my poor baby looks awful this morning. It's oozing and peeling. She is bf exlusively, as I read below, I am going to stop dairy and see if that helps. What kind of soap, laundry detergent, cream, etc should I try?
My son's pediatric dermatologist has recommended a new over the counter product called "triceram". It is non-steroidal, non medicated. It adds "ceramides" to the skin, and is supposed to be very effective. He said that they'd had a lot of luck with it for excema in babies and toddlers. They are recommending it now because it is non steroidal, so it doesn't have the possible side effects.
He actually recommended it to me because I'm pregnant and was worried about using hydrocortisone, a steroidal cream. He also knows that I am very skeptical of doctors and medicines, so he is sensitive to that and does not recommend any products or treatments just on a whim.
It's expensive, but if it works, it's worth it to me. I got it at Walgreen's and had to ask for it by name, even though it's over the counter. You may have to order it in your area. Our Walgreen's only carries it because the dermatology dep't is recommending it.
As for soap, I wouldn't use any soap on her skin. Detergents should be fragrance and dye free. No fabric softener ever.
thank you so much for responding. i am going to try aveeno, ive heard good things about it. We really don't bathe her often. maybe once a week. I want toavoid steroids, and I am afraid that this will scar. Anyone know if it does when it gets to the peely weepy stage. Hate to sound superficial, but it's my little girls face.
The Triceram does not have any steroids at all in it. That is why they recommend it for babies and young children.
It's a moisturizer that adds lipids to the skin. Here is a link that tells about it, has links to research on the product, and shows before & after photos. http://ska.safeserver.com/triceramrx.html
One paragraph from the link reads
"TriCeram is completely safe for all skin types, including sensitive skin and the delicate skin of children. The key lipids used in TriCeram are the very same lipids that occur naturally in the skin, which dramatically reduces skin sensitivity and irritation."
I'm not too sure about scarring but my husband has/had pretty bad excema and does not have any scars and Isaiah had it pretty bad also before we were able to get it under control. We use Coco Butter on him all the time and butter him especially well after bathing. When we wash him we use Kiss My Face olive oil soap. He hasn't had any problems with it since. Many prayers to your daughter, hope that her excema clears soon.
You poor thing, I remember when my dd was just covered, I felt so helpless. How old is she? You have to try and break the scratching cycle to allow healing. If she is young enough try socks on the hands if she is at her face a lot, and for nights get some special eczema pyjamas, they are all in one button down the back have the hands and feet sewn in and you can put tapes around wrists and ankles to prevent them pulling a hand or foot inside and scratching. They were our life savers, we had no sleep until we had them. They are unbleached organic cotton.
DO NOT USE ANY SOAP OR SHAMPOO on her, my dd has only been washed in water for 3 1/2 years (her hair has been washed with v. mild shampoo 3 times) otherwise it is just rinsed. It is waist length and very shiney!!
Use only eco laundry wash or laundry balls which leave no soap deposit at all. Set machine to do an extra rinse and do not use softener.
do not wear perfume or perfumed cream yourself which might irritate her skin. Make sure your clothes are not synthetic or wool which might irritate her when she is carried, and also not washed in strong detergent.
Try to cut out dairy yourself - i was having loads and I did try to cut it out but failed, dd had eczema from birth too despite fully bf, in second pregnancy I had none and still have none - ds is free from eczema.
I swear by a cream from California (you can imagine how hard it was to get in ireland!) called Self Heal Cream, with wonderful oil extracts and self heal plant. it really moisturises the skin and softens hard scaly areas.
In emergencies - when she had completely destroyed her skin and was going demented I would resort to 0.01% hydrocortisone cream for a day to allow quicker healing and then back to Self Heal. Luckily we didn't use it often.
At 10 months she went on a regime of combination homeopathic remedies, self heal cream, no dairy (diluted goats milk when weaned), whole foods (millet porridge for breakfast), no sugar, no tomatoes, no citrus, no onions, no mushrooms, limited dried fruit. We followed this strictly for 18 months and she was clear - we are slowly introducing everything but she is still mostly non-dairy and non citrus. Sugar definitely gives her a reaction as does stress and when she is ill.
Have you tried introducing essential fatty acids into yours or her diet?
My son suffered from exzema until I began giving him 1 tsp. flax oil, daily (he was 6 mo) and I also began taking 500 mg. DHA, daily. I had tried various creams and ointments, but it never cleared until I introduced the EFA's. Remember, what appears on our skin, comes from within.
My son too has eczema. I have used Calendula Cream on it and it works well. The ped wanted to prescribe hydro-coritzone but I refused.
Remember that the more stuff you put on it, you are just supressing it. Even the homoepthic stuff supresses it. She has toxins in her body that need to come out. I would get to a homeopath as soon as you can. She is probably reacting to something you are eating.
Whatever you do stay away from the steroid creams. They are the worst. They can lead to asthma. (I think others can too because you are supressing it and that forces it to attack another organ, but am not positive)
Currently what we are doing to treat my sons is to take him off of wheat, dairy and eggs and to treat him with a homeopathic remedy. I am just starting this tomorrow so don't know yet how it will work.
The Triceram has worked for me. I save it for flareups, because it is pricey. It does not have the immediate itch relief of hydrocortisone, but it has a much longer term relief of the excema problem. I guess overall, it's not as immediate as a steroid cream because it is working to rebuild a certain surface layer of defense in the skin.
When my skin is just dry, but hasn't yet flared into excema, I use a lotion by Shikai called Borage Therapy on my legs and forearms. The active ingredient is supposed to be borage oil. It does work well in preventing the excema, but the TriCeram is handy when the excema really does break out in full.
I have tried supplementing with freshly ground flax seed and with flax seed oil supplements, but, for me, neither worked to improve excema or my dry skin in general. Actual creams do work better for me.
If that link doesn't work, go to their homepage at www.shikai.com and navigate to the products page. It's a natural product, not tested on animals, etc....
I don't think that the borage therapy lotion would clear up a bad outbreak, but once the outbreak is cleared up, I think the borage therapy lotion helps to prevent future outbreaks. It's also much much cheaper than the TriCeram.
edited to add: http://www.shikai.com/info/borage.htm
This is an article on Shikai's website about the benefits of borage oil. Of course it is written by the company's founder, but it seems to be well researched with plenty of citations from other researchers.
I posted a thread here a while back about dd#2's excema. You can probably find it a few pages back. she's almost 1 now. Her turned out to be yeast related. With dietary measures, essential fatty acids & primadophilus powder, it's almost gone now.
last night i went on a rampage and washed all her clothes w dye and color free cleaner, thenn bought aveeno baby soap and lotion. gave her a bath and lubed her up, looked better than ever. turned on the humidifier in our room. this morning it looked awful again.
leafy lady, sorry i didn't respond last time about the tricerum. thats the next thing I'm going to try. i know you said it is $$$$. how much? I followed your link, but couldn't find the price. i understood that it wasnt steroid, but my finger s dont always follow my brain and i forget what im trying to say. i am afraid to go to the dr w this, he'll just give me an rx, and i wont figure out what is causing it.
Dd not nursing, can type like normal person.
I really want to know what is causing this, so I can treat it that way instead of just putting stuff on top of it. I have been sick and not eating much, but my comfort foods were cream of broccoli soup and mac and cheese. : Dairy free now 2 days, no change.
I went to the co op today, the natural healing book I looked at recommended aloe gel and oatmeal paste, and camomile tea. topically. Anyone tried this? I was thinking the oatmeal paste would be too rough, but thought added to a bath might be good. We only bathe her once a week, if that. She's only 3 months old, so scratching isn't really an issue, although I notice that she is rubbing her whole face with the back of her hands and I am keeping her nails short. She is now sucking on her fists and I see red bumps starting there. Oh sheesh, what will I do on her hands?? If this keeps up, I am glad to know there are excema jammies, thanks for that info.
Are you taking DHA? Or even flax or other EFA's? There have been studies showing that essential fatty acids can clear exzema. I don't remember exactly what the role is that they play, but I know that when I introduced efa's into ds's diet and I began w/ the DHA (derived from fish oils), the exzema cleared and never returned. Our skin, and hair, and nails (as well as our eyes and tongue) reveal the state of health w/in us... or the imbalances we are suffering from... I think topical treatments are helpful in releiving the discomfort, but if you want to make it go away- you'll need to assess and treat the body as a whole- you'll need to bring balance to her internal system.
* oh, I also began giving ds acidophilus. "Rhino Vites" makes a powder form for children- it can be mixed w/ water or breast milk and given in a bottle, or it can be sprinkled on food. I think it's important for improving digestion- and I do think exzema is directly related to an imbalance in digestion/asorption of nutrients.
The TriCeram is $30 for a 3.4 oz tube from Walgreens. A little goes a long way, especially on a 3 month old baby. They say to use it daily, even when there is no outbreak. That's when it gets too expensive and I switch to the Shikai lotion. The Shikai borage therapy lotion is about $11 for an 8 oz. bottle. The website says they have a pediatric version, but I don't know the cost.
To see our pediatric/family dermatologist, it takes 6 months to get an appt. He is very thoughtful and sensitive to our needs, but I think you are right- if it's really excema, you'll be told to either use hydrocortisone or a lotion like TriCeram, both over the counter these days. You may as well try the DHA or EFA supplements (for yourself to go through the breastmilk) and the lotions first.
I am a grown-up but had very bad eczema on my face that completely cleared up through the use of mega-doses of flax seed oil and fish oil, and eating a lot of fish rich in oils (such as salmon). It took a few months, but it went away and did not return even though I am not still taking as much oil as before. I also use Aveeno products exclusively. The way I understood the action of the oils (from my naturopathic doc) was that if you cut out dairy at the same time, the omega-3 fats replace the irritating fats that exist in dairy, on a cellular level in your body. In other words, dairy gives our cells irritating and inflammatory fats, and flax seed oil, fish oil replaces these with soothing and anti-inflammatory fats. The fats in flax seed oil are soothing to cells, and they also inhibit prostoglandin. A nice side effect I wasn't looking for was that my menstrual cramps pretty much went away because of this. The reason is takes a while to work is because you have to wait until new cells are formed with the new fats in them. I could have this partially wrong, but this is how I remember the explanation. Anyway, it worked marvelously for me (I had had the eczema on my face for 10 years, and now it is GONE!)
I'm gonna try the shikai, thanks for the link. The triceram is kinda pricey, I'm gonna find out if maybe the insurance would cover it. ??? Doesn't hurt to ask.
How much to take, where can I get it, how do I choose a brand? Can I just take fish oil, is that the same? I remember taking cod liver oil (by the spoon) as a kid and I can do it again. I have noooo problem with that if it will help my baby. What is megadoses of fish oils, or other EFA's. Maybe bebeluna or lauren would pm me something more specific. (sorry for sounding stupid)