2 of 39

eczxma elimination diet

My 1 yo son has long suffered from eczxma that occasionally gets better with liberal application of moisturizers. We've eliminated alot of environmental things over the past months including fabric softener and non cotton fabrics. He's mostly breastfeeding but does eat some fruit, vegetables, rice cakes, and crackers. We've decided to start eliminating common allergins from his and my diet... should be easy for him since it would just be eliminating the wheat crackers... but tough for me since I eat alot of wheat products and dairy. I've also read to include oily fish in your diet, but not sure if this is safe for us because of the mercury. Has anyone had luck getting to the bottom of severe eczxma through elimination diet and or other remedies?
post #3 of 39
I posted this a couple of weeks ago. My nursing 8 mos old has moderate to severe eczema. For sure he is allergic to eggs and all things dairy.

THe last weeks I have gone on a gluten free diet and that has been helping tremendously (not 100%) but I'm not using cortisone on his face and his cheeks look about 90% better (I was using the cortisone more than twice a day everyday). Gluten free means no wheat, barley, rye and spelt. Wheat shows up in very unexpected places...

It has been very tough, thank goodness I love vegetables, tofu, beans, quinoa and brown rice otherwise I'd starve in this wheat filled world.

If you're thinking about doing the elimination, PM me and we can provide moral support for each other (some days I need it...)

BUT, it's all worth it!!!
post #4 of 39
The book, "Is this your child" by Doris Rapp, MD, lays out a food allergy diet that helps to identify and eliminate offending foods.

For the fish oils- you can get supplements with the same oils that either fish based, plant based, or a combination of both. I get one of the combination varieties from our health food coop or from www.puritanspride.com
post #5 of 39
It's DHA that really, really helps w/ exzema. I use a vegetarian form, derived from algea. But, I know that www.nordicnaturals.com sells a fish oil derived DHA that is guaranteed free of mercury.
My son had some bad exzema- and it went away after I started takin 500 mg of DHA daily and giving him 1 tsp. flax oil 2 x daily.
As for topical treatments, there is a homeopathic cream called Florasone. It really did help relieve and clear some of the exzema.
I think it's a good thing to use in addition to DHA and flax, until you get it under control!
post #6 of 39
We had success with the following diet:
No cows dairy (diluted goat or sheep or rice milk)
No wheat
No tomatoes, mushrooms, spices, onions, no citrus fruits
No beef
No sugar (or as little as you can)
Little dried fruits
No colourings or preservatives

Lots of fresh vegetables esp. leeks (in place of onions), lamb, rice and pears are very mild and non-allergenic
For breakfast millet porridge (soak overnight and cook for 15 mins) with ground up seeds and dried apricots for sweetening.

Use rice flour as a wheat substitute in sauces, with soy milk or rice milk.

Also supplement with 10mg of zinc and evening primrose oil or other omega3&6 oils.

It was hard work but after about a year it paid off and now dd can eat most things in moderation. We now use spelt instead of wheat and still limit dairy, tomatoes, sugar and citrus, but if out and about she can now eat most things! hurray!!!!!!
We found that in restaurants the safest bet was french fries or plain vegetables and rice (otherwise everything is breaded or in sauces with wheat!)

Good luck
post #7 of 39
I just have to say that I feel for any family that has to cope with eczema. My dd was the child that you see in the doctor's books, she had eczema everywhere except for her diaper area, oozing and bleeding. These days, at 26 months, we can go out and the only thing people will comment on is how rosy her cheeks are. I used to be terrified to take her out because of the well meaning people that tell you what to do about it, like they've ever had a horrible itchy 4 month old baby to succor. Anyway, I never had any luck with elimination diets or any sort of oil. Homeopathy (lycospodium or something like that) cleared up her scalp. We have had to use Cortisone and elocon and believe me when I say I thought I would never ever use any kind of prescription or over the counter drug. I am, for most things, a strict herbs first sort of a person. Anyway, I'm not giving any advice but I am out here always happy to commiserate.

Oh yeah, now that she is eating more than she is nursing, cutting out citrus fruit and tomatoes and other nightshades from her diet has helped considerably, but she still gets it a little. When she has a flare-up (read raw hands, itchy rash on legs, belly, and around the mouth, insted of just mildly itchy hands and a little spot here and there) she is always constipated, and always in a really bad mood, whining, hitting, pinching, asking for things over and over and over again. I think stress is one of the biggest factors for my dd. We are very stressed right now, and she definately senses that. She is also teething her final molars for this age, thank goodness. Anyway.......
post #8 of 39
Thanks all for sharing your experiences and ideas about what might work. We originally went the route of his pediatrician and tried a new topical treatment to stop the itching but it doesn't work and I'd really like to find out what's causing the itching. Yesterday we just happened to brouse through "is this your child" and ds seems like the text book case of allergy aggravated eczxma. Since this started around 3mo with him, he's always had oatmeal baths and now we're wondering if it could be another source of gluten and irratation for him. I will see if our health food store has the Florasone cream bebe luna mentioned. What is the purpose of the flax oil? Does it also have DHA? Funny because I was taking capsules of oil for DHA while pg and for awhile afterwards, but stopped because it gave me heartburn. Now I'm trying a new one called Fisol that has a coating on it so it doesn't dissolve until it's in your intestines and no heartburn. Keep the tips and support coming! I need it.
Thanks again, Kanga
post #9 of 39
Is that allergy aggravated eczema as a synonym to atopic dermatitis, or is it, like, as opposed to other kinds of eczema? Just curious.
DHA is in flax oil, also hempseed oil, I think. There are also eggs from chickens fed flaxseeds that claim high levels of DHA, which might be in a form easier for humans to process.
Gross as it sounds, I'd tend to reccomend fish oil over flax oil for the same reason.
I was a vegetarian, and vegan for some of the time, for 9 years. I eat some meat and fish now, after doing some research into physiology and nutrition (as part of massage school.)
We really need more fat than is currently in vogue, especially kids who need it for healthy nervous system growth. We do need it in a certain balance obtained best through pasture fed chicken eggs, wild fish and game, and buffalo.
I have heard some people getting itch relief from calendula salve, a friend of mine made some for her dd who's eczema was pretty mild, and it helped a lot. It is a marigold, though, so possibly an allergen. Nettles are supposedly good for allergies, pour boiling water over the leaves in a mason jar and cover, infuse 6 hours, strain, dilute, and drink at least one glass every day. It's a food plant, and perfectly safe to drink a lot.

-oh yeah, the mercury. Most oily fish is ocean fish. It's the river and lake fish that is especially problematic. Tuna, salmon (esp wild, as it eats what it should) that kind of thing is fine. Sardines are supposedly good for oil. bleah.
post #10 of 39
I'm not sure about atopic dermatitis... I only called it allergy aggravated exczma because the book described the area's on the body where the exczma shows up if it's allergies that cause it (according to my dh who actually read the book). I thought large, ocean fish had the highest levels of mercury simply because they lived longer and it accumulated in their systems. I've read to stay away from shark and tuna for example. I am also eating the sardines for DHA and calcium since I'm not drinking milk anymore. I'm actually worried about my fat intake with this diet since most of my fat was coming from dairy products before. I've already gone below my prepregnancy weight by about 5 lbs and would rather not loose too much more... I'm getting rather boney. I thought that maybe peanut butter was okay now that ds is 1 yo.
Sorry I'm rambling now...

We tried several versions of calendula ointments, but his skin is too far gone for these to help I think. The aveeno daily lotion works well if we apply it about 10 times a day. It's absorbed quickly and stops his itching for awhile. Thick pastey ointments (the calendula, vasaline, eurcine) seem only to irritate him.

Anyway... I made it through day # 3 with success!
post #11 of 39
two other lotions to try

Shikai borage oil therapy, pediatric formula. Pumpkinseed (?) said it did moisturize, although it didn't cure the excema. It helps to prevent my adult winter dry skin excema.
www.shikai.com

Triceram was recommended by my dermatologist as an effective moisturizer that replaces ceramides in the skin's barrier layer. I use it when the excema begins to break out, despite the use of the Shikai lotion. It clears things up in just a few days for me. I get it as an over the counter cream at Walgreens- expensive- $30 for 3.4 oz, but well worth the money to me. That's why I use it in combination with the less expensive Shikai lotion. It's thick, but not oil, and does not irritate my skin at all. It is not a steroid or any type of medication.
www.triceram.com
post #12 of 39
Maybe someone else can jump in on this fish issue, since I don't know definitively. I have always heard that the major pollution is in lakes, rivers, and close to shore.....

Kanga, my dd has the same problem with thick oily stuff. We've never been able to put anything on her. We use Kiss My Face olive and aloe lotion these days, and she does OK, but she is doing much better than she was when she was little.

You shouldn't be losing weight while you are pregnant. Are you showing ketones in your pee? That isn't good. But you know that already.

It is my understanding that eczema is an allergy-related thing. It is either from something like food or dust that you ingest/ breathe in, or it is from something that you touch, like poison ivy. atopic dermatitis or contact dermatitis.

Sometimes, you try everything and nothing works. We were about there, when all of a sudden dd started getting better. Now, at 2, when she breaks out it is much less of a nightmare. I have heard this from other families, too.

I don't know what kind of laundry soap you use, but some people have a problem with the enzyme type cleaners. We're ok with those, but dd breaks out from Borax, so I can't use it.

ok, enough rambling
post #13 of 39
Hi again,
Leafylady thanks for the suggestions, but we've already tried the Shikai borage oil therapy, pediatric formula and it seems to burn his skin. I'm so bummed, he's getting only worse. I went to a holistic center and talked with them about it...they suggested that I talk to him about it and try to figure out what's going on with him. I was a little put off by this since I think we are very well connected... but I tried a sort of meditation thing with him while he was nursing/napping. Just telling him that I loved him and to release his tension from teething, reasured him that his skin was going to get better. Well he slept for 3.5 hours in the middle of the day! and then went to bed 3 hours earlier than usual that night! But like I said earlier, poor guy is still pretty miserable.

Just to clarify, I'm not pregnant now... I meant my prepregnancy weight from before I was pregnant with ds.

Thanks everyone for all your input... got to run.
Kanga
post #14 of 39
Y'know, I was just scanning the toddlers and tea thread, and someone was talking about giving nettles to their child "to help clear up his skin" and was taking burdock herself for eczema. I gave a recipe there for a de-tox tea that my dd has been drinking like it's going out of style, she calls it bitter tea. Now, she has been having this big eczema outbreak, ever since we had potatoes 4 days in a row. (which was a horrible thing to do to her, as she can't really do nightshades. Potatoes are sort of ok on a rotation basis, like, once a week maybe.....) Anyway, that usually means 2 or 3 days of putting elocon on (which I dilute with lotion) at bedtime, to get her sort of not so itchy and red, and then another week and a half (without steroids) before it is mostly gone. This time, I didn't use the elocon at all because she started to clear up immediately when I removed the potatoes and made this infusion. Wow.

It's dandilion, red clover, burdock, nettles, and oatstraw.
post #15 of 39
hera, saw you posted on the omega 3s and prenatal diet thread and i just thought i'd give you the heads up to the links i posted there. the ewg link will give you a tremendous amount of info on fish and contaminants. it's at http://ewg.org/pub/home/reports/brainfood/execsumm.html and dr sear's dha site at http://www.dhadoc.com can give you info about the supplements he reccomends. hope that helps some of y'all.

-beanma.
post #16 of 39
Cool, that was just what I was looking for. pacific salmon is ok! hooray!!

Anyway, I had major sushi cravings when pregnant, and dd is smarter than I am already...
post #17 of 39
Hera, Thanks for the tip on the infusion. I'll give it a try. His condition seems to be fluctuating, it looks great right when he wakes up, but as the hours wear on, it looks worse again. What is this elocon? Is it a liquid? Who manufactures it?

Thanks so much for your help. I love sushi too...

edited to add:
Hera (or anyone who can help), I was wondering about where I can get more fat in my diet? Less than a week wheat and dairy free and I feel like I'm wasting away... I'm exaggerating a bit, but I'm so used to filling up on cheese, milk, cookies, ice cream... is the solution meat, fish, oil? I always use olive oil in my cooking.

I bought some ground flax seeds to add to my morning rice cereal. Where else can I add it?

Also, I have no idea about how to prepare tofu. Can anyone help me out.

Gee, looks like I have no idea what I'm doing. I just want to make sure I stay well nourished so that my breastmilk stays pleantiful and healthy for ds.
post #18 of 39

Oohh! Where have I been?

THe shikai pediatric lotion works really well for us. It really helps the flakes especially on his scalp. First I use the shikai all over his body, then I use a thick layer of A&D over the lotion. THis really works for us. I don't need to use cortisone on the face,or legs anymore, but sometimes on the arms I do have to use it. He gets a plain water bath up to twice a day, which he loves by the way.
I also tried the Weleda Calendula ointment and that seems to work on his face really well, but not much difference on his body. It smells really good.

I'm taking Norweigan brand liquid cod liver oil since ds is nursing. It's not so bad. I think maybe *I* am allergic to flax tho. Everytime I take the oil I get itchy all over.

The best thing so far has been the elimination diet. I used to eat a LOT of oatmeal. Now without it and the other gluten grains, my ds seems to be doing better.

Of course, this week he has been sick with fever and that definitely has exacerbated the eczema.

Poor little guy. I hate to see him red and itchy.
post #19 of 39
it's a steroid ointment, stronger than cortisone.I have a love/hate relationship with the stuff. Only for emergencies.
post #20 of 39
You guys have been so great with your support and advice this week. I've totally broken my pact with myself to only come here twice a week. Oh well, I needed the extra support.

Pumpkinseed, maybe I'll try the shikai again once his wounds heal. My husband also has a severe case with open wounds on one of his hands and he said that the shikai lotion burned alot. We're trying to keep it simple now... I clean his skin with a little bit of witch hazel once a day and then we just go nuts with the aveeno lotion.

Hera, did you get a perscription for the elocon? Cortizone ointment only makes him itch more. The last time we were at the docs when his eczxma was bad they gave us a sterioid free ointment called protopic...also doesn't seem to help him. I'm really hoping this diet starts to help him. He seems to be itching less now, so it might just be some time for his skin to heal. I'm thining of wrapping his bad spots in bandages so they stay moist and he can't scratch them. Problem is that his forehead is one of the bad areas.

Pumpkinseed, how's your ds feeling? Does he itch with the A&D?
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